Imagine what it must have been like early in the morning on the first day of the week as the women took spices to the tomb of Jesus. They had worked the day before the Sabbath on the preparations to follow the observance of the law. Their Savior had been crucified, but they continued their duties out of faith.
“Hope begins in the dark, the stubborn hope that if you just show up and try to do the right thing, the dawn will come. You wait and watch and work: you don’t give up.”Anne Lamont
On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: ‘The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.'” Then they remembered his words. – Luke 24: 1-8
The darkness of the day of Jesus’ crucifixion consumed the hope of the disciples and they ran off and hid in fear. But the women consciously chose to obey God when they still kept the Sabbath holy.
When the times get dark, Satan wants to stop the things that connect us to God. But we have to remain faithful despite what is going on around us. This pandemic has kept many of us away from our churches and know that God is still working. It may seem like hell is winning…but God is still working.
Did Satan keep us busy enough during this dark time to allow him to create a wedge between us and God? That has certainly been his intention, to create doubt in our minds. Is Jesus real? Does God really exist?
We have to allow faith to do what it does. Take some time to rest and recuperate, heal during this time. Keeping hope alive….
It makes no sense that God is going to win at this. Jesus is dead. Many who followed Jesus couldn’t comprehend that there was still a way for him to overcome death. He even told his followers that this would happen, but they didn’t understand.
Faith alone is not what destroyed death or despair. It isn’t designed to do this alone. This is the paradox of faith: we don’t always have the right answers. We can’t always find the words to express what we know to be true and possible. But, we can prepare and rest, as the women did. Waiting while better is on it’s way. Even if the Lord isn’t present, in the women, the ways of the Lord are still powerful.
If God says he’s working, he is. We must live our faith out loud tomorrow.
For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And he died for all , that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.2 Cor. 5: 14-15
He loves you!
Fight. Lead with love, even in the dark times. We have to because we have the love of Jesus in our heart.
He came to save all. How did Jesus die for all? In the sense that His death is able to save all who will come to Him and is a demonstration of God’s love to all. All are not saved because Jesus died…but all can be.
He died for us, so we should live for him! The old has gone, the new is here!
Worship to Christ. New creation to all those who are in Christ.
Easter centers us in our pain. A fresh reminder that the ugliness of a fallen world – where sin’s tentacles reach into every part of life, bringing death and despair to every corner of the world – has an expiration date!
The empty tomb reminds us that the darkness will end. Our victory over death and it’s sting comes with our risen Savior. He paid for the sins that would give death the victory, silencing the roar of Hell forever!
I think the biggest take away of this sermon was the first words spoken by our pastor. Regardless of why you’re here today; whether you came out of tradition, you were dragged here, or you come every Sunday, this was done for you. Jesus died for the simple fact that he loves you. It doesn’t matter what your past is, he died so that all might be saved!
Rejoice, for He is risen!