Christianity is the only religion that has an ‘ending’ to the story”. We are set apart from all other religions because of the Resurrection. I never debate or argue about ‘religion’ with anyone, but I love talking to teenagers about “what they believe” and pretending to be interested, only to say…”Wow, how do you know that is true?” “That is fascinating, can you find me some literature proving that” (I did it this week on Reincarnation)
The last words in the book of Matthew are called “The Great Commission”
The Great Commission
16 Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
I love that the women were heading to the tomb to anoint Jesus’ body and on the way had not thought ahead. Who is going to move the stone? It was a 2 ton stone. Did they need to anoint His body? No, it was already done. Six days before His death, Mary (Lazarus sister) had already prepared the body for His burial when they had dinner at Simon’s house (John 12).
MANY people were present at the Crucifixion because they were in town for the Passover. Most had returned home. The news of His death was spreading but the news of His resurrection was seen by few. Jesus gives His apostles the authority and power to prove Jesus was who He claimed to be. They were to preach the Truth but to prove it (we all need a little proof) they would be given the power of the Holy Spirit to perform miracles SO THAT people would believe in Jesus. The next Festival is 50 days away. Many will return to Jerusalem to commemorate the Feast of Weeks (the first fruits for the barley harvest). This old Testament Feast will be fulfilled, just as the Passover was fulfilled with the Crucifixion, and the Feast of Unleavened Bread was fulfilled with the Resurrection. In 50 days, the Feast of Weeks will be fulfilled with the giving of the Holy Spirit for all believers, called Pentecost (Pente=50)
15 He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. 16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. 17 And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; 18 they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well.”