Easter came and went. You probably found all your eggs and ate all your chocolate. We came together at church to celebrate Jesus’ resurrection, and sometimes, we don’t think about it again until next Easter. But I have a newsflash for you: Jesus is still risen! The story continues on. Jesus didn’t just resurrect and then peace out. He did a lot more than just disprove YOLO.Inflatable Advertising Arch
“He presented Himself alive to them after His suffering by many proofs, appearing to them during forty days and speaking about the kingdom of God” (Acts 1:3).
What did Jesus say when he was speaking about the kingdom of God? These were the last conversations Jesus had before He ascended, which caused His disciples to rise up and to reach out for the kingdom of God!
Seek and Find — John 20:1-18
“Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?” (v.15).
The first person Jesus spoke to after His resurrection was Mary Magdalene, the woman who had seven demons come out of her (Lk. 8:2). She went to the tomb early in the morning to give Jesus a proper burial, and after seeing the stone was rolled away, she ran to the disciples. But she was soon alone, weeping outside the tomb (vv.10-11). But then Jesus revealed Himself to her by calling her by name, and she joyfully responded. She was seeking, but Jesus sought her and called her. She desired to do the impossible—carry the full weight of a dead body that was covered in a hundred pounds of myrrh and aloes (v.15)—because she loved Jesus. She wept because she loved.
Forget Fear — Matthew 28:1-10
“Do not be afraid” (v.10).
The women who went to the tomb early in the morning were afraid because they just saw their Lord crucified. But when they saw their resurrected Lord, everything changed: “Jesus met them and said, ‘Greetings!’ [Rejoice!] And they came up and took hold of His feet and worshiped Him. Then Jesus said to them, Do not be afraid” (vv.9-10). Do you know what command is repeated the most in the Bible? It is “Fear not!” or “Do not be afraid.” Here Jesus say this to you today, and know that He is with you.
The Proof of Peace — John 20:19-23
“Peace be with you” (vv.19, 21).
While the disciples were scared and locked in a room, “Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, ‘Peace be with you.’ When He had said this, He showed them His hands and His side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord” (vv.19-20). In a world that doesn’t know peace, the “Prince of Peace” (Isa. 9:6) offers us His peace (Jn. 14:27). And like His disciples, He offers this peace through His scars, for Jesus made peace “by the blood of His cross” (Col. 1:20). Peace with God provides the peace of God!
The Certainty of the Scriptures — Luke 24:13-35
“O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into His glory?”
Jesus appeared to two of His followers, Cleopas and Mary (v.18), as they were heading home from Jerusalem to Emmaus. They were in disbelief, even after hearing from the angel that Jesus was raised. But once Jesus met them on the road and showed them the certainty of the cross in the Scriptures, their foolishness turned to faith: “their eyes were opened, and they recognized Him” (v.31). When Jesus opened the Scriptures to them, their hearts burned within them (v.32). Is the same true for you? Will you trust and believe the Scriptures, or foolishly live in disbelief?
Surety for Skeptics — Luke 24:36-49
“Why are you troubled, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? See My hands and My feet, that it is I Myself. Touch Me, and see” (vv.38-39).
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Despite Jesus’ numerous predictions, when the disciples first heard about the resurrection they were “startled, “frightened,” “troubled,” and doubtful (vv.37-38). In order to convince the disciples that He rose from the dead and was alive, He told them to look at and touch His scars. But they needed further understanding, and so Jesus “opened their minds to understand the Scriptures (v.45). Thomas wasn’t with the disciples when they first saw Christ, so he doubted their message. Although a skeptic, when Thomas came to Jesus, he surely believed when he touched His scars. The scars and the Scriptures provide surety for skeptics.
Forgiveness for the Fallen — John 21:15-19
“Do you love Me?” (v.17).
Like a rock, Peter fell and sank fast; he denied that he even knew Jesus three times. But after His resurrection, Jesus restored him. For the three times Peter denied Him, Jesus asks Him three times if he loves Him. Jesus met Peter right where He is at and told him, “Feed My lambs….Tend My Sheep….Feed My sheep….Follow Me.” Like Peter, maybe you have fallen into sin and you need to reconfirm your love for Jesus. Go to Him today and let Him restore and forgive you as you follow Him commandments.
Christ’s Commission — Matthew 28:18-20
Jesus said to His disciples, “As the Father has sent Me, even so I am sending you” (John 20:21). As the One with all authority in heaven and on earth, Jesus concludes His messages with a clear commission: preach the gospel. The disciples weren’t to do this in their own power or strength. Right before He ascended into heaven, Jesus said, “you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses” (Acts 1:8). Be a witness—tell others about what Jesus did!
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May these last words of Christ have a lasting impact upon you. These conversations were game-changers for the disciples, and they still are today!
“All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”