Daily Devotional submitted by Lindsey Skiles
In verse 38, we learn that Joseph of Arimathea was a secret disciple of Jesus. He didn’t feel safe expressing his faith openly due to fear of persecution from the Jewish leaders. However, that didn’t stop him from serving the Lord – he asked for Jesus’ body and even brought the expensive materials for the burial.
Thankfully, in the United States, we can share our faith in Jesus freely. But this story led me to wonder: to what extent do we live out that right?
For several years, I was just going through the motions. I was a model “good Christian,” but I didn’t take my faith outside Faith Chapel’s walls. Eventually, however, I realized there is more to a relationship with Jesus than habitually attending church and listening to Christian music. Jesus calls us to dive into emotional and spiritual intimacy with Him and with other believers. This looks like talking with Jesus through prayer, opening our hearts to anything He has to say, and sharing our doubts, burdens, and joys with each other.
The more we engage spiritually, the more opportunities God has to show Himself through our conversations and our experiences. So I encourage you to ask yourself today: Am I living as a secret disciple? What would it look like to love Jesus, and His people, in the open?
Take a moment to pray for the “secret disciples” in America and beyond, and ask God for the courage to share your faith in Him with anyone He calls you to.
Challenge for Growth
Have a conversation about Jesus with someone this week. Some conversation starters could be: “Where do you think Jesus is at work in your life right now?” or “When was the last time you felt God was trying to tell you something?”
Scripture: John 19:38-42
38 Later, Joseph of Arimathea asked Pilate for the body of Jesus. Now Joseph was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly because he feared the Jewish leaders. With Pilate’s permission, he came and took the body away. 39 He was accompanied by Nicodemus, the man who earlier had visited Jesus at night. Nicodemus brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about seventy-five pounds. 40 Taking Jesus’ body, the two of them wrapped it, with the spices, in strips of linen. This was in accordance with Jewish burial customs. 41 At the place where Jesus was crucified, there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb, in which no one had ever been laid. 42 Because it was the Jewish day of Preparation and since the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.