Open Minds - by Greg Steggerda

When Jesus revealed himself to his disciples after Easter, there was an interchange that never really struck me before. I read it this morning, in Luke 24:44-45: 

He said to them, ‘This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.’
“Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures.”

Ever wonder why the disciples were so baffled by Jesus’ arrest and execution? After all, they knew the prophesies, and Jesus warned them what was coming.

It seems to me that the disciples didn’t get it before because the Bible, especially the Old Testament, can’t make sense outside of the sacrifice of Jesus. If you take away what Jesus did when he lived on earth as a man, the Bible is a weird mix of strange old stories, dusty archaeological facts, and obscure prophecies. Once we know about Easter, then the story of Ruth and Boaz, the consistency of God’s character as revealed in the Old Testament Law, and the strange things Isaiah and Jeremiah said all fall into place, pieces of a giant, generations-long foretelling of the thing our children’s Bible calls God’s Great Rescue Plan.

But there’s one more thing we need in addition to knowledge of what’s told in the Gospels. The disciples still didn’t get it until Jesus opened their minds, and we won’t either. That’s why Jesus sent the Advocate, the Holy Spirit. Without the understanding the Spirit gives, we can never achieve heart knowledge of the Scriptures.

It’s a reminder to look at all of the Bible, and all of life, through the lens of Jesus’ sacrifice. And it’s a reminder to always lean on the Holy Spirit to understand. Anything else gives at best an illusion of understanding, a partial knowledge. More likely, it will all just seem like nonsense.

Christians should be the most open-minded people in the world, but we should approach every confusing question, every challenging event, and every new person with a mind opened not to any and every worldly idea, but to a complete understanding of the Scriptures. And for that, we need both to know the Scripture and to be closely connected to God.