“Repentance for the forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things”. (Luke 24:47-48)
The disciples had been witnesses of Jesus’ teachings and miracles, and also of his death and resurrection. They were therefore the best candidates to proclaim the Gospel to others! After all, they were not only eye-witnesses of all that had
happened, but had also personally experienced the transforming power of forgiveness and renewal as offered by Jesus Christ.
That is the core of the Gospel as Jesus phrases it here: “repentance for the forgiveness of sins”. If we repent, Jesus wants to cast all our sins into the depths of the sea, so that they no longer stand between God and us. And He can do so, since He Himself bore the judgment in our place. Through His atoning death, people can be reconciled to God.
This good news should be proclaimed in all the world. Beginning from Jerusalem, the disciples should spread the Gospel to all nations. But they need not do that in their own power. For Jesus continues: “And behold, I am sending the promise of my Father upon you. But stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high” (Luke 24:49). Over the coming days, we will see how the disciples were indeed empowered for their task.
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