Jesus appears to His disciples and sends them out to change the world. What might He give them to do their world changing work. A commentary by John Piper, or a heart touching book from Max Lucado? He could of given them a King James edition of the Bible. No, Jesus sends them out with what they Heard Him speak and what they have seen with their eyes.
The risen Christ comes to them and says, “see my hands and feet, touch me.” The things they have heard and seen empowered by the Holy Spirit are all the tools they have.
They saw Jesus walk on water, heal the lame, raise the dead, and have now seen Jesus risen from the dead. They have heard His parables, listened to His teaching for three years. But all these things are in their head and hearts, they have no videos, no transcripts, or recordings, just what is in their head and hearts.
We also are sent to hurting world by Jesus. While we have many tools that we have as we go.
First is the Holy Spirit. It is the Spirit that empowers us, teaches us, uses the other tools we are given, to apply them to our every situation.
Second Jesus sends us out with what we have seen and heard. Locked up in your head and heart is what you have learned from God’s word. You also have all the things you have seen God do. The ways you have seen Him touch your lives and the lives of others.
The third thing is motivation. Do you notice that Jesus still bears the wounds of crucifixion when He comes to them? In Revelation Jesus is presented as the lamb who is slain. Jesus bears the scars of the cross. Jesus could with less than a word remove those scars, yet He keeps them. I have wondered why?
You might think it is to make us feel guilty, see what you’ve done. I think they are they to remind us of how much He loves us and how much we are forgiven. My friend Don has a carpenters level given to Him by his dad. It’s old and beat up yet has gone to every job with him. Many years ago when his first grandchild was 2 years old, his grandson picked up a hammer and broke the glass in one of the windows of the level. Don carried that level each day to work for two reasons. First to remember his father who gave it to him and second to remember Cole his grandson who broke it. That scar on his level reminded him of his love for his grandson. Jesus’ scars remind us of how much he loves us, how much he has forgiven.
Over lent we talked about forgiveness on Wednesday nights. One thing we left out was the scars left behind. A scar can be physical or emotional. When we see the scars our sin has left behind, we are often wanting to remove or erase them. But maybe the scars are there to remind us how much we have been forgiven, to remember how much we are loved, by the person who carries them.
What scars do you carry, what reminders of your sin or mistakes do you have, maybe it’s something that could remind you not of your sin or mistake but of the love of the person who has forgiven you for them.
As you look at Jesus’ hand and feet don’t focus on the pain you have caused focus on the depth of the love that has forgiven you.