Textual source : Matthew 27: 55–66.
When we do something which is right in service to Christ, we must admit that we also do it IN PART because of PERSONAL INTEREST.
For instance, we enjoy the success, or we want to win human APPROVAL, or we wish to receive some REWARD for what we do.
But, when Joseph of Arimathea buried Jesus, the disciples were scattered, Jesus was already dead, and all hopes that Jesus would establish God’s Kingdom seemed to be lost. Even none of the known disciples even considered the possibility of Jesus ever coming back to life.
So, in Joseph’s mind as he buried Jesus, what hope could he have had of: can we say receiving some reward for his kind and generous deed? I think the answer is no. Or winning human approval for what he was doing. It was no as well. Okay, enjoying success in the cause of Christ, that was no again.
Only for the love of Christ and nothing else.
Joseph of Arimathea gave his tomb so that Jesus be buried there. Otherwise, Jesus would have been buried without care or respect in a common tomb along with the others who were executed as criminals.
At this hopeless time, those who took the corpse of Christ off the cross identified themselves with Him and His execution, just after a large public manifestation of hatred for Him that same morning. Obviously, this would be a very dangerous task. And, those who bought linen cloth, and those people who prepared Christ’s body and wrapped it, were doing something which must have been very disagreeable.
To those who loved Jesus, it appeared that now there was no possibility of success, no human approval, and no reward, because with Jesus’ dead all the hopes that had been awakened within them seemed like dream now impossible to accomplish and we see that Joseph of Arimathea could have had other motives apart from the simple love he felt for Christ.
Have a look at our society and the so called I receive always in the church prayers of recent.
Joseph of Arimathea serves as an example for us. We should do good and serve the Lord only for the love of Christ.
Now that Christ has died and opened the way into the presence of God, what are we to do? We should draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith. See Hebrews 10:19–25, “Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, His body, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful. And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another - and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”