March 22, 2015 Sunday School Commentary
Receive the Holy Spirit
Bible Text- John 20:19-23
Key Verse- John 20:22
And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost . – John 20:22
Today we are faced with many temptations, things that seek to control our attention and distract us from being disciples. Everyday living causes us to feel a variety of emotions. Situations causes us to need comforting, healing and tangible things that are a part of our survival and success. Last week, we discussed the coming of the Holy Spirit and his works. Because we know there is also a constant spirit in this world that seeks our lives, today we are reminded of the importance of receiving the Holy Spirit.
Christ Appears to the Disciples (John 20:19-20)
In today’s text, Jesus had already been crucified and buried after he had spent several years declaring to be the Messiah, the Son of God. Even though he forewarned the disciples about all the events that would take place, they did not completely comprehend. So when Jesus makes an appearance after having been dead for three days, it is startling to those that had the encounter and even to those that heard about it. But he told them, “Peace be unto you” in order to eradicate their fears. Jesus first appeared to Mary Magdalene at the tomb and later to the majority of the disciples. The person that they all saw before them was indeed Jesus in the physical. His body was not inside the tomb. He was not a ghost. He appeared to hundreds of people after he was resurrected. He had the actual wounds from his death . This was indeed the same Jesus that had recruited and taught the disciples.
Point to Ponder: Do you trust the presence of God in your life even if others do not experience it?
Christ Commissions the Disciples ( John 20:21-23)
Jesus’ resurrection was not only a part of the miraculous, but it was a bit of ‘show and tell’. Jesus’ ministry didn’t stop with his resurrection. There was a purpose for him defeating death. Yes, Scripture had to be fulfilled, but there was also work to be done by the disciples and all that would become disciples. Jesus reiterates to the disciples, “Peace be unto you” because he is preparing them for their assignment. He knows about the trials they will encounter, but despite the difficulties that lie ahead, they are obligated to be witnesses about all they have experienced. They must tell about the goodness of God. They must tell about the one who heals and take away sins. They must tell about the unbelievable things that Jesus has done like raise others from the dead and conquered death himself. Jesus knows that they can’t be witnesses with their flesh alone. Jesus tells them to receive the Holy Ghost. He had already told them that the Holy Ghost would come, but now they have to receive what has been promised.
Point to Ponder: Now that you have received the Holy Spirit, are you allowing him to work through you by carrying out the Great Commission?
Starting today, this week seek opportunities to maximize the Holy Spirit’s presence in your life. When you are faced with adversity, ask him to guide you to a place of peace. Open the door of opportunities to tell someone your story, your experiences with God. Encourage someone else so that you might also be encouraged. Receive all the benefits that come with having the Holy Spirit. If you are unsure that you have the Holy Spirit, ASK God to manifest himself!
Commentary by, Evangelist Shulanda Hastings
Lesson guide, Direction-Urban Ministries
Senior Ministry Leader
Spirit Realm Divine Manifestation
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