Thursday 12 July 2012

Bible Book:

"While they were talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, 'Peace be with you.'" (v. 36)

Luke 24:36-43 Thursday 12 July 2012


In the aftermath of Jesus' crucifixion, the disciples wereconfused, grief stricken, and in fear of their lives. Over a periodof time, stories started to be told of women, individuals and smallgroupings of disciples glimpsing the risen Jesus. It was suchwonderful news, such amazing hope; the disciples could hardlybelieve it was true.

In this passage, for the first time, after the crucifixion,Jesus appeared to all of the disciples, gathered together. He stoodamong them and offered them "Peace". The Hebrew word for peace is'shalom' and conveys well-being and completeness to the wholecommunity. In Luke's Gospel the word is used to communicatesalvation, wholeness and healing. Jesus who has been crucified, isnow risen, and continues to have the power to offer the disciplessalvation. Death has not overcome Jesus' divine power.

A deep sense of peace - a peace passing all rational understand- is what the disciples need to move through their grief, to renewtheir hope, faith, and strength.

Jesus understood that disciples also needed to realise that hisresurrection and risen power is were real, had a physical realityin this world and life, and was not a vague spiritual abstraction.He invited them to touch him (verse 39) and he asked them to givehim a piece of boiled fish and he took and ate it (verses 41-43).His risen power was not just the wishful thinking of grievingfriends, carrying things on in his memory. The risen Jesus has adeep real power to bring salvation in the here and now of a bodilypresent world, and in our present moment.

To Ponder

  • The disciples' belief in the resurrection of Jesus doesn'thappen all at once. It began in a number of reported odd meetings,before Jesus finally appeared to them all together. When you lookback at dark times in your life or that of your community, when Godseemed to be absent, in what ways has your recovery of hope beenpiecemeal, or odd glimpses which have gradually gathered momentumand become substantial and real?
  • When have you experienced the deep peace of shalom that Jesusoffered the disciples? What happened?
  • Why did Jesus think it so important for the disciples tobelieve that he was physically risen, and more than a ghost orspirit?
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