Third Day Faithfulness, A Resurrection Sunday Message
By Nathan Leal
The resurrection of Jesus sealed the hope of our salvation. He rose on the third day. This message offers a glimpse of the beauty of the third day. I pray that it will bless you.
Does it sometimes seem that you are all alone, and tired when you want to seek God? Does it seem that at times, He’s not there? This message is to encourage His people, He sees your endurance my friend. And the reward is coming.
The gospel account of the feeding of the four thousand contains a beautiful message of what God wants from all of us. It has to do with faithfulness. Jesus makes note of the faithful ones. For those who may struggle, or wonder if God is there, the answer is yes. He sees the endurance of the hungry, and those who are pressing on.
The passage of Scripture for this message is found in Matthew.
“Now Jesus called His disciples to Himself, and He said, ‘I have compassion on the multitude, because they have now continued with Me three days and have nothing to eat. And I do not want to send them away hungry, lest they faint on the way.’”
As we examine the verse above, on the surface, it reveals that Jesus appreciated the tenacity of the multitude who stayed with Him for three days in the wilderness. This was the setting of the feeding of the four thousand. But in addition to the surface account, this passage of Scripture contains hidden truths that are beautiful.
The Beauty of His Word
So let’s examine the treasure.
The third word of verse 32 is the word – called.
Now Jesus called His disciples to Himself.
He called His disciples. But who are His disciples? Yes, it was the twelve. But His disciples are also the faithful ones who have answered the call for the past two thousand years.
…The faithful ones are those who struggled in their time, lived for a promise, and died with a hope.
…The faithful ones are those who answered the call when they heard His voice.
…The faithful ones are those who said, “no,” to the world, but, “yes,” to Him.
…The faithful ones are those who became His disciples, but then fell asleep and joined the other witnesses.
“…He called His disciples to Himself….”
And someday my friend, He will make the final call. It will be a call when His voice, shakes the heavens like a thunder.
It will take place when, “…the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout.” When the Lord shouts on the day of resurrection, He’s going to call all of us WITH A SHOUT! It will be a shout to all of us that says, “Rise again! Come forth!”
In the third word of the verse, it says, “Now Jesus called His disciples to Himself.”
The Scriptures are full of shadows and treasure. This passage has acres of diamonds. In the next sentence, Jesus said, He had compassion on the multitude. Why?
…“because they have now continued with Me three days.”
This statement, “they have now continued with Me three days…” speaks volumes.
Let’s examine the verse, piece by piece;
1. Jesus had compassion…
2. – on the multitude…
3. – they continued…
4. – three days…
The Compassion of Christ
The first part of the verse mentions the compassion of Jesus when He saw the multitude; Think about that. When Jesus saw the assembly of people who were there to see Him, it resulted in compassion from Him.
This means when He sees a multitude of followers gathered together, His response is compassion and loving-kindness, back then as well as today. It also reveals that when Jesus is moved with compassion, His desire is to give us His heavenly bread.
As Matthew 18:20 says – “Where two or three are gathered in My name, I am in the midst of them.”
Folks, when we gather for the express purpose of worship unto God, to sing songs of praise unto Him, to pray, to break bread, and open His Word, it will result in His compassion. The assembly of the saints will get His attention.
The passage says – “…He had compassion on the multitude.”
He saw the multitude. And wanted to give them bread; Life bread, healing bread, restoring bread.
The bread is Him. Therefore, He wants to give of Himself to us. But what sparked this? It was the multitude. And here is a question, are you a part of the multitude?
…Of this kind of multitude?
…Of the kind that gathers with others to listen to Jesus?
…To be with Jesus?
…To lift up Jesus?
…To worship Jesus?
…To strive for Him?
No matter how difficult it is?
Do you love to assemble with others who are hungry for Him? Would you find joy in that multitude?
Today, there are multitudes in the world. But how many have a desire for Him? How many of the world’s multitudes want to seek after Jesus?
Most likely, not many.
Most likely, they would rather gather for themselves,
…to party and to celebrate the things of now.
The multitudes of earth would rather meet with one another to find pleasure,
…and tickle the flesh.
But on this day, in this passage of Scripture, the people gathered for a different reason. They gathered because they wanted to be with Him and listen to what He had to say.
They were a multitude that got His attention. Just like another multitude…
We can find them in a passage of Revelation 7:9, where it says,
“After these things, I looked, and behold a great multitude, which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, with palm branches in their hands.”
This multitude is the great multitude in Heaven; This is the desire of Jesus, to see the people make it into the multitude of Heaven.
Then He said, “I have compassion on the multitude…”
Why did He say this?
…Because they were faithful.
“and He said, ‘I have compassion on the multitude, Because they have now continued with Me three days.”
This statement has several components. “They have now continued.”
Who are “they?”
It was the multitude. Was it just any multitude? No. They are the multitude of people who endured with Him.
Jesus said, “They have now continued with Me…”
Who were they continuing with?
Was it Buddha?…No.
…A New Age guru?
…A Hindu god?
…A pagan god?
…Was it the world?
…The ways of Babylon and Egypt?
No. No…a thousand times NO!
Jesus said, “They have now continued with Me.” This is Jesus talking. And the multitude who stayed with Him are the ones that received His compassion.
So make note. How long did they stay with Him? Was it temporary?
The passage says…“They continued with Him for three days.”
Third Day Faithfulness
This statement is a shadow of how we, His followers must navigate. Our journey is not temporary. It is not supposed to be.
The people in that passage CONTINUED with Him; meaning they endured to the end.
…to the third day.
Now, folks, PLEASE make note of this. The third day is significant.
On the third day, Jesus rose again. The third day represents new life and it represents salvation for you and for me. It represents salvation for us, and for the church. The third day is the final part of the journey where we will rise again with Him to an incorruptible body. On the third day that He rose again and became perfect.
Think about that folks – The third day.
There is so much here, ladies and gentlemen. This passage is incredible, because the term – the third day – has so much profound significance.
… the third day was when Jesus rose again. It made salvation possible for us. Also when He rose, He became the first fruit of the resurrection, which means that His followers will someday be resurrected.
…And in order for us to get to the third day – now, folks, watch this…
…to get to the third day where we rise again, we have to first make it through day one and day two.
Day One – The Cross
On day one, what happened to Jesus?
…He experienced the cross on day one.
…He experienced forsaking the ways of the world on Day one.
He experienced it for the joy set before Him. And He went and He finished what was before Him on the path.
And then He died. That was Day One.
Day Two – The Tomb
Then it was Day Two…
…when He was in the grave.
On day two He was dead to the world. He was dead to temptation. He was dead to insults. He was dead to betrayal. He was dead to all the mess.