In Zinzendorf's footsteps

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the afflictions

The Afflictions: a Harmony of the Passion and Resurrection Accounts in the Gospels


1.   It was now two days before the Festival of Passover and Unleavened Bread. The chief priests and the teachers of the Law were looking for a way to arrest Jesus secretly and put him to death.  ‘We must not do it during the festival’, they said, ‘or the people might riot.’

 

Then Judas Iscariot, one of the twelve disciples, went off to the chief priests in order to betray Jesus to them. They were pleased to hear what he had to say, and promised to give him money. So Judas started looking for a good chance to hand Jesus over to them.

 


2.   On the first day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread, the day the lambs for the Passover meal were killed, Jesus' disciples asked him, ‘Where do you want us to go and get the Passover meal ready for you?’

 

Then Jesus sent two of them with these instructions: ‘Go into the city, and a man carrying a jar of water will meet you. Follow him to the house he enters, and say to the owner of the house: “The Teacher says, Where is the room where my disciples and I will eat the Passover meal?” Then he will show you a large upstairs room, fixed up and furnished, where you will get everything ready for us.’

 

The disciples left, went to the city, and found everything just as Jesus had told them; and they prepared the Passover meal.

 


3. When it was evening, Jesus came with the twelve disciples. It was now the day before the Passover Festival. Jesus knew that the hour 

had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. He had always loved those in the world who were his own, and he loved them to the very end.


4. An argument broke out among the disciples over which one of them should be regarded as the greatest.

But Jesus said to them, ‘The kings of the Gentiles rule over their subjects, and those in authority over them are called “friends of the people.”  But that’s not the way it will be with you. Instead, the greatest among you must become like a person of lower status and the leader like a servant. So which one is greater, the one who is seated at the table or the one who serves at the table? Isn’t it the one who is seated at the table? But I am among you as one who serves. You are the ones who have continued with me in my trials. And I confer royal power on you just as my Father granted royal power to me. Thus you will eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and you will sit on thrones overseeing the twelve tribes of Israel.’

 

 

5.  Jesus and his disciples were at supper. The Devil had already put into the heart of Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot, the thought of betraying Jesus. Jesus knew that the Father had given him complete power; he knew that he had come from God and was going to God, so he rose from the table, took off his outer garment, and tied a towel around his waist. Then he poured some water into a washbasin and began to wash the disciples' feet and dry them with the towel around his waist. 

 


6. He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, ‘Are you going to wash my feet, Lord?’

 

Jesus answered him, ‘You do not understand now what I am doing, but you will understand later’.

 

Peter declared, ‘Never at any time will you wash my feet!’

 

‘If I do not wash your feet,’ Jesus answered, ‘you will no longer be my disciple.’

 


7. Simon Peter answered, ‘Lord, do not wash only my feet, then! Wash my hands and head, too!’

 

Jesus said, ‘Those who have taken a bath are completely clean and do not have to wash themselves, except for their feet. All of you are clean—all except one.’ (Jesus already knew who was going to betray him; that is why he said, ‘All of you, except one, are clean’.)

 

After Jesus had washed their feet, he put his outer garment back on and returned to his place at the table. 


8. ‘Do you understand what I have just done to you?’ he asked. ‘You call me Teacher and Lord, and it is right that you do so, because that is what I am. I, your Lord and Teacher, have just washed your feet. You, then, should wash one another's feet.  I have set an example for you, so that you will do just what I have done for you.  I am telling you the truth: no slaves are greater than their master, and no messengers are greater than the one who sent them. Now that you know this truth, how happy you will be if you put it into practice!’

 


9. While they were eating, Jesus took a piece of bread, gave a prayer of thanks, broke it, and gave it to his disciples. ‘Take it,’ he said, ‘this is my body.’

 

Then he took a cup, gave thanks to God, and handed it to them; and they all drank from it. Jesus said, ‘This is my blood which is poured out for many, my blood which seals God's covenant. I tell you, I will never again drink this wine until the day I drink the new wine in the Kingdom of God.

 


10. ‘I know those I have chosen. But the scripture must come true that says, “The man who shared my food turned against me.”  I tell you this now before it happens, so that when it does happen, you will believe that I Am Who I Am. I am telling you the truth: whoever receives anyone I send receives me also; and whoever receives me receives him who sent me.’

   


11. The disciples looked at one another, completely puzzled about whom he meant. One of the disciples, the one whom Jesus loved, was sitting next to Jesus. Simon Peter motioned to him and said, ‘Ask him whom he is talking about.’

 

So that disciple moved closer to Jesus' side and asked, ‘Who is it, Lord?’

 

Jesus answered, ‘I will dip some bread in the sauce and give it to him; he is the man.’

 

So he took a piece of bread, dipped it, and gave it to Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot.  As soon as Judas took the bread, Satan entered into him. Jesus said to him, ‘Hurry and do what you must!’ None of the others at the table understood why Jesus said this to him. Since Judas was in charge of the money bag, some of the disciples thought that Jesus had told him to go and buy what they needed for the festival, or to give something to the poor. Judas accepted the bread and went out at once. It was night.

 


12. After Judas had left, Jesus said, ‘Now the Son of Man's glory is revealed; now God's glory is revealed through him. And if God's glory is revealed through him, then God will reveal the glory of the Son of Man in himself, and he will do so at once. My children, I shall not be with you very much longer. You will look for me; but I tell you now what I told the Jewish authorities: you cannot go where I am going. And now I give you a new commandment: love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. If you have love for one another, then everyone will know that you are my disciples.’

   


13. ‘Where are you going, Lord?’ Simon Peter asked him.

   
‘You cannot follow me now where I am going’, answered Jesus; ‘but later you will follow me.’

 

‘Lord, why can't I follow you now?’ asked Peter. ‘I am ready to die for you!’

 

Jesus answered, ‘Are you really ready to die for me? I am telling you the truth: before the rooster crows you will say three times that you do not know me.’

 


14. Jesus said to them, ‘When I sent you out without a wallet, bag, or sandals, you didn’t lack anything, did you?’

They said, ‘Nothing.’

Then he said to them, ‘But now, whoever has a wallet must take it, and likewise a bag. And those who don’t own a sword must sell their clothes and buy one. I tell you that this scripture must be fulfilled in relation to me: “And he was counted among criminals. Indeed, what’s written about me is nearing completion.’

They said to him, ‘Lord, look, here are two swords.’

He replied, ‘Enough of that!’


15. Then they sang a hymn and went out to the Mount of Olives.

 

They came to a place called Gethsemane, and Jesus said to his disciples, ‘Sit here while I pray.’ He took Peter, James, and John with him. Distress and anguish came over him, and he said to them, ‘The sorrow in my heart is so great that it almost crushes me. Stay here and keep watch.’

 


16.  He went a little farther on, threw himself on the ground, and prayed that, if possible, he might not have to go through that time of suffering. ‘Father,’ he prayed, ’my Father! All things are possible for you. Take this cup of suffering away from me. Yet not what I want, but what you want.’

 

Then he returned and found the three disciples asleep. He said to Peter, ‘Simon, are you asleep? Weren't you able to stay awake for even one hour?’ And he said to them, ‘Keep watch, and pray that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.’

 


17. He went away once more and prayed, saying the same words.  A heavenly angel appeared to him and strengthened him.  He was in anguish and prayed even more earnestly. His sweat became like drops of blood falling on the ground. Then he came back to the disciples and found them asleep; they could not keep their eyes open. And they did not know what to say to him. When he came back the third time, he said to them, ‘Are you still sleeping and resting? Enough! The hour has come! Look, the Son of Man is now being handed over to the power of sinners. Get up, let us go. Look, here is the man who is betraying me!’

   


18.  Jesus was still speaking when Judas, one of the twelve disciples, arrived. With him was a crowd armed with swords and clubs and sent by the chief priests, the teachers of the Law, and the elders. The traitor had given the crowd a signal: ‘The man I kiss is the one you want. Arrest him and take him away under guard.’


19. Jesus knew everything that was going to happen to him. So he went to meet them and asked, ‘Who are you looking for?’

They answered him, ‘Jesus from Nazareth.’

Jesus told them, ‘I am he.’

Judas, who betrayed him, was standing with the crowd.  When Jesus told them, ‘I am he,’ the crowd backed away and fell to the ground.


20. Jesus asked them again, ‘Who are you looking for?’

They said, ‘Jesus from Nazareth.’

 Jesus replied, ‘I told you that I am he. So if you are looking for me, let these other men go.’  In this way what Jesus had said came true: ‘I lost none of those you gave me.’


21. Judas arrived, he went up to Jesus and said, ‘Teacher!’ and kissed him. ‘Judas,’ said Jesus, ‘would you betray the Son of Man with a kiss?’

 

 So they arrested Jesus and held him tight. Then Jesus spoke up and said to them, ‘Did you have to come with swords and clubs to capture me, as though I were an outlaw? Day after day I was with you teaching in the Temple, and you did not arrest me. But the Scriptures must come true.’

   


22. Simon Peter had a sword. He drew it, attacked the chief priest’s servant, and cut off the servant’s right ear. (The servant’s name was Malchus.)

 Jesus told Peter, ‘Put your sword away. Shouldn’t I drink the cup of suffering that my Father has given me? Stop! No more of this!’ He touched the slave’s ear and healed him.

Then all the disciples left him and ran away.


23. Then the army officer and the Jewish guards arrested Jesus. They tied Jesus up  and took him first to Annas, the father-in-law of Caiaphas. Caiaphas, the chief priest that year, was the person who had advised the Jews that it was better to have one man die for the people.

 A certain young man, dressed only in a linen cloth, was following Jesus. They tried to arrest him, but he ran away naked, leaving the cloth behind.


24. Annas sent Jesus to Caiaphas, the chief priest. Jesus was still tied up.

All the chief priests, the elders, and the teachers of the Law gathered. Peter followed from a distance and went into the courtyard of the High Priest's house. The gatekeeper asked Peter, ‘Aren’t you one of this man’s disciples too?’

Peter answered, ‘No, I’m not!’

The servants and the guards were standing around a fire they had built and were warming themselves because it was cold. Peter was standing there, too, and warming himself with the others.


25. The chief priests and the whole Council tried to find some evidence against Jesus in order to put him to death, but they could not find any. Many witnesses told lies against Jesus, but their stories did not agree. Then some men stood up and told this lie against Jesus: ‘We heard him say, “I will tear down this Temple which human hands have made, and after three days I will build one that is not made by people.”’ Not even they, however, could make their stories agree. The members of the Council said, ‘If you are the Christ, tell us!’


26. He answered, ‘If I tell you, you won’t believe. And if I ask you a question, you won’t answer. But from now on, the Son of Man will be seated on the right side of the power of God.’

They all said, ‘Are you God’s Son, then?’

He replied, ‘You say that I am.’

The High Priest stood up in front of them all and questioned Jesus, ‘Have you no answer to the accusation they bring against you?’  But Jesus kept quiet and would not say a word.


27. The chief priest questioned Jesus about his disciples and his teachings. Jesus answered him, ‘I have spoken publicly for everyone to hear. I have always taught in synagogues or in the temple courtyard, where all the Jews gather. I haven’t said anything in secret.  Why do you question me? Question those who heard what I said to them. They know what I’ve said.’

When Jesus said this, one of the guards standing near Jesus slapped his face and said, ‘Is that how you answer the chief priest?’

Jesus replied ‘If I’ve said anything wrong, tell me what it was. But if I’ve told the truth, why do you hit me?’


28. Simon Peter continued to stand and warm himself by the fire. Some men asked him, ‘Aren’t you, too, one of his disciples?’

Peter denied it by saying, ‘No, I’m not!’

One of the chief priest’s servants, a relative of the man whose ear Peter had cut off, asked him, ‘Didn’t I see you with Jesus in the garden?’

Peter again denied it, and just then a rooster crowed. The Lord turned and looked straight at Peter, and Peter remembered the Lord’s words: ‘Before a rooster crows today, you will deny me three times.’  And Peter went out and cried uncontrollably.


29. Again the High Priest questioned Jesus, ‘Are you the Messiah, the Son of the Blessed God?’

 

‘I am,’ answered Jesus, ‘and you will all see the Son of Man seated at the right side of the Almighty and coming with the clouds of heaven!’

 

The High Priest tore his robes and said, ‘We don't need any more witnesses! You heard his blasphemy. What is your decision?’
         

They all voted against him: he was guilty and should be put to death.

 


30. Some of them began to spit on Jesus, and they blindfolded him and hit him. ‘Guess who hit you!’ they said. And the guards took him and slapped him.

Early in the morning, Jesus was taken from Caiaphas’ house to the governor’s palace.

The Jews wouldn’t go into the palace. They didn’t want to become unclean since they wanted to eat the Passover. So Pilate came out to them and asked, ‘What accusation are you making against this man?’

The Jews answered Pilate, ‘If he weren’t a criminal, we wouldn’t have handed him over to you.’

Pilate told the Jews, ‘Take him, and try him by your law.’


31. The Jews answered him, ‘We’re not allowed to execute anyone.’  In this way what Jesus had predicted about how he would die came true. They said, ‘We have found this man misleading our people, opposing the payment of taxes to Caesar, and claiming that he is the Christ, a king.’

Pilate went back into the palace, called for Jesus, and asked him, ‘Are you the king of the Jews?’

Jesus replied, ‘Did you think of that yourself, or did others tell you about me?’

Pilate answered, ‘Am I a Jew? Your own people and the chief priests handed you over to me. What have you done?’


32. Jesus answered, ‘My kingdom doesn’t belong to this world. If my kingdom belonged to this world, my followers would fight to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. My kingdom doesn’t have its origin on earth.’

Pilate asked him, ‘So you are a king?’

Jesus replied, ‘You’re correct in saying that I’m a king. I have been born and have come into the world for this reason: to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to me.’

 Pilate said to him, ‘What is truth?’


33. While he was serving as judge, his wife sent this message to him, ‘Leave that righteous man alone. I’ve suffered much today in a dream because of him.’ Then Pilate said to the chief priests and the crowds, ‘I find no legal basis for action against this man.’

But they objected strenuously, saying, ‘He agitates the people with his teaching throughout Judea—starting from Galilee all the way here.’


34. Hearing this, Pilate asked if the man was a Galilean.  When he learned that Jesus was from Herod’s district, Pilate sent him to Herod, who was also in Jerusalem at that time.  Herod was very glad to see Jesus, for he had heard about Jesus and had wanted to see him for quite some time. He was hoping to see Jesus perform some sign. Herod questioned Jesus at length, but Jesus didn’t respond to him.  The chief priests and the legal experts were there, fiercely accusing Jesus.  Herod and his soldiers treated Jesus with contempt. Herod mocked him by dressing Jesus in elegant clothes and sent him back to Pilate. Pilate and Herod became friends with each other that day. Before this, they had been enemies.


35. Pilate went out to the Jews again and told them, ‘I don’t find this man guilty of anything. You have a custom that I should free one person for you at Passover. Would you like me to free the king of the Jews for you?’

The Jews shouted again, ‘Don’t free this man! Free Barabbas!’ (Barabbas was a political revolutionary.)

Pilate addressed them again because he wanted to release Jesus.

They kept shouting out, ‘Crucify him! Crucify him!’


36. For the third time, Pilate said to them, ‘Why? What wrong has he done? I’ve found no legal basis for the death penalty in his case. Therefore, I will have him whipped, then let him go.’

But they were adamant, shouting their demand that Jesus be crucified. Their voices won out. Pilate issued his decision to grant their request. He released the one they asked for, who had been thrown into prison because of a riot and murder. He saw that he was getting nowhere and that a riot was starting. So he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd. “I’m innocent of this man’s blood,” he said. ‘The responsibility is yours.’


37. All the people replied, ‘Let his blood be on us and on our children.’ Then he released Barabbas to them. He had Jesus whipped, then handed him over to be crucified.

The governor’s soldiers took Jesus into the governor’s house, and they gathered the whole company of soldiers around him.  They stripped him and put a red military coat on him.  They twisted together a crown of thorns and put it on his head. They put a stick in his right hand. Then they bowed down in front of him and mocked him, saying, ‘Hey! King of the Jews!’  After they spit on him, they took the stick and struck his head again and again.  When they finished mocking him, they stripped him of the military coat and put his own clothes back on him. They led him away to crucify him.


38. As they led Jesus away, they grabbed Simon, a man from Cyrene, who was coming in from the countryside. They put the cross on his back and made him carry it behind Jesus. A large number of people followed him, including women who mourned and wailed for him. Jesus turned and said to them, ‘Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me; weep for yourselves and for your children. For the time will come when you will say, “Blessed are the childless women, the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never nursed!” Then “they will say to the mountains, ‘Fall on us!’ and to the hills, ‘Cover us!’” For if people do these things when the tree is green, what will happen when it is dry?’


39.  When Judas, who betrayed Jesus, saw that Jesus was condemned to die, he felt deep regret. He returned the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders, and said, ‘I did wrong because I betrayed an innocent man.’

But they said, ‘What is that to us? That’s your problem.’ Judas threw the silver pieces into the temple and left. Then he went and hanged himself.

The chief priests picked up the silver pieces and said, ‘According to the Law it’s not right to put this money in the treasury. Since it was used to pay for someone’s life, it’s unclean.’  So they decided to use it to buy the potter’s field where strangers could be buried. That’s why that field is called ‘Field of Blood’ to this very day. This fulfilled the words of Jeremiah the prophet: ‘And I took the thirty pieces of silver, the price for the one whose price had been set by some of the Israelites, and I gave them for the potter’s field, as the Lord commanded me.’


40.  When they came to a place called Golgotha, which means Skull Place,  they gave Jesus wine mixed with vinegar to drink. But after tasting it, he didn’t want to drink it.  After they crucified him, they divided up his clothes among them by drawing lots. They sat there, guarding him.  Jesus said, ‘Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.’


41. Pilate had a notice prepared and fastened to the cross. It read: jesus of nazareth, the king of the jews.  Many of the Jews read this sign, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city, and the sign was written in Aramaic, Latin and Greek.  The chief priests of the Jews protested to Pilate, ‘Do not write “The King of the Jews”, but that this man claimed to be king of the Jews.’

Pilate answered, ‘What I have written, I have written.’

They crucified with him two outlaws, one on his right side and one on his left.


42. Those who were walking by insulted Jesus, shaking their heads and saying, ‘So you were going to destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, were you? Save yourself! If you are God’s Son, come down from the cross.’

In the same way, the chief priests, along with the legal experts and the elders, were making fun of him, saying, He saved others, but he can’t save himself. He’s the king of Israel, so let him come down from the cross now. Then we’ll believe in him.  He trusts in God, so let God deliver him now if he wants to. He said, “I’m God’s Son.”’


43. One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: ‘Aren’t you the Messiah? Save yourself and us!’

But the other criminal rebuked him. ‘Don’t you fear God,’ he said, ‘since you are under the same sentence? We are punished justly, for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong.’

Then he said, ‘Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom’

Jesus answered him, ‘Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.’


44.  Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, ‘Woman, here is your son,’ and to the disciple, ‘Here is your mother.’ From that time on, this disciple took her into his home.


45.  It was now about noon, and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon, for the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two.  Jesus called out with a loud voice, ‘Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.’


46. Jesus said, ‘I am thirsty.’  A jar of wine vinegar was there, so they soaked a sponge in it, put the sponge on a stalk of the hyssop plant, and lifted it to Jesus’ lips. When he had received the drink, Jesus said, ‘It is finished.’ With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.


47.  The centurion, seeing what had happened, praised God and said, ‘Surely this was a righteous man.’ 

When all the people who had gathered to witness this sight saw what took place, they beat their breasts and went away.  But all those who knew him, including the women who had followed him from Galilee, stood at a distance, watching these things.


48. Now there was a man named Joseph, a member of the Council, a good and upright man,  who had not consented to their decision and action. He came from the Judean town of Arimathea, and he himself was waiting for the kingdom of God.  Going to Pilate, he asked for Jesus’ body. Then he took it down, wrapped it in linen cloth and placed it in a tomb cut in the rock, one in which no one had yet been laid. It was Preparation Day, and the Sabbath was about to begin.

The women who had come with Jesus from Galilee followed Joseph and saw the tomb and how his body was laid in it. Then they went home and prepared spices and perfumes. But they rested on the Sabbath in obedience to the commandment.


49. Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance. So she came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, ‘They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put him!’


50. So Peter and the other disciple started for the tomb. Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first.  He bent over and looked in at the strips of linen lying there but did not go in. Then Simon Peter came along behind him and went straight into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, as well as the cloth that had been wrapped round Jesus’ head. The cloth was still lying in its place, separate from the linen. Finally the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw and believed. (They still did not understand from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead.) Then the disciples went back to where they were staying.


51. Now Mary stood outside the tomb crying. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb and saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus’ body had been, one at the head and the other at the foot.

They asked her, ‘Woman, why are you crying?’

‘They have taken my Lord away,’ she said, ‘and I don’t know where they have put him.’ At this, she turned round and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realise that it was Jesus.

He asked her, ‘Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?’

Thinking he was the gardener, she said, ‘Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.’

Jesus said to her, ‘Mary.’

She turned towards him and cried out in Aramaic, ‘Rabboni!’ (which means ‘Teacher’).

 Jesus said, ‘Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, “I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.”’


52. They were trembling with excitement. At first they did not dare to breathe a word to anyone. Then Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: ‘I have seen the Lord!’ It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the others with them who told this to the apostles. But the men did not believe the women, because their words seemed to them like nonsense. 


53. Some of the sentries went into the city and reported to the chief priests everything that had happened. They got together with the elders, and after consultation gave the soldiers a considerable sum of money and told them, “Your story must be that his disciples came after dark, and stole him away while you were asleep. If by any chance this reaches the governor’s ears, we will put it right with him and see that you do not suffer for it.” So they took the money and obeyed their instructions. The story was spread and is current among the Jews to this day.


54. Now that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem.  They were talking with each other about everything that had happened.  As they talked and discussed these things with each other, Jesus himself came up and walked along with them;  but they were kept from recognising him.

 He asked them, ‘What are you discussing together as you walk along?’

They stood still, their faces downcast.  One of them, named Cleopas, asked him, ‘Are you the only one visiting Jerusalem who does not know the things that have happened there in these days?’

‘What things?’ he asked.

‘About Jesus of Nazareth,’ they replied. ‘He was a prophet, powerful in word and deed before God and all the people.  The chief priests and our rulers handed him over to be sentenced to death, and they crucified him;  but we had hoped that he was the one who was going to redeem Israel. And what is more, it is the third day since all this took place. In addition, some of our women amazed us. They went to the tomb early this morning but didn’t find his body. They came and told us that they had seen a vision of angels, who said he was alive.  Then some of our companions went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but they did not see Jesus.’

He said to them, ‘How foolish you are, and how slow to believe all that the prophets have spoken!  Did not the Messiah have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?’ And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.


55. As they approached the village to which they were going, Jesus continued on as if he were going further. But they urged him strongly, ‘Stay with us, for it is nearly evening; the day is almost over.’ So he went in to stay with them.

 When he was at the table with them, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to them.  Then their eyes were opened and they recognised him, and he disappeared from their sight.  They asked each other, ‘Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?’


56. They got up and returned at once to Jerusalem. There they found the Eleven and those with them, assembled together and saying, ‘It is true! The Lord has risen and has appeared to Simon.’  Then the two told what had happened on the way, and how Jesus was recognised by them when he broke the bread.

While they were still talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them. It was the evening of that first day of the week, and the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jewish leaders, Jesus came and stood among them and said, ‘Peace be with you!’ After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord.

They were startled and frightened, thinking they saw a ghost.  He said to them, ‘Why are you troubled, and why do doubts rise in your minds?  Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have.’


57. When he had said this, he showed them his hands and feet.  And while they still did not believe it because of joy and amazement, he asked them, ‘Do you have anything here to eat?’  They gave him a piece of broiled fish,  and he took it and ate it in their presence.

He said to them, ‘This is what I told you while I was still with you: everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.’

Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures.  He told them, ‘This is what is written: the Messiah will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day,  and repentance for the forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things.  I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.’


58. Again Jesus said, ‘Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.’ And with that he breathed on them and said, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit.  If you forgive anyone’s sins, their sins are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.’


59. Now Thomas (also known as Didymus), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, ‘We have seen the Lord!’

But he said to them, ‘Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.’

A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, ‘Peace be with you!’ Then he said to Thomas, ‘Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.’

Thomas said to him, ‘My Lord and my God!’

Then Jesus told him, ‘Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.’


60. Afterwards Jesus appeared again to his disciples, by the Sea of Galilee. It happened this way:  Simon Peter, Thomas (also known as Didymus), Nathanael from Cana in Galilee, the sons of Zebedee, and two other disciples were together.  ‘I’m going out to fish,’ Simon Peter told them, and they said, ‘We’ll go with you.’ So they went out and got into the boat, but that night they caught nothing.

 Early in the morning, Jesus stood on the shore, but the disciples did not realise that it was Jesus.

He called out to them, ‘Friends, haven’t you any fish?’

‘No,’ they answered.

He said, ‘Throw your net on the right side of the boat and you will find some.’ When they did, they were unable to haul the net in because of the large number of fish.


61. Then the disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, ‘It is the Lord!’ As soon as Simon Peter heard him say, ‘It is the Lord,’ he wrapped his outer garment round him (for he had taken it off) and jumped into the water.  The other disciples followed in the boat, towing the net full of fish, for they were not far from shore, about a hundred metres.  When they landed, they saw a fire of burning coals there with fish on it, and some bread.

Jesus said to them, ‘Bring some of the fish you have just caught.’  So Simon Peter climbed back into the boat and dragged the net ashore. It was full of large fish, 153, but even with so many the net was not torn.  Jesus said to them, ‘Come and have breakfast.’ None of the disciples dared ask him, ‘Who are you?’ They knew it was the Lord.  Jesus came, took the bread and gave it to them, and did the same with the fish.  This was now the third time Jesus appeared to his disciples after he was raised from the dead.


62. When they had finished eating, Jesus said to Simon Peter, ‘Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?’

‘Yes, Lord,’ he said, ‘you know that I love you.’

Jesus said, ‘Feed my lambs.’

 Again Jesus said, ‘Simon son of John, do you love me?’

He answered, ‘Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.’

Jesus said, ‘Take care of my sheep.’

The third time he said to him, ‘Simon son of John, do you love me?’

Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, ‘Do you love me?’ He said, ‘Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you.’

Jesus said, ‘Feed my sheep.  Very truly I tell you, when you were younger you dressed yourself and went where you wanted; but when you are old you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go.’ Jesus said this to indicate the kind of death by which Peter would glorify God. Then he said to him, ‘Follow me!’


63. Peter turned and saw that the disciple whom Jesus loved was following them. (This was the one who had leaned back against Jesus at the supper and had said, ‘Lord, who is going to betray you?’)  When Peter saw him, he asked, ‘Lord, what about him?’

Jesus answered, ‘If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you? You must follow me.’  Because of this, the rumour spread among the believers that this disciple would not die. But Jesus did not say that he would not die; he only said, ‘If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you?’


64. The eleven went to the hill-side in Galilee where Jesus had arranged to meet them, and when they had seen him they worshipped him, though some of them were doubtful.

But Jesus came and spoke these words to them, ‘All power in Heaven and on earth has been given to me. You, then, are to go and make disciples of all the nations and baptise them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Teach them to observe all that I have commanded you and, remember, I am with you always, even to the end of the world.’


65. Jesus led them out to the vicinity of Bethany. He lifted up his hands and blessed them.  While he was blessing them, he left them and was taken up into heaven.