Christ is risen! He is risen indeed, Alleluia! So . . . “Why were the disciples scared? Jesus was with them again!” That’s what we think when we hear they were scared when they first saw the Risen Christ. We love Jesus. We know He loves us. Why be afraid?
Put yourself in their shoes. If you’ve been to a funeral home, you’ve seen death. You know it doesn’t move. They saw Jesus dead. They knew He was dead. You don’t just come back from that like it never happened. If that happened you would be shaken up too!
But did they have other reasons to be afraid? What did they do when Jesus was arrested? They ran away! Peter denied Him. John stayed with Him but didn’t defend Him. He may have been the only one there with Him when He died. The rest? They cared more about themselves than about Jesus – they were afraid the Jews would come for them too. Worst of all? They hadn’t believed Him when He told them 3 times He would rise from the dead on the third day.
They shoulda been in big trouble! But Jesus wasn’t angry with them! Instead he led them to put together what they had learned from all the Old Testament (Moses, Prophets, Psalms) – to see that it all talks about what He had just done those past few days.
What’s the point? There’s gotta be a reason for all this, right? Why did Jesus die and rise again? Why’d He go through all that? Why didn’t He just use His divinity to live a real comfortable life? Because He’s not out for Himself. He cares about you.
What does He want? He wanted the Apostles to preach repentance and forgiveness of sins throughout the world starting on Pentecost. Why? Because they are His witnesses. They saw Him risen from the dead. You haven’t seen it. So they went out to tell people what I tell you: Jesus died and rose – for you!
So repent. What’s that mean? Be sorry for your sins, for every time you’ve taken something that isn’t yours, every time you didn’t listen to mom or dad, every time you got mad, every time you got into a fight at school. Then hear Jesus say to you: “I forgive you! You are pardoned! God punished Me, so He won’t punish you. I died and rose, and you shall live even though you die! Believe it! Trust Me!” Christ is risen! He is risen indeed, Alleluia!