Monday, November 1, 2021
19-20 Later on that day, the disciples had gathered together but, fearful of the Jews, had locked all the doors in the house. Jesus entered, stood among them, and said, “Peace to you.” Then he showed them his hands and side.
20-21 The disciples, seeing the Master with their own eyes, were awestruck. So Jesus repeated his greeting: “Peace to you. Just as the Father sent me, I send you.”
22-23 Then, he took a deep breath and breathed into them. “Receive the Holy Spirit,” he said. “If you forgive someone’s sins, they’re gone for good. If you don’t forgive sins, what are you going to do with them?”
-John 20:19-23 The Message
Jesus among His Disciples
Verse 19: Now, when it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and when the doors were shut where the disciples were together due to fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in their midst, and *said to them, “Peace be to you.”
Verse 20: And when He had said this, He showed them both His hands and His side. The disciples then rejoiced when they saw the Lord.
Verse 21: So Jesus said to them again, “Peace be to you; just as the Father has sent Me, I also send you.”
Verse 21 study: Jesus identified himself with his Father. Jesus also told the disciples the authority he did his work. He passed the job to his disciples of spreading the gospel of salvation around the world. For any reason God asks you to do something, remember this:
- Your authority comes from God.
- Jesus demonstrated by words and actions how to accomplish the job he has given you.
As the Father sent Jesus, Jesus sent his followers and you.
Verse 22: And when He had said this, He breathed on them and *said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit.
Verse 22 study: At the time of the Pentecost in Acts 2, the Holy Spirit may have been a unique filling for the disciples. A foretaste of what believers would experience and forever after. To do the work of God, we need guidance and the power of the Holy Spirit. The essential thing here is to avoid doing his work on our own strength.
There is life in the breath of God. Genesis 2:7 reminds us that man was created but didn’t come alive until God breathed the breath of life into him. God’s first breath made man different from all other forms of creation. Now, through the breath of Jesus, God put in eternal, spiritual life. With this inbreathing came the power to do God’s will on earth.
Verse 23: If you forgive the sins of any, their sins have been forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they have been retained.”
Verse 23 study: Jesus gave the disciples their Spirit-powered and Spirit-guided mission. Preaching the Good News about Jesus so people’s sins might be forgiven. The disciples didn’t have the power to forgive sins as God was the only one to forgive sins. But Jesus did give them the privilege to tell new believers that their sins have been forgiven because they accepted Jesus’ message. All believers have the same privilege. We can announce the forgiveness of sin with certainty when we find repentance and faith.
Father, it takes courage to do your work. It also takes your strength to get your work done. Let us remember that the work you give us is upon your strength and not our own. Thank you for taking the load to help get the Good News out. In Jesus’ name. Amen!