19 On the evening of that first day of the week, when 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!” 20 After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord.
21 Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.” 22 And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive anyone’s sins, their sins are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.” (Jn 20:19–23).
In this passage we find that Jesus when he appears to his disciples says “Peace be with you”, when we read these words we tend to think in terms of an absence of conflict and feeling peaceful, but Jesus meant much more by these words. Peace in the bible is seen as a positive state of blessing, peace is a state of bounty,having the provision one needs. Jesus is granting his disciples all the blessing they will need to continue his mission. He has died for a lost world and is now the resurrected king of kings, he has conquered all the powers of evil, death and hell but people need to come to know the resurrected Lord for themselves. and this is the essence of the commission that Jesus gives his disciples. Jesus knows that His disciples can not carry out this mission without the impartation of the Holy Spirit, the responsibility to proclaim the gospel is not something they can do in their own power.
Some people say that they cannot understand this impartation of the Holy spirit as they feel it conflicts with Luke’s account, but this is not the case, the disciples needed the Spirit to prepare them for ministry. We can not account for Luke’s account if we do not acknowledge the power of the Spirit working in the disciples prior to Pentecost, how else can we account for the spirit of prayer that led to Pentecost. also the disciples would need to be assured of the presence of the Spirit if they were to be able to proclaim the gospel. Jesus had promised the Holy Spirit in John’s gospel, he said that the Holy Spirit would convict of sin, righteousness and judgement, surely this is the essence of the commission given here. The disciples were to proclaim that in Christ alone was to be found salvation. It is through receiving the finished work of Christ that people become Christians, to be willing to receive Christ shows an acknowledgement of our own sinfulness and our need of a Saviour. Here we find the impartation of peace and the gift of the Holy Spirit are intrinsically linked together, it is through the presence of the risen Lord that mission can be accomplished in the power of the Holy Spirit. The disciples need to know that the power of the Spirit is within them so that they can carry out this awesome commission, without this they would feel powerless and helpless. so Jesus imparts his Holy Spirit to his disciple so that they may know the presence of his blessing and in this they will realise that what to the flesh seems impossible is in fact possible through the spirit of the Risen and Exalted Lord.