Today’s scripture: Gospel of Thomas 50:1-3
(1) “If they say to you: ‘Where do you come from?’ (then) say to them: ‘We have come from the light, the place where the light has come into being by itself, has established [itself] and has appeared in their image.’
(2) If they say to you: ‘Is it you?’ (then) say: ‘We are his children, and we are the elect of the living Father.’
(3) If they ask you: ‘What is the sign of your Father among you?’ (then) say to them: ‘It is movement and repose.’”
What might God be saying to me?My thoughts (Jeff Miner):
Today’s reading is out of the ordinary. Normally our devotionals are based on Bible passages. The Gospel of Thomas never made it into the Bible of any major Christian group. In fact, the text of the Gospel of Thomas was lost for centuries until a couple of Egyptian farmers stumbled across it buried in a jar near Nag Hammadi, Egypt, in 1945. Scholars believe the text of the Gospel didn’t reach its final form until sometime around 340 A.D. Some of the words attributed to Jesus in the Gospel are very similar to what we find in the Biblical Gospels. But others are quite a stretch, likely added by Gnostic theologians.
So the Gospel of Thomas must be read with caution. We recently discussed it during our “Lost Books of the Bible” sermon series at LifeJourney. As I suggested then, the value of the Gospel of Thomas, in my view, is found in those passages that help us think more deeply about the teachings of Jesus as found in the Bible. Today’s reading is one of those passages in Thomas that meets that standard. Look again at the words:
(50) Jesus says:
(1) “If they say to you: ‘Where do you come from?’ (then) say to them…, ‘We have come from the light, the place where the light has come into being by itself, has established[itself] and has appeared in their image.’
(3) If they ask you: ‘What is the sign of your God among you?’ (then) say to them: ‘It is movement and repose.’”
I’m struck by that last sentence. Following Jesus means finding a healthy balance between “movement and repose,” between action and serenity. In the Bible, there are times when Jesus calls us to action. For example, in Matthew 10:8, Jesus says, “Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons.” As followers of Jesus, we are called to action. Git ‘r done!
But Jesus also says, “Come to me, all you who are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28. As followers of Jesus, we are called to repose.
The key is finding the right balance. A few days ago, when I got up in the morning, it was such a beautiful day, I delayed going to work for a half hour so I could shoot baskets in my driveway. Shooting baskets is one of the most relaxing things I can do. I took that half hour because I felt the Spirit of Christ saying, “A little repose is what the moment calls for.” Making time to refresh is part of discipleship.
But just a few days earlier, I stayed at church working until 11 pm. There were some urgent needs. I felt the Spirit of Christ saying, “I need this to be a day overflowing with action.” That too is part of healthy discipleship.
Thought for the Day: What is Christ calling you to in this moment — more Movement or more Repose?
We encourage you to include a time of prayer with this reading. If you need a place to get started, consider the suggestions on the How to Pray page.