Back to all posts

Jesus over-restores all (especially the hard) the things

identity lifelift video Sep 30, 2022

I want you to notice something— a piece of the Gospel story you may have missed. Once you see it, you’ll never miss it again, though. I promise…

Jesus looked different before and after the Resurrection. 

Even His closest friends didn’t recognize Him after facing the Cross. 




Mary Magdalene, someone whom Jesus pulled from the depths of despair, didn’t recognize the post-Resurrection Jesus.

Mary Magdalene, who loved Jesus dearly as He had rescued her from a previous life in which seven demons tormented her, saw Him at the tomb early on the first Resurrection Sunday. As she wept in the garden upon discovering that the tomb was vacant, she noticed a man whom she thought was the gardener. She asked him to tell her where the soldiers who had been on guard took Jesus— if he knew (John 20:13-15). 

You might know that story and where it ends. The “gardener” is Jesus!



Two disciples on the road to Emmaus, who received the first post-Resurrection expository sermon on the Old Testament prophets, didn’t recognize the Object of those Scriptures standing before them.

Two disciples walked the road to Emmaus when Jesus began hiking stride for stride with them (see Luke 24:13f.). It was a few days after the Resurrection. They didn’t recognize Him either, even though He taught them from the Scripture about Himself the entire 7-mile journey.

Notice what happened (Luke 24:28-32 NKJV)— 

Then they drew near to the village where they were going, and He [indicated that He would have gone farther.

But they constrained Him, saying, “Abide with us, for it is toward evening, and the day is far spent.” 

And He went in to stay with them.

Now it came to pass, as He sat at the table with them, that He took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them. Then their eyes were opened and they knew Him; and He vanished from their sight.

 And they said to one another, “Did not our heart burn within us while He talked with us on the road, and while He opened the Scriptures to us?

The two of them immediately returned to Jerusalem, located the disciples (which infers these two must have been “insiders,” as the eleven were at that time hiding for fear of their lives), and exclaimed to the eleven that Jesus was alive. They detailed how they recognized Him only after He broke the bread, just as He did at the Passover meal the night before His betrayal (see Luke 24:35, 22:19)



The eleven still didn’t recognize Him— even after 3.5 years with Him, as well as the eyewitness accounts from trusted friends.

As the two travelers were speaking, Jesus appeared to all of them.  Yet even then His disciples didn't recognize Him. They were afraid and presumed He was a ghost, despite just hearing the previous story (Luke 24:38) and despite hearing accounts from other eyewitnesses about the empty tomb.



I know. The question arises…

Why does this matter? 

Here it is. It’s so simple— and obvious—that we often overlook it. Jesus (and we) look different post-Resurrection than we do pre-Resurrection. 

Jesus looked different before carrying the weight of sin, while carrying our guilt and shame, and after being free from it…

Because once the wounds of sin are dealt with, once you encounter redemption, you're identity isn’t only restored, you actually find yourself in a better place than you ever were before.


(In another video— — we saw this reality in Peter’s life— he looked radically different pre-Resurrection and post-Resurrection. We do, too!)



Life Lift slides.009.jpeg

LifeLift helps you find and fulfill your purpose. 

For an easy on-ramp, claim your free book at — and get introduced to the entire LifeLift framework. 

This video clip comes from the LifeLift workshop— available at 

It’s in the first part of the framework, Identity, where you learn who you are— 

Never miss a new post + podcast!

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates

We hate SPAM. We will never sell your information, for any reason.