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Jesus resurrected November 10 Chronological Bible Study

Timeline. Map. Go to today’s Bible reading: Matthew 28:11-15; Luke 24:13-43; John 20:19-31; Matthew 28:16-20; John 21:1-25; Luke 24:44-53; Mark 16:9-20

From Despair to Peace

When your world seems to be unraveling and all your hopes and dreams seem to vanish, where can you find peace? We might find comfort in the arms of a loved one, but ultimate peace is found in Jesus Christ. We can each have a personal relationship with him by accepting his sacrifice as a payment for our sins and trusting in him for salvation. “‘There is no peace,’ says the LORD, ‘for the wicked’” (Isaiah 48:22, NIV). The wicked do not know God; they live by their own wits.

When Jesus was raised from the dead, a violent earthquake shook the ground, and an angel, as white as light, came from heaven and rolled the stone away from the tomb. The guards were paralyzed with fear. After recovering, they ran and reported to the high priest what had happened. The high priests paid them to say the body was stolen (Matthew 28:2-4, 11-15). They made a decision based on fear. They lived by their own wits. There is no peace for the wicked.

Death is disillusioning to people. Many times it comes unexpectedly, and people lose their faith. Jesus’ disciples were no different. In such circumstances what brings believers peace? Sometimes in times of grief and /or disillusionment, peace comes from a new understanding of God’s higher purposes. Jesus' appearance on the road to Emmaus illustrates this.

Two of Jesus’ disciples were on the road to Emmaus when Jesus joined them. They were so filled with grief that they did not even recognize him. Strange reports of some women and two of his apostles, Simon Peter and John left them confused. The reports were saying Jesus’ tomb was empty, and that they had seen a vision of angels saying Jesus was alive. They wondered what it all meant. After they explained to the strange companion their confusion over the recent events, Jesus chastised them for their unbelief and explained the plan and purposes of God. He traced the Scriptures from the times of Moses to the present, showing them the need for the Messiah to suffer and then be raised to life. They did not recognize Jesus, however, until he had supper with them and broke the bread, giving thanks. Their eyes were then opened as they saw the scars from the nail prints in his hands (or more probably his wrists, which were considered part of his hands and would have better born the weight of his body on the cross). Immediately after Jesus left, they ran and told the other disciples, “It is true! The Lord has risen and has appeared to Simon,” (Luke 24:34, NIV). The disciples received a wake up call that brought them peace and great joy.

Death and persecution bring fear. The disciples had been hiding in fear of possible persecution from the Jews or the arrest of Roman soldiers. Jesus knew they needed to see him to give them peace and courage. After all, they were going to be the first generation of witnesses to his resurrection. Do we need peace and courage? Let’s draw near to God and ask God for a fresh sense of his presence in our lives.

How do we overcome doubts? Thomas, (“Doubting Thomas” as he is often referred to), was not with the rest of the disciples when Jesus appeared to them. He said he would not believe Jesus was alive again unless he saw and touched Jesus for himself. There are many people like that. Jesus helped Thomas to believe by appearing to him, but Jesus said, “blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe” (John 20:29, NIV). We do not need to see Jesus for ourselves; we just need to believe the testimony of the Scriptures written about him and the testimony of those lives which were changed by him. We Americans have never seen our first president, George Washington; and yet, we believe in him because of what was written about him. How is that any different? Jesus was seen at several occasions and by over 500 people during the next forty days. Many believers have given their lives for the witness of Christ. People do not normally give their lives for a lie. Their witness testifies to the life changing power of Jesus Christ. Knowing that Jesus has been present in the circumstances of so many Christians for almost 2,000 years gives us confidence that he will be present in our circumstances. His presence gives us confidence and peace.

After our confidence is renewed, if we come to understand at least part of the plans and purposes of God, it helps us to chart a new course or at least to take the next step. Jesus gave a Great Commission to his eleven disciples, and it has chartered the course of his disciples and the church for almost 2,000 years. True believers in Jesus Christ should follow these instructions until he returns:

Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age (Matthew 28:19-20, NIV).

Has Jesus Christ saved and changed us? God’s plan is for us to share our testimony of his grace so that others might believe. We are his disciples, his witnesses.

Though Jesus left and went back into heaven, he gave believers the Holy Spirit to be with them. He is our comforter, and he guides us into understanding the will and ways of God from the Bible. If we read it, we will find the comfort and guidance we need in all situations.

Lessons to live by:

  • When our world seems to be unraveling and all our hopes and dreams seem to vanish, we can find peace in Jesus. (more...)
  • There is no peace for the wicked.
  • Sometimes in times of grief and / or disillusionment peace comes from a new understanding of the higher purposes of God.
  • Do we need peace and courage? Let’s draw near to God, and ask him for a fresh sense of his presence in our lives.
  • Knowing that Jesus has been present in the circumstances of so many Christians for 2,000 years gives us confidence that he will be present in our circumstances.
  • God's plan for Christians is to share the gospel and to disciple them to become Christ followers.
  • The Holy Spirit is our comforter and guide. He guides us into understanding the will and ways of God from the Bible.

Note: if you are interested in more information on why the resurrection of Christ is important, you may go to our November 29 Bible study

Today’s Bible Memory Verse:

Matthew 28:20b “And surely I [Jesus] am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (NIV)

praying girl Write a private prayer response to today’s Bible study:

Please send your comments to mtbiblestudies@gmail.com

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