Life on Easter Sunday; He is Risen! (Lent Series Week 8)
Read Matthew 28:1-10
There is no doubt that the morning was dark. There was an absence of light and a vacancy of joy as Jesus’ mother and dear friend visited his grave. Their weary minds were filled with the painful, unwanted memories of the last 72 hours. The optimism and joy that had characterized their lives with Jesus was gone. Suddenly, though, as if someone struck a match in the pitch black, a sudden and unexpected messenger yanked their minds back into the present.
“He isn’t here,” the angel said. The past was wiped away like a cloth clearing a foggy window, and all their senses, thoughts, and emotions were focused like a laser beam on the present moment and one pressing question: where is Jesus?
As they tried to connect the dots, the last page of a dark chapter closes and the hope of a blank page opens. Like the moments before your bride walks down the aisle, or the night before you go into labor, there’s a sense that soon – very soon – everything is going to change. “He would be killed, but on the third day he would be raised from the dead.” (Matt. 16:21)
Overwhelmed with joy, the women rushed to tell everyone the good news of Easter: He is Risen!
On their way, they met Jesus! What an incredible experience – from mourning to joy in a few moments.
Can you imagine that? The friends of Jesus had seen some miraculous things. Lazarus was dead, a young girl was dead, and both were raised by Jesus. But there is a crucial difference. None of these people raised themselves. Eventually, they would die, just like the rest of us.
When Jesus walked out of the tomb, he did it of his own accord. He did it because he is God and he alone could conquer death forever. In that one act of holy power, he reversed the curse of our unholy rebellion. Jesus lived the sinless life none of us will, he willingly died the death all of us deserve, and he powerfully rose again so all of us can.
“He lives, He lives! Christ Jesus lives today! He walks with me and talks with me along life’s narrow way” wrote Alfred H. Ackley, the great hymn writer.
There is nothing in the world more worth celebrating than the one who offers life in spite of sin and in spite of death. This is what we celebrate on Easter Sunday and every day we walk with him.
He is alive! Turn up the music, enjoy the food, hug and love your family, friends, and neighbors, for this truth has changed everything – “Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and by believing in him you will have life by the power of his name.” (John 20:31)
Why are you most thankful that Jesus walked out of that tomb? Reflect on it today.
Do you know someone who needs to hear about the power over death that Jesus offers? Ask God to grant you a moment and the courage needed to tell them.
He is Risen! Celebrate today!
Check out the first post in our Lenten devotional here.
This was an excerpt from Easter is Coming, a Devotional Journey with Jesus. For all six weeks of Lent devotionals, please download the e-book here.
Spend some time expressing your gratitude to him – in prayer, song, art, written words – or any way you like.