What Jesus Did! 'Don't Cling to Me, Go Tell' — John 20:17-18

Monday, December 15, 2014

Jesus said to her, "Don't hold me. I have not yet gone back up to the Father. But go to my brothers (followers) and tell them this: 'I am going back to my Father and your Father. I am going back to my God and your God.'" Mary Magdalene went to the followers and told them, "I saw the Lord!" And she told them the things Jesus said to her.
— John 20:17-18
Illustration of John 20:17-18 —  But go to my brothers (followers) and tell them this: 'I am going back to my Father and your Father.

Key Thought

The biggest task we have as Jesus' disciples is to not cling to Jesus—to cocoon ourselves in church and in the presence of the Lord—at the expense of going to tell others about him. We have a message of hope and a never-ending life to share with others who are trapped in hopelessness and despair. As disciples, we are not to spend the majority of our time in holy pep rallies, but in the world, touching its hurt and offering it hope in a Jesus who lives in us and can live in them. Jesus accompanies us when we go share that message and go serve those who are broken just as much as he does when we meet together as his people. So let's get out there and give others his message in word and deed.

Today's Prayer

Father, forgive me for being part of a watered down faith that spends so much time on sharing Jesus with itself and avoids entering the world to serve as Jesus served and to show that Jesus is alive today by our actions. Help me share Jesus' message with those around me, not arrogantly or self-righteously, but with genuine concern and through authentic service. In Jesus' name, and for Jesus' sake, I pray. Amen.

Today's Verses in Context

Early on Sunday morning Mary Magdalene went to the tomb {where Jesus' body was}. It was still dark. Mary saw that the large stone {that covered the entrance} was moved away. So Mary ran to Simon Peter and the other follower (the one Jesus loved very much). Mary said, "They have taken the Lord out of the tomb. We don't know where they put him." So Peter and the other follower started going to the tomb. They were both running, but the other follower ran faster than Peter. So the other follower reached the tomb first. The follower bent down and looked in. He saw the pieces of linen cloth lying there, but he did not go in. Then Simon Peter came from behind him. Peter went into the tomb. He saw the pieces of linen lying there. He also saw the cloth that had been around Jesus' head. The cloth was folded up and laid in a different place from the pieces of linen. Then the other follower went in. This was the follower that had reached the tomb first. He saw what had happened and believed. (These followers did not yet understand from the Scriptures that Jesus must rise from death.) Then the followers went back home. But Mary stood outside the tomb, crying. While she was crying, she bent down and looked inside the tomb. Mary saw two angels dressed in white. They were sitting where Jesus' body had been. One angel was sitting where Jesus' head had been, and the other angel was sitting where Jesus' feet had been. The angels asked Mary, "Woman, why are you crying?" Mary answered, "Some people have taken away {the body of} my Lord. I don't know where they put him." When Mary said this she turned around and saw Jesus standing there. But she did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus asked her, "Woman, why are you crying? Who are you looking for?" Mary thought that this was the man that takes care of the garden. So Mary said to him, "Did you take Jesus away, sir? Tell me where you put him. I will go and get him." Jesus said to her, "Mary." Mary turned toward Jesus and said in the Jewishlanguage, "Rabboni." (This means "Teacher.") Jesus said to her, "Don't hold me. I have not yet gone back up to the Father. But go to my brothers (followers) and tell them this: 'I am going back to my Father and your Father. I am going back to my God and your God.'" Mary Magdalene went to the followers and told them, "I saw the Lord!" And she told them the things Jesus said to her.

John 20:1-18

Related Scripture Readings

This is true, because if two or three people are together believing in me, I am there with them."

Matthew 18:20

"The Son of Man will come again. He will come with great glory. All his angels will come with him. He will be king and sit on his great throne. All the people of the world will be gathered before the Son of Man. Then the Son of Man will separate all people into two groups. This is like a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. The Son of Man will put the sheep (good people) on his right and the goats (bad people) on his left. "Then the king will say to those good people on his right, 'Come. My Father has given you great blessings. Come and get the kingdom God promised you. That kingdom has been prepared for you since the world was made. You can have this kingdom, because I was hungry and you gave me food to eat. I was thirsty, and you gave me something to drink. I was alone and away from home, and you invited me into your home. I was without clothes, and you gave me something to wear. I was sick, and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you came to visit me.' "Then the good people will answer, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and give you food? When did we see you thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you alone and away from home and invite you into our home? When did we see you without clothes and give you something to wear? When did we see you sick or in prison and care for you?' "Then the king will answer, 'I tell you the truth. Anything you did for any of my people here, you also did for me.'

Matthew 25:31-40

So Jesus came to them and said, "All authority (power) in heaven and on earth is given to me. So go and make followers of all people in the world. Baptize them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach those people to obey everything that I have told you. You can be sure that I will be with you always. I will continue with you until the end of the world."

Matthew 28:18-20

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About This Devotional

What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Easy-to-Read Version copyright © 2001 by World Bible Translation Center. All rights reserved.