Wisdom - the final frontier to true knowledge. Welcome to Wisdom-Trek! Where our mission is to create a legacy of wisdom, to seek out discernment and insights, to boldly grow where few have chosen to grow before. Hello, my friend, I am Guthrie Chamberlain, your captain on our journey to increase Wisdom and Create a Living Legacy. Thank you for joining us today as we explore wisdom on our 2nd millennium of podcasts. This is Day 1314 of our Trek, and it is time for Meditation Monday. Taking time to relax, refocus, and reprioritize our lives is crucial in order to create a living legacy. For you, it may just be time alone for quiet reflection. You may utilize structured meditation practices. In my life, meditation includes reading and reflecting on God’s Word and in prayer. It is a time to renew my mind, refocus on what is most important, and making sure that I am nurturing my soul, mind, and body. As you come along with me on our trek each Meditation Monday, it is my hope and prayer that you, too, will experience a time for reflection and renewing of your mind.
Two occasions that bring families and friends together is when we unite to the one we love, and when we have to say goodbye to the one we love in this world. So today, let us consider:
When a man and a woman marry, the two become one. Those who were separate, are now united. It is a life that is meant to be lived happily ever after. That is, at least, until death once again separates them. We should not fear that death, though, because Jesus promised, not just an afterlife, but a better life. This promise of Christ is found in John 14:1-3: Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am.
We who live in the western world might miss the wedding images that are described in this passage, but Jesus’ listeners didn’t. This was a groom-to-bride promise. Upon receiving the permission of both families, the groom returned to the home of his father and built a home for his bride. He “prepared a place.”By promising to do the same for us, Jesus elevates funerals, which is his imminent death, to the same hope level as weddings. From his perspective, the trip to the grave and the walk down the aisle warrant identical excitement.
Weddings are great news! Jesus says, so are burials. Both celebrate a new era, name, and home. In both, the groom walks the bride away on his arm. Jesus is our coming groom. He said, I am going to prepare a place for you, and then “I will come and get you.” He will meet us at the altar. Your final glimpse of life will trigger your first glimpse of him.
But how can we be sure he will keep this pledge? Do we have any guarantee that his words are more than empty poetry or vain superstition? Dare we set our hope and hearts in the hands of a small-town Jewish carpenter? The answer rests in the Jerusalem grave. If Jesus’ tomb is empty, then his promise is not. Leave it to the apostle Paul to reduce the logic to a single sentence in 1 Corinthians 15:23: But there is an order to this resurrection: Christ was raised as the first of the harvest; then all who belong to Christ will be raised when he comes back.
Paul was writing to Corinthian Christians, people who had been schooled in the Greek philosophy of a shadowy afterlife. Someone was convincing them that corpses couldn’t be raised, neither theirs nor Christ’s. The apostle couldn’t bear such a thought. So he wrote in 1 Corinthians 15:1, Let me now remind you, dear brothers and sisters, of the Good News I preached to you before. You welcomed it then, and you still stand firm in it.With the insistence of an attorney in closing arguments, he reviewed the facts in 1 Corinthians 15:4-8: He was buried, and he was raised from the dead on the third day, just as the Scriptures said. He was seen by Peter and then by the Twelve. After that, he was seen by more than 500 of his followers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died. Then he was seen by James and later by all the apostles. Last of all, as though I had been born at the wrong time, I also saw him.
Just as we have witnesses at our weddings, Paul lined up the witnesses, he offered. The proof that the bridegroom would return to claim his bride. Paul called them out one by one. Let each person who saw the resurrected Christ say so. Better pack a lunch and clear your calendar, for more than five hundred testifiers are willing to speak up.
Do you see Paul’s logic? If one person claimed a post-cross encounter with Christ, disregard it. If a dozen people offered depositions, chalk it up to mob hysteria. But fifty people? A hundred? Three hundred? When one testimony expands to hundreds, disbelief becomes belief. Paul knew, not handfuls, but hundreds of eyewitnesses. Peter, James, and John. The followers, the gathering of five hundred disciples, and Paul himself. They saw Jesus. They saw him physically. They knew he was alive and had gone to prepare a place for us.
They saw him factually. They didn’t see a phantom or experience a sentiment. Grave eulogies often include such phrases as “She’ll live on forever in my heart.” Jesus’ followers weren’t just saying this. They saw Jesus “in the flesh.” When he appeared to the disciples, he assured them in Luke 24:39, Look at my hands. Look at my feet. You can see that it’s really me. Touch me and make sure that I am not a ghost, because ghosts don’t have bodies, as you see that I do.”
Five hundred witnesses left a still-resounding testimony: it’s safe to die, we need not fear the separation, our bridegroom will return. So let’s die with faith. Let’s allow the resurrection to sink into the fibers of our hearts and define the way we look at the grave. It is the Christ promise that sets us free. Hebrews 2:15, Only in this way could he set free all who have lived their lives as slaves to the fear of dying.
That is a wrap for today’s meditation, next week, we will continue our trek on Meditation Monday as we take time to reflect on what is most important in creating our living legacy. On tomorrow’s trek, we will explore another wisdom quote. This 3-minute wisdom supplement will assist you in becoming healthy, wealthy, and wise each day. Thank you for joining me on this trek called life. Encourage your friends and family to join us and then come along tomorrow for another day of ‘Wisdom-Trek, Creating a Legacy.' If you would like to listen to any of the past 1313 daily treks or read the daily journal, they are available at Wisdom-Trek.com. I encourage you to subscribe to Wisdom-Trek on your favorite podcast player, so each day will be downloaded to you automatically.
Thank you for allowing me to be your guide, mentor, and most importantly, I am your friend as I serve you through this Wisdom-Trek podcast and journal.
As we take this Trek of life together, let us always:
I am Guthrie Chamberlain….reminding you to ’Keep Moving Forward,’ ‘Enjoy your Journey,' and ‘Create a Great Day…Everyday’! See you tomorrow!