The "commercial" we spoke of Friday in John 20:30-31 sounds like an ending to his gospel account of Jesus' life, death and resurrection. In fact, some commentators believe the next chapter with the story of Peter and the large catch of fish was added to the gospel by an editor, meaning that the gospel ended with 20:30-31. We'll look at chapter 21 later this week.
Today I want to consider again the statements that indicate the disciples do not always recognize Jesus in the post-resurrection appearances. I've often wondered why it is that Jesus doesn't look the same from one appearance to another. Why not? What is the point? It could be that not being able to recognize Jesus, to not "see" him, is an analogy for not having eyes of faith. Without the eyes of faith, one cannot "see" Jesus, one cannot recognize him as Lord. True enough. Then those who have not literally seen Jesus can be witnesses just as the original disciples are witnesses. As Jesus says in John 20:29, "Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed."
But what if not recognizing him is literally true? What if Jesus looked different each time they saw him? Why would that be? The only answer that occurs to me is that it kept the disciples looking for Jesus in everyone they saw. If you didn't know what Jesus was going to look like the next time you saw him, you'd have to look for him in every face, in every action, in every person around you.
For reflection: How am I at recognizing Jesus in others?
Let us pray. Lord Jesus, Son of the Father, Victor of Calvary, Eternal One, open my eyes that I might see you, that I might see you in others, that I might see what you want me to see.
(As always, your comments are welcome.)
I started this website and blog on May 1, 2012. I am a Catholic who has been in ministry for many years. I first developed what I would call a close relationship with Jesus in the early 1970s. Ever since then I have been praying with people for healing and other needs. It is because I have seen so many of these prayers answered that I am so bold as to offer to pray for you individually through this website and phone line.