“Peace be with you.” Both Luke and John record these as Jesus’ first words to the disciples after the resurrection. (Click here for the passage from John.) It’s easy to picture the disciples agitated and anxious, and Jesus telling them to be at peace.
But there is much more. Jesus is not just telling the disciples to “calm down.” The language is really a broad assurance that all is well at every level. “We’re good!” might be a better colloquial equivalent.
Beyond their sadness at Jesus’ crucifixion, their fear that they might be next, and their confusion about the reports of the empty tomb lurked the reality that virtually all of them had abandoned Jesus in some way. Judas’ betrayal and Peter’s denial are infamous, but all were hiding out in fear and it appears that John alone was willing to be present at the crucifixion. Unsurprisingly, the women fared better.
Jesus assured them that they are not rejected! And more than not rejected, there is no awkward conversation to be have. Jesus’ love and understanding bridges even that betrayal and abandonment and all truly is well.
Do you worry about the burdens you bring to faith? Do you fear inviting Jesus into those dark places that you don’t want anyone to see? Jesus’ appearance to the disciples is a resounding affirmation that all is well, indeed — for them and for us!
Walking in Easter faith, in confidence of Jesus and His resurrection!
This column appears in the April 19, 2020 edition of St. John’s eNews. Click here for the complete issue.
If you are reading this at a different time, you may click here for the current eNews.