The crucifixion of Jesus is the hinge of history, the turning point on which the whole world will be reconciled to or reject God. Jesus has paid our sin debt, and in His own words, “It is finished.”
But that’s not the end of the story. That’s only the beginning.
That’s what the disciples instantly understand when Jesus appears to them as they are huddled in dark rooms, behind locked doors, in hiding, and in mourning.
Twice, Jesus says,”Peace be with you.” (John 20:19; John 20:21) It isn’t just a greeting designed to startle them out of their gloom. It is the glorious promise that God’s peace, the wonderful well being that God spoke of when He declared his creation “good,” has been given to them—and to us.
Having raised Jesus from the dead, the resurrection power of the Holy Spirit passes to the disciples—and to us—by the word of Jesus’ very own breath.
Jesus doesn’t immediately ascend to His heavenly throne having done His “dirty work,” leaving us to fend for ourselves as the bearers of a spoken promise and the messengers of a purely legal pardon.
No. The peculiar grace of God in Jesus, Emmanuel, “God with us,” is so much more than that. He was fully God and fully man, able in human flesh to sympathize in our suffering and temptation.
The glorious grace of God is that His power is in our spirit, where He is always with us. That is why, in Him, we have “peace” because we have His power to accomplish everything He asks us to do in His name. “As the Father has sent me,” Jesus tells us, “even so I am sending you.” (John 20:21)