Have you ever seen such a miserable bunch?
It is Resurrection Morning, and we read of a band of men still living on the wrong side of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Read any of the accounts of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ and you will find this to be so very true - and it is understandable. That is one of the tremendous truths in this temporary situation. It is understandable and Almighty God understood what they were going through.
That is where many are living today, in this broken, sad, warring, troubled world.
People are groping in the dark, just as these men were on this occasion.
These disciples felt hopelessly inadequate in face of the grim facts which they thought confronted them.
The supreme need of our world is to discover Jesus Christ risen, living and alive!
Throughout the daylight hours the disciples feel bewildered and defeated, and no psychological pep-talk would perk up these sad souls in a room with the doors firmly locked.
Sense the atmosphere. Reconstruct the scene. Look at their faces. Listen to their conversations.
They had lived for three years with this dynamic leader. Christ's coming meant excitement and adventure. Within 24 hours Jesus was arrested and crucified.
There were fantastic rumours going around from the womenfolk, and even from John and Peter, but you cannot live on rumours.
What has Peter been thinking since he fled from the Cross? “I remember the day He called me. John, will we ever get over how we all deserted Him in His blackest hour. "
Simon the Zealot pipes up, “Yes I saw it all happen. I thought everyone in Galilee and Jerusalem was going to be healed, fed and satisfied, and then we would get rid of these Romans, but it is they who have got rid of Him. "
Every disciple was a deserter. None of us has been in such a situation.
If you have ever been bereaved you will know that every phrase is real, because we have all uttered similar words in some form.
Sandy Shaw is Pastor of Nairn Christian Fellowship, Chaplain at Inverness Prison, and Nairn Academy, and serves on The Children's Panel in Scotland, and has travelled extensively over these past years teaching, speaking, in America, Canada, South Africa, Australia, making 12 visits to Israel conducting Tours and Pilgrimages, and most recently in Uganda and Kenya, ministering at Pastors and Leaders Seminars, in the poor areas surrounding Kampala, Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu.
He broadcasts regularly on WSHO radio out of New Orleans, and writes a weekly commentary at http://www.studylight.org entitled “Word from Scotland" on various biblical themes, as well as a weekly newspaper column.
His M. A. and B. D.degrees are from The University of Edinburgh, and he continues to run and exercise regularly to maintain a level of physical fitness.