19 Then, the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in the midst, and said to them, “Peace be with you.” 20 When He had said this, He showed them His hands and His side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord.
Jesus having been crucified dead and buried – arose and stood in the midst of His followers.
It is not new to anyone at all familiar with The Christian Faith to realise that all Christians believe that Christ Rose from the dead.
And not only arose but appeared to various disciples at various times before eventually – many of them saw Him ascend upwards into the realm of the heaven of heavens. A spiritual dimension beyond the natural eye.
It is difficult for us to describe exactly, the bodily form of The Resurrected Lord Jesus Christ – when He appeared to His disciples. It is the dimension of the spirit manifested visibly. There is a mystery regarding it.
*NB: [Did He ascend to the Father just before this? He tells one woman not to touch Him, and yet Thomas to put his fingers into His scars. Food for thought and another post.]
It is not the purpose of this post to go into this phenomena.
But that He appeared before them is beyond doubt.
I want to think for a moment, of not only what He showed, (His resurrected self), but of what He said:
“Peace be with you.”
There are all kinds of things that disturb our peace. And let’s be honest we all like to live a peaceful life.
Except maybe for those who have never known peace in the first place. Or those so controlled by their lower nature that peace is something they neither know in experience or pursue.
Here is a mix of biblical exhortations concerning peace:
Seek peace and pursue it…
Therefore let us pursue the things which make for peace …
Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord:…
Let him turn away from evil and do good; Let him seek peace and pursue it…
And finally what Jesus said to His followers:
My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
There is one source of true peace: Jesus Christ Himself. A relationship with Him brings inner peace, because of sins forgiven and acceptance into His spiritual kingdom, through fellowship with Him.
For any Christian to pretend that they never lose their peace, or are never troubled would be a lie. Indeed Paul the apostle who knew the peace of God perpetually in his life, nevertheless did not see the need to pretend in order to make his case for God-given peace.
He says: (II Corinthians 7/5)
5 For indeed, when we came to Macedonia, our bodies had no rest, but we were troubled on every side. Outside were conflicts, inside were fears. 6 Nevertheless God, who comforts the downcast, comforted us by the coming of Titus…
Inside were fears. Fear attempts to disturb/destroy our peace. He finishes off, however, with the great truth: NEVERTHELESS – GOD!
When there’s nothing else to cling to and, as the song says: ‘When our time has come…’ We have the promised and abiding peace that tells us that all will be well with our soul and spirit.
Peace returns – [as an old female saint I once knew would say] – when we: Let go and let God.
There will always be things that seek to disturb our peace, rob us of our peace, distract us from abiding in Christ – but the great truth is – we have been given His Peace in the first place, just like He delivered it to His disciples in His resurrection power, as He came into the room, having risen from the dead!
Thank God for the peace and assurance that we can meet Him without the fear of loss.
Even so come Lord Jesus!
* JOHN 20 17 Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.