Monday, April 21, 2014

Following the Risen Christ

Luke 24:13-53 - men were downcast.  They thought that Jesus was the one they had expected and looked for for the last 1500 years.  They were confident he was the Christ, the Messiah.  Then he was dead!

On one hand, the disciples had advantage over us - ie:  they SAW, heard, touched the Risen Lord!!
However, people continue to encounter the Risen Lord even now - usually in combination of 1) the Word and 2) the Holy Spirit - Compare Luke 24:27 and Luke 24:32

Personally, I'd rather see, hear the bodily Christ.
However, 1)  That IS NOT His plan for most people - John 20:29.
It's not like we're believing with blind faith.  A number of things make Him known to us.
2) there is no evidence that the disciples continued to encounter Him after the ascension.  They went on doing what they had to do based on these first encounters.
3) they were expected to continue to witness, follow, serve, learn, etc. based on the evidence they had.

Some questions and applications for us!!

Question #1) - have you ever encountered the Risen Christ? 
(ever experienced His Presence, calling, concern, comfort, etc. - maybe correction)

This is subjective, open to interpretation (so.... do you think/believe you've experienced)
However, few come without some experience or encounter with Him.
John 6:44, 12:32 - "draw"  James 4:8 - KJV - "nigh to you"

Question #2.)  (if yes....) Did you interpret that as a confirmation?  or a call?
Because in His bodily ministry = both!!!
ie:  confirmation - "believe that I am the Christ, messenger, Son of God"
call - "come, FOLLOW ME" - He didn't do all He did just so we could know He was the Christ.
We fail a lot when only see it as confirmation.

Question #3)  - 2 parts - How did you Respond?  - not just "I believe" but "I will".
                                      How are you Responding? -
                                             example:  parable of the sower and the seeds - Luke 6:46

Question #4) - Can you expect further visitations? (presence) answer:  Don't know
Example:  Paul
On one hand, Phil. 3:7, 8, 10
On the other hand, example:  epistles - did not mean "wait for a word", but meant "do what you know to do"
Example - book of James - "Draw nigh" but = WORKS!!
We're to be about doing!!

Question #5) - Do you require further visitations?
On one hand, should be open to His Presence.
However, should be accepting of His Absence.
If God never moves on you again, never speaks to you again, etc., will you continue to serve Him???

Ultimate measure of faith is NOT - will you follow in the light!
But, is - will you follow in darkness, or will you serve just because He is God!!!

Examples:  test of Job, ministry of Jeremiah, disciples years after the Resurrection.

No comments: