As most of the world knows, the Crucifixion was only the beginning of the story. The immediate aftermath of Christ's death had a massive impact on his disciples, his mother Mary, and key political and religious leaders of the era, completely altering the entire world in an instant. Watch as the disciples struggle to survive and share their beliefs, guiding us from the sorrow of Christ's ultimate sacrifice to the awe-inspiring wonder of the Resurrection and beyond.
The New Testament is home to thousands of inspirational scriptures from the life and teachings of Jesus Christ and his disciples. Since you may not find the time to read it cover to cover today, we've compiled a list of 11 inspirational verses to help get you through the week.
1. "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind" (2 Timothy 1:7).
Plaster this scripture on a mirror, your phone background or on your ceiling to read as your personal montage first thing in the morning. The spirit of fear is not from God — he has given you power, a strong mind and the ability to love.
2. "He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it" (Matt. 10:39).__
A good reminder that when you're feeling bad about yourself — or your circumstances — get out and serve someone else. In the process you will find your purpose and more happiness.
3. "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest" (Matt. 11:28).
Oftentimes we forget that we don't have to go through this life alone. We forget that Jesus performed the Atonement and felt everything we have felt. Here he invites everyone to come unload their stresses, pains, fears and weakness and he will give us relief.
4. "And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men. And they straightway left their nets, and followed him" (Matt. 4:19-20).
Simon, Peter and Andrew were fishing in the sea of Galilee when Jesus approached them. They had no idea who he was or what he stood for, but they felt something. And they straightway left their nets. They didn't ask questions, they didn't look back or converse with each other doubtingly. They dropped their nets and followed the Savior with no hesitation.
5. "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven" (Matt. 5:16).
The Sermon on the Mount is one of the most powerful sermons of all time. Jesus encourages us to do good, but more importantly to be good — so much so that people will see your light, give credit to God and want to be more Christlike.
6. "So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her" (John 8:7).
A classic parable taught by the Savior reminding Christians everywhere that unless we are without sin (which we aren't), then we should not — and cannot — judge another.
7. "But I say unto you which hear, Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you" (Luke 6:27).
Maybe it's a neighbor, an estranged sister, a defiant child or conniving in-law. Whomever it is, love them. Pray for them. Serve them and forgive them. It seems impossible, but it's not. With help from the one who created us all, forgiveness and love are possible. Letting go of those harbored feelings will surely heal your soul.
8. "For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also" (Luke 12:34)
In a world where more is better, it's difficult to keep an eternal perspective. Is your focus on Instagram likes more than spiritual likes? Do you care more about what your coworkers think of you than what your spouse does? Is that dream car consuming your every thought? If so, it's time for some self-evaluating.
9. "Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed" (St John 20:29).
How often do we require evidence before exercising faith? Thomas, an apostle of the Savior, had to see the resurrected Lord with his own eyes before he could believe he really returned as he said he would. Jesus took the opportunity to teach him — and all of us — that while believing is good, it's better to believe without seeing.
10. "If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him" (James 1:5).
It's safe to say we all lack wisdom, whether it be educational, spiritual or otherwise. Maybe you lack wisdom in raising children as a first-time mom. Or maybe you lack wisdom in how to navigate through difficult college courses. Whatever the struggle is, God gives wisdom, support and peace — generously — to those who ask.
For more uplifting — and true — media, tune into NBC's 12-part series "A.D. The Bible Continues,"which picks up where mash hit miniseries "The Bible" left off.
#ADTheSeries premieres Easter Sunday, April 5 at 9/8c on NBC.