Summary: The week after the Crucifixion and Resurrection of our Lord, Jesus was a time that the Disciples were struggling to find their continued purpose. Having breakfast with Jesus can be very enlightening to us today.
Sermon: Having Breakfast with Jesus
Scripture: John 21: 1-19
Cracker Barrel, Denny’s, McDonald’s, Beiderman’s or just right at home…there’s nothing like a good breakfast. Sometimes laying in bed sleeping soundly, the next breath and your nostrils fill with the pungent aroma of frying bacon or sausage…coffee…and it’s all so good!
Just talking about breakfasts like these, reminds me of when I was growing up and the smell of toast and bacon came into our rooms and we would get up and dressed and go down to meet everyone else in the family and eat breakfast together...while my Mother would read the daily reading from the Upper Room.
It was a good time…a time of fellowship and I believe, learning…learning how to be a Christian through the stories that were read to us over hot chocolate and buttered toast.
This dedicated routine that continued through most of my high school years, I believe, actually became the basis of my beginning faith…even if it was by the process of osmosis.
Today, I would like to look at what was happening with the Disciples of Jesus this first week after His Crucifixion and Resurrection, because I believe they too were learning slowly what being a Christian really meant...and I believe this time in the lives of the Disciples can speak to us just as powerfully as the events of Holy Week.
You see, this was a time that the Disciples needed help more than ever. Just like us, they needed help...and I believe they needed help in at least three ways.
Ø Their Faith had been shaken to its core
Ø They had been privy for the last three years to live next to the God-Man, Jesus, and all His power and they believed that it was over.
Ø They were now alone in the world and had lost their direction.
1.Yes, their Faith had been shaken.
Just days before they had watched as their teacher, their friend and their Messiah had been taken, judged, horribly tortured and crucified and entombed. I still don’t think they understood the immense meaning of it all. Even after Jesus had risen from his own death and after seeing him several times since he had risen, I really don’t believe they knew what this would mean to them.
2. Yes, they had been privy to Jesus and his miracles for three years. They saw and did miracles themselves through Jesus’ divine power. And yet, now, they thought themselves helpless, their way of life had been crushed. They had returned to business as usual...they had returned to their old way of life, accepting the fact that the Roman Empire and the Jewish establishment had returned to living life as it was before Jesus had come.
3. Yes, and they were feeling as if they were alone in the world. Their great following had vanished. They thought their leader and guide was not going before them any longer. Anyway, they had denied him...they all had run away from him. They had sinned against him. They had turned their backs on him during his greatest hour of need...how could they call themselves Disciples after that? They felt the fantastic times of the previous years with Jesus was over...it was back to business as usual....back to fishing, again.
Their commitment was gone...their spirits sagged in lethargic guilt. Their life’s direction and purpose was dead in the water. Their faith’s journey had been inconsistent and faulty at best.
In a sermon by Barry Robinson, he tells this story…a story that, I think, depicts where the Disciples were in their faith and how they felt.
It goes like this...
“During a Pastor’s meeting, an older pastor stood up to testify to his faith. His testimony was rather surprising to a number of people in the room. The Pastor stood up and looked at the group and said, “I am a lay pastor of a small church. I am not ordained. I am not seminary trained. I was asked to leave both Bible colleges I attended. I am divorced and remarried. On any given day I am capable of being a jerk to those closest to me. I am terminally insecure, which causes me to compensate with bouts of arrogance. At times people irritate me, and I hide from them. I am impulsive, which causes me to say things I shouldn’t and make promises I cannot keep. I am inconsistent.
My walk with Christ is a stuttering, stumbling, bumbling attempt to follow Him. At times His presence is so real I can’t stop the tears, and then, at other times, without warning, I can’t find Him. Some days my faith is strong, impenetrable, and immovable – and some days my faith is weak, pathetic, helpless, knocked about like a paper cup floating on the ocean in the middle of a hurricane.