He Has Risen!
As He was beginning His earthly ministry, Jesus visited John the Baptist, who publicly announced concerning Him, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29, 36). Two of John’s disciples heard this stunning announcement and decided to check Him out.
As they followed Jesus, He noticed, turned to them, and asked, “What do you seek?”
Their answer was interesting. “Rabbi (which translated means ‘Teacher’), where are you staying?”
“Come, and you will see,” was His invitation to them. They took Him up on His offer and ended up spending the day with Him (v. 39).
Warning: If you’re happy with things as they are, spending a day with Jesus isn’t a good idea! Having a private audience with Him for an entire day, face to face, IS going to change you. Radically. I suppose the conversation could be superficial at first:
“What were You thinking when You made porcupines? The zebra’s stripes? How many stars are there? How about galaxies?” From there, perhaps you would segue into questions concerning Jesus and God: “How old were You when You first realized who You actually were? What does God look like?” At some point, however, you would no doubt transition into personal questions concerning yourself and your future. Everyone thinks about purpose. Experts tell us the desire to know our purpose is one of the strongest desires we humans have. Believing we have a purpose is directly related to self-esteem, self-worth, and ultimately, personal fulfillment.
Did these two men ask Jesus about this? We don’t know for certain. We do know that one of them was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother (v. 40), who became one of Christ’s twelve disciples. Something he heard while with Jesus impacted him so greatly he decided on a career change! Destiny flows from days spent with Jesus.
Another revelation Andrew received that day had to do with, not his own identity, but Christ’s. He began the day by referring to Jesus as a teacher (”Rabbi”); he ended it by calling Him the Messiah. “He found first his own brother Simon, and said to him, ‘We have found the Messiah’ (which translated means Christ)” (John 1:41).
Andrew received the two most important revelations needed for a successful life that day: who Christ is, which is the key to unlocking everything else in life, and who he was. When those two things are known, destiny is unlocked. The purpose of anything is found in the mind of its creator, not in itself. True self-identity comes from identifying and knowing the One who made us. You’ll never really find yourself until you find Him. Andrew found both that day.
No wonder we have an identity issue in our nation, we have robbed a generation of knowing their Creator. Those who reject their Maker sentence themselves to a wasted life. Seeking self-awareness apart from God is like a journey without a destination. Watching this saddens and angers me deeply.
I do not enjoy talking about judgment. But all of Christ’s Words are on the table. He had great anger toward those who abused children. “But if anyone abuses one of these little ones who believe in Me, it would be better for him to have a heavy boulder tied around his neck and be hurled into the deepest sea than to face the punishment he deserves!” (Matthew 18:6 TPT). Scary words from the Supreme Judge. There will be a day of reckoning.
At the end of Christ’s ministry, two more of His followers had a revelatory encounter with Him. The meeting occurred just after the Cross and, though they didn’t know it, the Resurrection. To say their world had just turned topsy-turvy would be a gross understatement. To have discovered, lived with, and traveled with Jesus for three years, only to lose Him, would be life’s cruelest injustice.
These two men had heard earlier in the day that Christ had risen from the dead. But, really, who would believe two grief-stricken ladies claiming to have been visited by angels? That’s quite a stretch. And those supposed angels informed the women that Christ rose from the dead? Delusional. As they walked the seven-mile journey from Jerusalem to Emmaus, they were discussing this too-good-to-be-true report and all that had transpired over the past few days. They were discouraged, confused, and disillusioned.
That’s when He arrived. “And it came about that while they were conversing and discussing, Jesus Himself approached, and began traveling with them. But their eyes were prevented from recognizing Him” (Luke 24:15-16).
“What are you discussing?” He asked. As if He didn’t know!
They gave Jesus a brief summary, expressing their surprise that He would even have to ask. “What else would we be discussing?” was their inference. It seems everyone in Jerusalem could think of little else than what had transpired with Christ the last few days, since so many of them had thought He might be the long-awaited Messiah. They spoke to Him of their devastation and also of the rumor that He had risen from the dead.
Jesus, His identity still hidden from them, “Explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures” (v. 27), including the fact He needed to suffer and die.
Wouldn’t you like to hear that recording! When I get to heaven, the video room will be one of my first stops.
Though they still didn’t know it was Jesus, His words were impacting their hearts. “Were not our hearts burning within us while He was speaking to us… explaining the Scriptures to us?” they stated (v. 32).
When they reached their destination, the men pled with Jesus to spend the night. The Lord agreed to do so, and during dinner, “He took the bread and blessed it, and breaking it, He began giving it to them. And their eyes were opened, and they recognized Him” (vv. 30-31). He disappeared from their sight at that moment. Sleep was now out of the question. So they hurried back the seven miles to Jerusalem with the good news: Christ was, indeed, risen.
I find it more than a coincidence that after hiding from these men who He was, the Lord chose to release the revelation “in the breaking of the bread” (v. 35). After all, He was the “bread of life” that had been “broken” for them (see John 6:33, 35, 48-51), and they could now partake of His resurrection life. Was the timing of the revelation His way of saying to them, “The sustenance you need is now available? Sup with Me (Revelation 3:20), and I will reveal to you the things you need to know?”
I believe so. I also believe He is saying the same to us. We can eat the bread of life by feeding on His words (Matthew 4:4). Eat them. As you do, revelation will come, and He will unveil Himself to you, just as He did these two men. At some point, your Creator will also reveal to you your purpose and destiny, just as He did for Andrew.
Spend a day with Jesus…He is risen.
Pray with me:
Father, we just celebrated our Lord’s victory over sin, death, hell, and the grave. He triumphed fully and now ever lives to be our Apostle, Mediator, High Priest, and King. Thank You for this amazing, costly, and wonderful plan.
As we walk with You, we pray for a greater revelation of Christ’s victory. We are one with Him spiritually, infused with His nature, more than conquerors, able to do all things through His strength. Increase revelation of these things, but also that we are His Ekklesia on earth, assigned to represent Him. Awaken us to this! May the revelation be ever-increasing.
And we continue, as we always will, to declare that Holy Spirit is now orchestrating history’s greatest revival. We bind the work of demonic powers attempting to stop this, enforcing Christ’s magnificent victory at Calvary. Come in greater power, Kingdom of God. Will of God, be accomplished. We pray these things in the risen Messiah’s name, Yeshua.
We decree that death was conquered and has lost its sting.
Click on the link below to watch the full video.
Portions of today’s post were taken from my book The Pleasure of His Company, published by Baker Books.