March 24, 2023 – Friday
John 20:19-20 NIV
19 On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jewish leaders, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!”
20 After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord.
Continuing on from yesterday where first Mary Magdalene discovered Jesus’ body was missing from the tomb where He had been buried. Then Peter and John rushing to confirm what Mary saw and John believed He had risen. They went back and reported to the other disciples what they had discovered.
Then in verses 11-18, we read of Mary’s encounter with two angels and then later with the risen Jesus Himself. As a result, she returned to the disciples and shared news of her encounter with Jesus, I have seen the Lord! You might think that they erupted in shouts of joy, but if they did we are not told of it. Instead, what we read in our first verse for today implies they did not believe Mary or simply did not know what to make of what she shared with them.
Look where they were in this verse, 19 On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jewish leaders, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” It was still the first day of His resurrection and they were in a locked room! Why? Because they feared the Jewish leaders. And it was at this time that in spite of the locked doors, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!”
I can only surmise they were shocked into silence as no comments are provided. That is until we read in the next verse, 20 After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord. Jesus not only appeared to them in a locked room, saying Peace be with you, but also showed them His hands and side. From this point on, it is clear they believed for this verse ends with The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord. They had proof in looking at his hands and side, the crucified Jesus was indeed risen and with them. They may not yet have understood all that this meant, but they knew He was alive – no longer dead.
Before Jesus left them for a while, 21 Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.” 22 And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive anyone’s sins, their sins are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.” Jesus gave them the task to continue the work He had begun in sharing the good news. Then He breathed on them and said, Receive the Holy Spirit. This seems very akin to Genesis 2:7 when God breathed into man’s nostrils the breath or Spirit of Life.
Now with the Holy Spirit the disciples could forgive sins or could they, as only God can forgive sins? Matthew Poole writes about this saying, The question therefore amongst divines is, Whether Christ in this text hath given authority to his ministers actually to discharge men of the guilt of their sins; or only to declare unto them, that if their repentance and faith be true, their sins are really forgiven them? Like Poole, I find the latter to be the most reasonable. And I find it comparable what Jesus said in Luke 24:46-47, 46 He told them, “This is what is written: The Messiah will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, 47 and repentance for the forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.
Bottom Line: There are many reasons to believe Jesus rose on the third day, especially after He appeared to His apostles and the disciples that were with them.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, Thank You that You love us so much You sent Your Son to pay the price for our sins. And for ensuring enough evidence was left behind so that we can believe even 2,000 years later. – In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Riley D. Driver – Pastor
Calvary Chapel of Dayton