They put him to death by hanging him on a tree, 40but God raised him on the third day and made him to appear, 41not to all the people but to us who had been chosen by God as witnesses, who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead. 42And he commanded us to preach to the people and to testify that he is the one appointed by God to be judge of the living and the dead. 43To him all the prophets bear witness that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.” Acts 10:39-43
I wish I could have sat in on the dinners Jesus had with the disciples after His resurrection from the dead. We get glimpses of these dinners in John 20 and 21, Luke 24, Acts 1:3-8, and the passage above. Peter says, our resurrected Lord Jesus spent time over meals with a chosen few that they would be His witnesses, prepared for His mission. Peter sounds so matter-of-fact. But I can imagine the joy and awe they shared in those forty days as the ate and drank with him. I suppose they hung on his every word.
Drawn to the table, they shared food and drink, and heard Jesus’ heart as He spoke over their meal. Jesus wants people to know the what God is up to through His life, His death, and His resurrection. He has been making it know through all the prophets and now through His disciples and His church.
All people will be judged by Jesus.
All who believe in Jesus will receive forgiveness of sins through His name.
Jesus also spoke of another dinner. It’s post-resurrection and post-judgement. You won’t want to miss it!
26 Now as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and after blessing it broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, “Take, eat; this is my body.” 27And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he gave it to them, saying, “Drink of it, all of you, 28for this is my blood of thecovenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. 29I tell you I will not drink again of this fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.” Matthew 26:26-29
Scripture: 2 Peter 5:3-10
Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.
4For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to chains of gloomy darkness to be kept until the judgment; 5if he did not spare the ancient world, but preserved Noah, a herald of righteousness, with seven others, when he brought a flood upon the world of the ungodly; 6if by turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes he condemned them to extinction, making them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly; 7and if he rescued righteous Lot, greatly distressed by the sensual conduct of the wicked 8(for as that righteous man lived among them day after day, he was tormenting his righteous soul over their lawless deeds that he saw and heard); 9then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment until the day of judgment, 10and especially those who indulge in the lust of defiling passion and despise authority. Bold and willful, they do not tremble as they blaspheme the glorious ones…
Peter affirms that God is judging those who distort the truth, abuse His name, and exploit people.
God is not asleep. When it seems like wickedness is prevailing Peter reminds these people under pressure that God’s judgment has appeared, and will come again. This is particularly important because of the hubris that accompanies willful rebellion against God and His Gospel. A view of God’s judgment also is important for helping us metabolize the lack of mindfulness toward God and the lack of empathy toward people that may characterize people doing evil things. Jesus said, “Forgive them for they do not know what they are doing.” But what do we do, when they do know what they are doing?
Heavenly Father, To trust that you will ultimately put all things right means that I believe you are the solution to evil and to the brokenness generated by our independence from you. To trust that you are putting things right through Jesus Christ means that I abandon revenge and self-righteousness. To trust that you are putting things right means that I believe we can find some measure of justice in this world for others who suffer from the evil deeds and decisions humans are capable of. But even then nothing will be so satisfying as knowing you. AMEN.
It really wasn’t about Israel.
When asked about sides, the commander of the Lord’s army, said, “No… I’m here now.”
It was about God judging.
We can build up our walls against God, now.
We can try to create “safe rooms” in our heart against the knowledge of God, now.
Now it seems like God and “his people” are circling around you.
The walls will come down by the Lord’s command as if they were startled by the blast of a trumpet.
And God will move in.
The difference for now is that Jesus went outside the city walls in humiliation and took on all the judgement of God for you at the Cross.
The difference for later is that the commander of the Lord’s army will return with an all-consuming glory.
Its better to be with Jesus now by His grace.
May the walls come down.
May the Lord come in.