Q.

Why did Jesus’ disciples go back to Galilee after the Resurrection, when they would be going back to Jerusalem for Pentecost? How did they get up there so quickly?

A.
Matthew 28:7, 10, and 16 answer the question of why the disciples returned to Galilee, and many people have overlooked these verses: The angel at the empty tomb had told them, “ ‘He [Jesus] is going before you into Galilee; there you will see Him. Behold, I have told you.’ ” Further, Jesus told the women at the empty tomb, “ ‘Do not be afraid. Go and tell My brethren to go to Galilee, and there they will see Me.’ ” Verse 16 records the disciples’ response: “Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, to the mountain which Jesus had appointed for them.”

It isn’t difficult to understand why it would be easy for the disciples to obey. Jerusalem hadn’t been kind to them. There they had just seen their Savior tortured and crucified, their colleague Judas betray Him, and one of their own deny Him. In addition, at that moment they thought they were facing an uncertain future. Home and a change of scene would have looked inviting to them. Peter’s statement in John 21:3, “I am going fishing,” and the response of the rest, “We are going with you also,” are laden with meaning. When the uncertainties of life come, the old and familiar beckon strongly. The setting and encounter with Christ was important, particularly to Peter and his “recommissioning” for God’s purposes for him.

As to how the disciples got there quickly, they would have had sufficient days for the journey. If you look at a map with a scale of miles, you can see that this journey and time element were realistic, since people were used to walking great distances in those days.

Do you have feedback or a Bible question to submit? Send to nolson@garbc.org or mail to Norman A. Olson in care of the Baptist Bulletin, 1300 N. Meacham Rd., Schaumburg, IL 60173-4806.

Reprinted from the Baptist Bulletin (April 2004).
© 2004 Regular Baptist Press. All rights reserved.
Used by permission.