April 5, 2015 – Easter Sunday

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We made it! Congratulations! Lent is nearly over and Easter is almost here! After 40 long days of seemingly endless fasting and praying and almsgiving, it’s time for us to leave the desert and rejoice in the great victory of the Resurrection. Hallelujah! He is risen!

Of everything we believe and proudly proclaim, the Resurrection of our Lord and Savior is central. The great mystery of our redemption is wrapped up in the understanding that our Lord defeated death through an instrument of death. He was brutally beaten, carried wooden beams up a hill, had nails driven into his hands and feet, asphyxiated as he hung upon the cross, and died the death that would save us all. And three days later, after Mary Magdalene sees the stone rolled away, Peter and John sprint to the tomb to find it empty. The linen cloths were cast off, the napkin on his head was folded neatly, and instantly they knew: this was not the work of grave robbers who would’ve just stolen the body and kept it wrapped up in the cloths…no, this is the Lord Himself. He has risen as He said He would!

On this most joyous day when we hunt for dyed eggs, wear seersucker suits and pastel colored dresses, and stuff our faces with Cadbury eggs, let’s take a moment and recall that miraculous and powerful moment when Mary saw the rolled away stone and Peter and John walked into the empty tomb. What must Peter have thought in that moment, the man who denied he even knew Jesus just three days prior? What joy must’ve filled John’s heart knowing that Mary, who he was charged to take care of, would get to see her Son again? Instantly, they believe, because they know, without any doubt, that Jesus Christ is back. Do we too have that same great faith? Do we too see the glory and majesty of the greatest and most victorious moment in human history?

Can we even imagine a Good Friday without an Easter Sunday? No! The two go hand in hand. Without His Resurrection, Jesus is just another philosopher spouting out nice phrases to be stitched on decorative pillows. But Jesus claimed to be the Messiah, the very Son of God sent to save us, and He proves Himself right. As the Lord of Heaven and Earth, Jesus Christ conquers all by defeating death and giving us all the remarkable chance to one day get to Heaven.

This is no small gift, but the most significant and important moment in the history of our lives, of Christianity and of the world! Jesus emptied Himself completely to suffer for us, obedient to the will of the Father for the sake of our salvation. And then, Jesus Christ rose from the dead so that we could one day rise with Him to eternal life! What a great joy and an incredible gift, worthy of shouting Hallelujah!

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