John 20: 15 Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?” Supposing Him to be the gardener, she said to Him, “Sir, if you have carried Him away, tell me where you have laid Him, and I will take Him away.” 16 Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to Him in Hebrew, “Rabboni!” (which means, Teacher). 17 Jesus said to her, “Stop clinging to Me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father; but go to My brethren and say to them, ‘I ascend to My Father and your Father, and My God and your God.’” 18 Mary Magdalene came, announcing to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord,” and that He had said these things to her.
(Observation) When Jesus appears to Mary, she only recognizes Him when He calls her by name. When she clings to Him, He stops her saying “I have not yet ascended to the Father.” He instructs her to “go to My brethren” and tell them He is about to ascend to the Father.
(Interpretation) I suggest to you that verse 17 implies that the time for clinging to Jesus begins after His ascension, for after His ascension believers will cling, hold on, “keeping faith” in Him on whom they have believed. Except for the time Jesus gestures to His disciples and says to a messenger “Behold My mother and My brothers,” I know of no other incidence in the four gospels when Jesus calls His disciples “My brethren.” So, it follows, I further suggest, that once the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus had been accomplished the disciples and all other believers were now adopted “sons of God” and fellow heirs with Christ and are therefore called by our Savior “My brethren.” Further still, Mary and you and I “cling,” hold on, “keeping faith” in the Jesus Christ who has sent His Holy Spirit to dwell within us as a guarantee of His promise of eternal life until He comes.
(Cross-reference) Romans 8: 29 For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren;
1 Timothy 1: 18 This command I entrust to you, Timothy, my son, in accordance with the prophecies previously made concerning you, that by them you fight the good fight, 19 keeping faith and a good conscience, which some have rejected and suffered shipwreck in regard to their faith.
Matthew 12:48 But Jesus answered the one who was telling Him and said, “Who is My mother and who are My brothers?” 49 And stretching out His hand toward His disciples, He said, “Behold My mother and My brothers! 50 “For whoever does the will of My Father who is in heaven, he is My brother and sister and mother.”
Romans 8: 16 The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him.
(Application) So, even now, we brothers and sisters in Jesus Christ say to one another “keep the faith,” or as it says in Hebrews 10:23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful;24 and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, 25 not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.
What do you think? Would those who are most close to you say that you live your life clinging to Jesus or – something else.