“… they still disbelieved for joy, and wondered …” (Luke 24:41) RSV
Each week we are observing how people have difficulty recognising the risen Jesus. No longer is he recognised purely by his outward appearance. Each person knows him by faith, not by sight. Our passage is no exception. In Luke, it says, “… they still disbelieved for joy, and wondered …” (v.41). Why should there be any reason to “disbelieve”?
Certainly, they were not expecting the resurrection of their dead hero. They had not believed his prediction that he would rise on the third day. To see him standing before them was a wonder, since the impossible had happened. But they also “disbelieved” (v.41) because they had no idea that their God could do such wonderful things for them. How often are our minds filled with what we expect God to do and what we think he can do? We can so easily limit God’s goodness. He really can do impossible things for us. They are not too good to be true.
John gives a more definite response from the disciples: “Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord.” (John 20:20) What a joy and gladness it was that all was well. The end of Jesus on the cross was not the end. The death of Jesus had become the gateway through to something far better. This applies to our lives, both in this age (on earth) and in the age to come (in heaven). God’s nature is to break through and do wonderful things that make us glad, oh so glad!
No one is too bad or too lost, and no situation is too far gone that God cannot turn it around. “With God all things are possible” (Matthew 19:26).
You are a great and mighty God, doing more than I can ask or think. Increase my faith and trust, and let me see you work. Amen.
- Note the three occasions that Jesus predicted his resurrection.
2. What made King Darius so glad?