Transition at Bethany
Daily Devotional for August 7th
And he led them out as far as to Bethany, and he lifted up his hands, and blessed them. And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven. Luke 24:50-51
The disciples were in a constant place of change. Jesus seemed to lead them in such a way that they could never become lethargic or complacent. They have now followed Jesus for three and a half years. They have eye-witnessed every miracle imaginable. By the word of Jesus, the storms and waves have ceased. The dead have been raised. The religious world has been turned upside down. The kingdom of Israel had no answer to Jesus. Rome was traumatized by the Jewish Messiah. Now the disciples would have such a renewed hope in Jesus that nothing would shake them. Jesus has been crucified and died. He’s been placed in a tomb. He has been raised from the dead. They have seen the risen Christ.
Something was about change in their lives though. They would walk up to Bethany with Jesus, but walk down from Bethany without Him; from by sight to faith. Our lives are no different. Although God is very gracious to us when we give our lives unto Him, we cannot remain in a state of infancy. Walking by sight and by feeling were never His intentions for us. God is continually growing us into a place where there will eventually be a transition in our lives; and that is where we must learn to walk by faith. As Jesus continually stretched the faith of the first disciples, He will stretch us as well.
God desires to establish your faith solidly in Him! As with the first disciples, the Lord will prepare you to walk by faith. Right now, God is at work building your faith to a point where nothing will shake it. We must allow Him to do this work in our lives. You may feel the presence of God walking with you step by step right now, but there will be a transition; Jesus will bring you to Bethany. Not that you will never feel His presence again, but that your faith will be so concrete that you know God is with you always! He desires to establish you to walk by faith, not by sight.
Bethany will forever afterward be marked in the disciple’s lives as the place where they would walk totally by faith. They would never be another day where they would see Jesus in bodily form. They would now have to rely on the Holy Spirit to guide them into all truth. The lessons from Galilee to Bethany are very important and should never be downplayed. Jesus taught them these lessons in order to prepare them for His departure. John 20:29 Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed. There is a greater blessing to those who have not seen yet believe. If you feel as though you are in this transition, then let God have His perfect way in your life. There are great blessings to walking by faith. God is transitioning you into a place of faith; which is the place where He can move mightily in your life.