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From the Minister


Thought for the Day Saturday 25th April


There is one more recorded appearance of Jesus before his final appearance to the disciples on Ascension Day. This Appearance is recorded in Matthew 28:16 – 20.

The eleven disciples have gone to a mountain in Galilee, a place where Jesus had told them to go, a place where he would meet with them again.

When Jesus appeared, some of the disciples worshipped him, but others doubted.

My first thought for the day is that even when confronted with all the evidence of the resurrection, some of the disciples still doubted. There are times in the lives of most Christians when, despite all the evidence of their experience, they have doubts. For some, the choices that they made in their Christian lives were expensive. Following the calling of God, some gave up glowing careers that would have brought them worldly riches. For others, the time they have devoted to God’s work has meant that they have had less time to spend with their families. When their children have grown there is a sense of loss for the time that will not come again. For me in times of doubt (and I guess it is the same for some others) the question comes “have the sacrifices been in vain?” But then I think back, and even in those times of doubt I realise that life has been good, and it may not have been anywhere near as good if I had made different choices. Just as easily as the doubts come, I find that if I just keep going, reading the Bible, praying, sharing fellowship and worship, they disappear and are replaced by the knowledge of the risen Jesus at work.

The second thought that comes to me from this passage is that it is here, among the worship and the doubt, that Jesus chooses to tell his disciples that it is now up to them to carry the work on. The passage is known as: ‘The Great Commission’, and that is just what it is. The disciples have returned to their homes in Galilee. In modern day terms, we would see a church of eleven people called to evangelise a small town, as being a difficult task. These eleven men are sent not to evangelise the town that they know and live in, but they are given the world as their mission field.

We who know Jesus today share the commission, and although we may feel weak and unfitted for the job, although we may say we are too small and have little influence, the truth is there are more than eleven of us.

The appearances of Jesus that we have been looking at happened over a period of forty days. The last one that we can date happened on the first Sunday after resurrection day. I have compressed the appearances into a short time frame. I will stop trying to follow the disciples now and return to them on Thursday May 21st – Ascension Day.

Steve Wallis

Newbridge Baptist Church
Llanafan Road, Newbridge, Powys, LD1 6LY
Telephone The Minister: 01597 860185
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