Peter, John, and Mary

John 20:1-9


Read the opening verses of John 20 and learn that GodŐs saints are not all alike in personality and temperament. When Mary Magdalene told Peter and John, ŇThey have taken away the Lord out of the sepulcher, and we know not where they have laid HimÓ (v. 3), as they ran to the sepulcher and arrived at the place, all three acted differently. They all ran to the sepulcher; but John, the disciple whom Jesus loved, outran Peter, and reached the empty grave first. He stooped down and looked in, but went no further. Peter, a bit more zealous and impulsive, ran right into the sepulcher, that he might see with his own eyes. Mary, apparently, came somewhat more slowly back to the tomb and quietly waited to see what Peter and John would do and say. They all trusted and loved the Lord Jesus. The hearts of these three believers were, no doubt, full of hopes, and fears, and anxieties, and expectations, all tangled together. Yet each behaved in their own characteristic fashion. Without question, these things were intentionally written by the Spirit of God for our learning.


      We should always remember that there are great differences of personality and temperament among GodŐs saints. All are redeemed, justified, and sanctified. All are washed in the blood of Christ. All live in the Spirit. All seek the glory of God. But GodŐs saints are not all alike. We do not do things exactly the same way. We do not all react to things the same way.


      If we will remember this simple fact, it will save us much trouble in the journey of life, and prevent many unkind and uncharitable thoughts and words. We should never judge one another harshly, or think ill of others, because they do not see or feel things exactly as we do, or because things do not affect them the same way they affect us. The flowers in the LordŐs garden are not all of one color and of one scent, though they are all planted by one Spirit and are all in His garden. The subjects of His kingdom do not all look alike or always act alike, though they all love the same Savior and all have their names written in the same book of life. The Church of Christ has some in its ranks who are like Peter and some who are like John, and some who are like Mary. Some are fathers, some are elders, some are young men, some are mothers, some are children; but all are GodŐs. Let us always treat them as such: — Loved and chosen of God the Father, loved and redeemed by God the Son, loved and called by God the Spirit (Philippians 2:1-5).









Don Fortner



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