Jesus appears to many people and concludes His Time on Earth (Journeys 61-64)

It is time to wrap up this series on the Journey with Christ. It is time to discuss the final things He had done on Earth, and the progress of His Ascension. Jesus was just crucified and He resurrected. Now for His Appearance to His Disciples. The Scriptures we include for this discussion are Mark 16:12-20; Luke 24:13-53; 1 Corinthians 15:5-7; John 20:19-21:25; Matthew 28:16-20; Acts 1:3-12.

Sunday, toward evening, Jesus meets two Disciples, Cleopas and another, on their way to Emmaus. Jesus joins them and He goes along with them. They discuss the events of that day concerning Jesus (not knowing this is Jesus). It wasn’t until the “breaking of the bread” that the eyes of these two Disciples “were opened and they knew Him.”

Jesus is on the road to Emmaus from Jerusalem where He joins two sorrowful Disciples that were along the path. However, they did not recognize Him. As they explained their sadness, they expressed surprise that He had not heard about the crucifixion of Jesus. These men believed in Jesus, even though they did not understand the work He came to do. They did hear of the reports that the tomb was empty and that He was Resurrected.

Jesus then taught them a proper understanding of the Messiah and the Mission He conducted by referring them to Scripture. The Messiah had to suffer to enter His Glory. The death and Resurrection of Jesus would be brought to completion per the pattern that God had been working through the history of His People by His Messengers.

When they almost arrived at Emmaus, Jesus and the two Disciples stopped for a meal in the evening. Jesus gave thanks and broke the bread to bring the meal, to which, they recognized who He was. He immediately disappeared from them, which was a mysterious nature of His Resurrection Body. This caused them to want to tell people about it!

The two Disciples return to Jerusalem to tell the other Disciples about seeing Jesus. Apparently, Jesus also visited Peter at some point during that day as well!

The Disciples were marveling together about Jesus, until He suddenly appears before them in the room, even though the doors were locked. This made them think they were seeing a ghost among them. However, Jesus showed His tangible Body of flesh and bones complete with scars of crucifixion. He also ate fish and showed them of His normal functions of the body. He hopes they would receive the Holy Ghost and the remittance of sins through His breathing upon them. Sadly, Thomas missed out on this blessing.

The next appearances took place a week after the Day of Resurrection. He appeared to the Disciples with Thomas present. Jesus appeared again, even though the doors were shut, and said peace unto them. Of course, Jesus would be returning to the Father, and He wanted to make sure their faith was strong enough (including Thomas’). Through believing in Jesus as the Messiah, they could have Eternal Life.

During this, He tells Thomas to behold His hands with his finger, and behold His side with his hand thrusting upon it that he should not be faithless but believe. Thomas admitted “My Lord and my God.” His faith was true.

At the Sea of Galilee

The Disciples have returned to Galilee to await Jesus, and seven of them spent the night fishing on Lake Galilee unsuccessfully. Jesus appeared at the shore and instructed them; however, they did not recognize Him, but they did as He said. They caught a large amount of fish from listening to Him. Due to prior incidence of catching large numbers of fish because of Jesus’ instruction, John recognized Jesus. The Disciples were reminded of His Authority and their dependence upon Him, as well as being reminded of the care He had for them, especially by His preparation of their breakfast.

Peter boasted of his love for Jesus is better than the other Disciples; and yet, he publicly denied Christ thrice. Therefore, he was asked publicly before them about his love for Jesus three times, to which was a reminder to him of the danger of pride. Jesus’ conversation with Peter showed the others that he had forgiven him, and he even gave Peter the responsibility of taking care of His People through the difficulty of the Church’s beginnings. He was to be the leader of the group for the Church, and would need more love for Jesus than the others.

If Peter desired to follow Jesus, he could no longer be a free fisherman, but would have to be one of constant sacrifice and hard work in caring for the Lord’s Flock. If Peter truly wanted to do this for Jesus, he would be captured and killed because of his loyalty to Christ. As far as John goes, there is no account of how his life would end. John noted that this is not all of the account of Jesus’ life, but that what he gave was the testimony of an eyewitness, and was to be believed!

Jesus took His Disciples on one of the mountains there in Galilee, to which they could look out to the next part of the Kingdom’s mission, which are the Gentile nations and beyond. There were as many as five hundred present at this meeting at once. Anyway, Jesus’ short (3.5 year ministry) was so limited as to Israel; however, the ministry that is passed to the Disciples is to go to all nations without any distinction. His Power would be in their grasp so that they may be preserved through dangers and perform the remarkable works He has empowered them to do!

This all was to also help establish the Church, as His Followers preached the Gospel, baptized the believers, and taught the converts to understand and follow His Teachings. The converts would then hopefully pass the teaching on to others and this would continue unto worldwide expansion. This would be evidence of the work of Christ upon His People!

Jesus appears to James, who is a witness to His Resurrection and can confirm it! Jesus then gave the Disciples a similar teaching that He gave the two on the road to Emmaus, to which they were witnesses of His Ministry, death, and Resurrection; therefore, they were entrusted of taking the message to all nations. His Spirit would equip them, so that they would be His representatives in the world.

As they preach the Gospel, people would either believe it and be forgiven, or reject it and suffer judgment later because of it. He alive courtesy of many infallible proofs, for He has also proved that the Kingdom of God is nigh! Jesus therefore told them not to spend time thinking about things that God didn’t intend for them to know, but to go and tell people everywhere He is Alive and Triumphant! Jesus is going away and would no longer physically be with them; therefore, the Spirit would come and live within them so they could carry out the work.

The time between Jesus’ Resurrection to the Ascension was about six weeks, and during this time, He taught His Disciples (Apostles) well on the Kingdom of God so they are prepared!

Jesus ensured the Apostles were confident, so that He did not leave them completely confused. He attempted so much to teach them on what they must understand about the Work He was sent to do based on God’s Will, the Kingdom of God, and what they were to do in speaking about Him. They accompanied Jesus, therefore, to the village on the slopes of Mount Olivet just outside Jerusalem and Bethany. Jesus left His Apostles, to which He promised them that one day He would Return! Soon, the Apostles returned to Jerusalem joyfully praising God and receiving the Holy Ghost a few days later as promised by Jesus! {“Confirming the word with signs following” (Mark 16:20b).}

What we can learn from the Lord here

By faith, we believe in Him who has Resurrected, yes, Jesus Christ! We who have received His Spirit can believe upon by faith even though we have not seen Him. Scriptures and His Apostles can confirm His Resurrection. May He be Glorified Always! Let us be continually joyful of His Glorious Appearance unto us, because He has gained redemption for us through His Marvelous Work on the cross in His sacrifice! He wants us to know of His Love for us. Let us receive and not miss the breathing of the Holy Ghost upon us and the remittance of sins.

If we already have it, we must tell others they may receive the same, so that they might be saved and be given Eternal Life as a reward! If we intend to follow Christ, and do His Good Will for our lives, we must be willing to go through troubles; however, He will continue to help us and serve us to show us that He cares! Let us be empowered to go and preach the Gospel to all nations, doing what God leads us to do! We must preach unto others whether we know if they would believe, because we are instructed to teach and tell others about Him, not ponder what people might think or ponder about things the Lord doesn’t need us to know. We are to preach about Him and Him only so that people might be saved and receive the gift of Eternal Life!

Jesus is confident that we will be able to do what He has called us to do to fulfill His Will for our lives in preaching about Him, which is why He has sent us the Comforter, who is our teacher! We shall be here continually doing His Work in preaching and teaching about Him so that people might be redeemed of sin and be given Eternal Life so that they too can share in the joy of the Kingdom of God, Hallelujah!

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