36 The disciples were still talking about this when Jesus himself suddenly stood among them. He said, “May you have peace!” 37 They were surprised and terrified. They thought they were seeing a ghost. 38 Jesus said to them, “Why are you troubled? Why do you have doubts in your minds? 39 Look at my hands and my feet. It’s really me! Touch me and see. A ghost does not have a body or bones. But you can see that I do.” 40 After he said that, he showed them his hands and feet. 41 But they still did not believe it. They were amazed and filled with joy. So Jesus asked them, “Do you have anything here to eat?” 42 They gave him a piece of cooked fish. 43 He took it and ate it in front of them.
Two of Jesus’ followers were explaining to the disciples how Jesus had been with them the day before on the road to Emmaus. All of a sudden Jesus turns up amongst them! His first words to them are, “Peace be with you.”
Despite being with Jesus the day before the followers do not recognize Jesus and nor do the disciples. They think Jesus is a ghost and are very frightened – freaking out! Clearly they are struggling to believe Jesus has risen from the dead and that He is truly alive.
Jesus asks them to look at Him and even urges them to touch him. He wants them to know He is alive and goes on to eat a piece of fish to prove it to them.
The clearest message here is that we don’t always recognize that Jesus is right there with us. We may have had past experiences or revelations, even recent ones, that God was walking with us just like the followers in the story. Jesus promises to be with us and not forsake us.
When Jesus comes into our world He brings peace not fear. That was His intention when He appeared to his followers and it’s the same with us. Jesus is not a ghost or some distant “spirro” concept. He’s a real person yet God at the same time. He can be seen, heard and felt. From this story we know Jesus wants us to experience Him for ourselves.
Lord, thank you for bringing peace into my life. Help me to clearly recognise you in my walk with you. Amen
Written by Ainslie Woods