Please continue to join us with our Easter Week Celebration readings, as well as this word from Gary Wright: John Rinehart asks this question, “How did Jesus and his disciples fund three years of preaching tours from town to town and village to village after they had all left their jobs? Surely every lunch wasn’t a miracle meal of fishes and loaves. This is great overlooked question. Luke wrote, “He continued according to plan, traveled to town after town, village after village, preaching God’s kingdom, spreading the Message. The Twelve were with him. There were also some women in their company who had been healed of various evil afflictions and illnesses: Mary, the one called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone out; Joanna, wife of Chuza, Herod’s manager; and Susanna—along with many others who used their considerable means to provide for the company.” Luke 8:1-3 MSG. So, Mary Magdalene, Joanna and Susanna “used their considerable means to provide for the company,” or the ministry of Jesus. Rinehart calls them, “Gospel Patrons: people who resource and come alongside others to help them proclaim the gospel.”
Who did the angels first appear to and assign to carry the Good News that first Easter morn? It was the same women! “They left the tomb and broke the news of all this to the Eleven and the rest. Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the other women with them kept telling these things to the apostles, but the apostles didn’t believe a word of it, thought they were making it all up.“ (Luke 24:9-11 MSG). However, Matthew states that even before they reached the Eleven, before they could tell anyone, “The women, deep in wonder and full of joy, lost no time in leaving the tomb. They ran to tell the disciples. Then Jesus met them, stopping them in their tracks. “Good morning!” he said. They fell to their knees, embraced his feet, and worshiped him. Jesus said, “You’re holding on to me for dear life! Don’t be frightened like that. Go tell my brothers that they are to go to Galilee, and that I’ll meet them there.” (Matthew 28:8-10 MSG) God entrusted His message, and His presence to these "Gospel Patrons."
Many of you are Gospel Patrons to World Renewal, resourcing and coming alongside us to proclaim the Gospel. Together we are better. He is Risen!