take the next step

take the next step


John 19:28-42
Joseph of Arimathea, who had been a secret disciple of Jesus (because he feared the Jewish leaders), asked Pilate for permission to take down Jesus’ body (John 19:38).


Read Psalm 3:1-8 to learn how to respond when facing a hopeless situation.


What predicament in your life seems hopeless? What small step can you take to express your confidence in God?

Have you felt the crushing weight of despair? Perhaps a performance review was negative, a cancer screening was positive, or your spouse wanted a divorce. Suddenly, your life seemed pretty much over.

Joseph of Arimathea had one of those days. Having been a secret follower of Jesus, he apparently was there when his fellow council members condemned Jesus to death (Luke 23:50-51). He thought Jesus was going to establish His kingdom on earth. But that hope was quickly dashed when Joseph witnessed Jesus’ death one dark day.

Then Joseph did something that didn’t seem worth the risk. It was a small gesture, yet it turned out to be part of the salvation story. Late that afternoon Joseph went to Pilate and asked for Jesus’ body. If Joseph had fled with the rest of the disciples, the Savior’s body would have been tossed on the garbage dump with the other crucified criminals, to be eaten by dogs and vultures. There would have been little left to rise from the dead and Jesus’ prophecy about His burial would have been false (see Matthew 12:40). But Joseph buried Jesus in his own tomb, and so fulfilled another prophecy found in the Old Testament (Isaiah 53:9).

Emergency responders tell disaster victims to focus on the task at hand. Just do what you need to do to survive and wait for help to arrive. Help will surely come, if you believe in the Lord who saves. It may come in two days, as it did for Joseph, or not until this life is over. But it will come, for the same Spirit who raised Jesus will also “give life to your mortal bodies” (Romans 8:11).

Are you waiting for deliverance? Take the next step. It might be the very thing God uses in your rescue.

NLT 365-day reading plan passage for today: 1 Corinthians 15:1-20

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3 Responses to “take the next step”

  1. Gary Shultz says:

    When these times come may our souls have there compasses pointing on God Himself. Never are we watched more closely by a looking world as when despair overtakes us. As Joseph, may we seek Jesus, our deliverer, and honor Him. Thank you

  2. Mike Wittmer says:

    I think the key is to hope fully on Jesus and the life to come. “If in this life only we have hope, then we are to be pitied above all men” (1 Cor. 15:19)

  3. Tom Kopper says:

    I was at that same position, last week, and countless other time. Lord give me wisdom – (James 1: 5) My mind took-off – (James 1: 6). But, He rescued me.

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