Summary: Jesus has sent us out to be His witnesses. There is no Plan B.
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“Peace be with you” (Shalom) was the standard Hebrew greeting in those days. But I believe those were intended to be far more than a simple greeting. Jesus was probably saying that the peace of salvation is now available because of His crucifixion and resurrection.
· The disciples were CONFUSED.
· The disciples were AFRAID.
On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” (John 20:19).
The reality of the RESURRECTION provides peace during confusing and frightening times.
People are seeing Jesus in strange places today:
· Jesus in a Cheeto
· Jesus in an ultrasound
· Jesus in a potato
· Jesus in a cheese curl
· Jesus in a tree log
· Jesus on a tree
An Orlando, Florida man says that an image of Jesus appears in the trunk of his front yard tree each evening around dusk. “In daylight, you only see the knot in the tree,” said Joe Lewis. “Once it’s dark and the street lights are on, the shadow is cast over the tree.” Now Lewis enjoys sitting outside, looking at the image. “It feels like you are hanging out with Jesus.”
Thankfully, Jesus didn’t appear to His disciples in a Cheeto. He appeared in bodily form. However, at first the disciples doubted that He had really risen from the dead. It was too amazing to be true.
They were startled and frightened, thinking they saw a ghost (Luke 24:37).
· He showed them His HANDS and FEET.
He said to them, “Why are you troubled, and why do doubts rise in your minds? Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have.” When he had said this, he showed them his hands and feet (Luke 24:38-40).
· He was able to EAT food.
And while they still did not believe it because of joy and amazement, he asked them, “Do you have anything here to eat?” They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate it in their presence (Luke 24:41-43).
He said to them, “This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.” Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures. He told them, “This is what is written...” (Luke 24:44-46a).
· The Messiah is to SUFFER.
“The Christ will suffer” (Luke 24:46b).
· The Messiah is to RISE from the dead on the third day.
“And rise from the dead on the third day” (Luke 24:46c).
· Repentance is to be PROCLAIMED to all nations.
“And repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem” (Luke 24:47).
“I will also make you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring my salvation to the ends of the earth” (Isaiah 49:6).
The necessity of the crucifixion and resurrection is stated repeatedly in Luke’s Gospel:
· “The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, chief priests and teachers of the law, and he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life” (Luke 9:22).
· “The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful man, be crucified and on the third day be raised again” (Luke 24:7).
· “Was it not necessary for the Christ to suffer these things and to enter into His glory?” (Luke 24:26 NASB).
· “Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms” (Luke 24:44).
Jesus added proclamation to the list of divine necessities. As it was absolutely necessary for Jesus to die and rise again, so it is absolutely necessary for us to spread the message of repentance and forgiveness.
1. The message: We have a STORY to tell.
“You are witnesses of these things” (Luke 24:48).
2. The method: We must go into the world as JESUS did.
“As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you” (John 20:21 NLT).
As Jesus was sent “into the world,” so also are we sent “into the world.” Jesus prayed to the Father, “As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world” (John 17:18). This is the principle of incarnation, the principle of becoming one with those we would help.