Day 2: I've got your back! (Luke 24:36–53)
Today’s Passage: Luke 24;36-53
Has anyone ever said that to you? If they did, was it in a serious context, when you really needed someone to “have it”?
The idea that there is someone you know will be with you, help you, cover you—it’s a cool idea that communicates a deep mutual commitment of one person to the other.
Jesus tells the disciples to go and wait, for he “is sending the promise of my Father” (cf. Lk. 24:49).
When you “go and wait” it implies a degree of trust. They don’t know Jesus is about to ascend before their eyes. I expect, after it happened, they were really disoriented.
Yet he gives them a very important command. It’s as if he says, “I got your backs, now go and wait for what you’ve been waiting the last 2,000 years for, trust me.”
This Promise of the Father phrase is important. And they would have to wait for it, without him.
This Promise of the Father is not some new idea. I need to constantly remind myself that God is not “making it up as he goes”, nor is “Jesus Plan B” to a failed experiment in the Garden of Eden. All of the Bible, indeed all of our lives, were established by God before he laid the foundations of the world (Eph. 1:4).
Let’s be clear. Jesus is asking the disciples to go and wait for something God promised ages ago. He was asking the disciples to believe in this specific promise that was made 2,000 years before they lived…for us it is a mere 4,000 years. Let’s get to just what this promise is about.
For years the Rabbi’s had taught about the Promise of the Father. It is an amazing promise where God reveals that we, humans, cannot on our own live for God. Our hearts are like hard stone. We need new hearts, hearts God can write upon. There is a trail through Scripture, almost like bread crumbs, that and I unpack here. That trail passes through Calvary and is fulfilled in the Acts of the Apostles.
Therefore, as we are about to launch on a journey, entering into the story of people who receive this Promise, let’s make sure we understand it.
When we do, we will understand why, and how, they lived radically for Jesus.
This understanding is not to be just a matter of intellectual knowledge. I want to understand so I too, may live radically for Jesus. That will take grounding myself in a deep truth—a truth God has been working since the foundation of the world.
Now before you think you can never get to this point, let’s notice something. They are troubled and full of doubt (v.38). They were. And yes, while Jesus was physically in their presence, some disbelieved.
Often, we are full of doubt and trouble. We notice the world is full of trouble. There is seemingly no end of wars, rumors of wars, hardship, and toil. The same was true for the disciples.
Yet something is happening in them, that will move them from doubt to confidence.
In the coming days, we will spend more time digging into what was happening to them, but for now, are you able to see yourself as part of God’s plan from before he laid the foundations of the world?