For some of you today will be another day of labor, some of you today will be a flurry of activity consisting of new clothes and going to church. Some of you will be going over your notes making sure your sermon is ready. Some of you will be meeting in secret in fear of your lives. Some of you will still be in bed.
But consider this, because of a Sunday over 1900 years ago something changed the world. Because of this one event nothing is the same any more. Calendars are no longer in reference to cities or other events Anno Domini began. Because the tomb was empty, because the stone was rolled away nothing is ever the same.
And that is the good news. It is good news because Christ being raised was for our justification (Rom. 4:25). Christ being raised has delivered us from God’s coming wrath. (1 Thess. 1:10) Christ being raised from the dead he is now interceding for us. (Rom. 8:34) Because Christ was raised we too will be raised from the dead. (1 Cor. 6:14) Christ being raised we too will be in the presence of God. (2 Cor. 4:14) Because being raised he now rules being given authority over all things. (Eph. 1:20-22)
So today let us echo the proclaimation: Christ has risen! He has risen indeed! Amen.
Resurrection Sunday 2017
How can we glorify God?
You shall therefore love the Lord your God and keep his charge, his statutes, his rules, and his commandments always.
How many persons are there in God?
2 Corinthians 13:14
The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.
With the new year comes a new catechism. Theses questions and answers are from the New City Catechism. Android users can get this as an app from the Google Store.
What is our only hope in life and death?
For none of us lives to himself, and none of us dies to himself. For if we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord’s.
Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel, you who lead Joseph like a flock! You who are enthroned upon the cherubim, shine forth. Restore us, O God; let your face shine, that we may be saved! Turn again, O God of hosts! Look down from heaven, and see; But let your hand be on the man of your right hand, the son of man whom you have made strong for yourself! Psalm 80:1,3,14,17
This psalm reflects both the anticipation of Christ’s incarnation and the coming again of Christ on the Last Day when he comes in glory to judge the living and the dead. Both in some ways are fearful and wonderful things. Consider the message of the angel to the shepherds on that night; Fear Not! (Luke 2:10) Here the incarnation is a cause of rejoicing and wonder as the second person of the Trinity takes on flesh.
But there will come another time when the incarnate Word arrives this time with all his glory and ” He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning nor crying nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away” which is both a fearful and wonderful thing.
In keeping with Advent season here is a hymn written by Charles Wesley and published in 1744. Again it expresses that tension exists for both Israel at the time of the incarnation and the Church as it looks forward to Christ’s return.
Say to the daughter of Zion, Behold, your king is coming to you, humble, and mounted on a donkey, and on a colt, the foal of a beast of burden.
Those of you who hold to the RPW probably won’t be having an Advent service today. But those who have come from a liturgical calendar tradition recognize that this is the season of Advent.
Advent is the season that proceeds Christmas. During this time we look forward to Christ’s return and at the same time we look back to Christ’s first coming, his incarnation. So today take some time to meditate on what it means to prepare for the coming of Christ how we like Israel looked forward to his coming. And how we can rejoice that he did come.