Afterward he appeared to the eleven themselves as they were reclining at table, and he rebuked them for their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they had not believed those who saw him after he had risen. And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.”
I am trying to imagine what it must have been like for the disciples when Jesus appeared to them. Reports of his resurrection had been told to them but they did not have it in themselves to believe the good news. These men saw their friend and teacher die a brutal death. They were traumatized and in the early stages of the grieving process. When Christ appears to them they are both confused and relieved.. shocked and joyous.
To these who did not believe.. to these with hard hearts.. Jesus turns their unbelief and their heart inside out. Instead of commiserating with them the Lord lays down the gospel gauntlet. In just a few words he casts the vision and the mission that would fire up the church for centuries to come. He assures them that their message will have the power to save and changes lives. These hardhearted unbelievers would soon turn the world upside down.
Help me to proclaim the good news today Lord in what I say and what I do.