Identifying the mission

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That Sunday evening the disciples were meeting behind locked doors because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. Suddenly, Jesus was standing there among them! “Peace be with you,” he said.  As he spoke, he showed them the wounds in his hands and his side. They were filled with joy when they saw the Lord!  Again he said, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you.”  Then he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit.  If you forgive anyone’s sins, they are forgiven. If you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”            John 20:19-23

When the risen Jesus said this to His apostles, He was identifying the mission upon which He sent them with the way of the cross.  And that way was – in one aspect – the way of total protest against the established powers.

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