“When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.” Colossians 2:13-15
“O’ death, where is your sting? O’ hell, where is your victory? O’ church, come stand in the LIGHT! Our God is NOT dead. He is ALIVE! He is ALIVE!” Matt Maher
- Jesus, the lamb of God, with arms open wide and hands nailed to an old rugged cross, took the punishment that we deserved. Grab your Bible, journal, a pen, and plan to “roll the stone away.” Today, as we culminate our
Holy Week studies, take some extra time to truly ponder and marvel about the Resurrection. Because of His shed blood, we now have peace with God and forgiveness of our sins. We are no longer slaves to the sins that have so easily entangled us. Now, that is good news! May you be filled with the joy of finding an empty tomb this Easter morning!
- Read one or all of the following Gospel accounts of Resurrection Sunday: John 20:1-18, Matthew 28: 1-10, Mark 16:1-11, or Luke 24:1-12.
I love that there are four different accounts of the Resurrection story. This story is obviously worth telling more than once! These Scriptures became extra precious to me while I was in college. While in a public speaking class, I had to write and share an essay in front of the class about who I would want to meet if I could go back in time and why. I didn’t have to think for too long. Of course, I thought of Jesus first but then ended up choosing Mary Magdalene because of the great honor she had in being the first person to see Christ after His Resurrection. I admire her immediate obedience to Christ’s command to go and tell others. The Lord chose her over Peter or even his beloved John! I resonate with the fact that He chose a broken woman to spread the Good News first. Maybe you can identify too.
Mary had seven demons called out of her by Jesus. I find it extremely powerful to ponder that she, like us, had sinned. All sin is like a crimson stain to God, yet the Lord forgave Mary Magdalene and set her free! He equally and readily forgives our sins when we ask Him. Like us, Mary had much for which to be forgiven; she devoted herself to the Lord in gratitude. She, like the other disciples, followed Him wholeheartedly. I believe it is because of this devotion that God knew she would be effective in running to tell the others of Christ’s Resurrection. We find her in the beginning of the passage weeping for the loss of her beloved Lord; she pleads with the man she thinks is the gardener when Jesus calls her by name. Then, she recognizes Him and cries out “Rabboni!” Mary saw with new eyes her Savior, her Lord, her “Rabboni!” What astonishing news: He came back just like he said he would! Death did not have power over Him! He was alive and indeed the Son of God, and He called her by name!
Sister, God loves us so much that He calls us each by name. He has saved each of us from our former way of living and personally calls us to follow Him. Jesus died for us before we had our “act together.” While we were hopeless, He reached down and saved us, not by any merit of our own, but by His great love for us. I hope you can feel that love extended to you right now! Is your heart swelling with adoration and awe like Mary’s? Do you feel compelled to share the Good News too? On that first day, the women saw angels guarding the tomb who told them NOT to be afraid. Then they saw Jesus, who also told them not to be afraid. Can you imagine Mary’s state of bewilderment, standing there trembling and scared, but also full of joy at the same time? The burst of emotion, the revelation, the hope of seeing her Savior again! The joy these women experienced on that resurrection morning caused them to fall on their faces in worship, leaving all doubt and worry aside. These passionate women were the first commissioned to tell the Gospel story! They ran in celebration away from the tomb with the greatest news ever to tell! What a glorious task to fulfill and one that we are asked to continue! Wow!
Blessings and Love,
Questions to Ponder
- How can we carry out the call of the Lord if we are afraid of the unknown? In all four Gospels, the women are told not to be afraid. Fear is an ugly tool of the enemy to keep us stationary and unproductive. Ask the Lord what fears you have. Be encouraged to lay your fears at the cross. Believe that Christ died on the cross, not only to take away our sins, pain, and shame, but also our fears.
- How can we live like Mary, with a passion to share everything God is doing in our lives?
- How can we encourage our children and spouses to share the Good News that Jesus is alive?
- Pray and ask God to reveal to you and your children how and with whom you can share the Good News. Write down their names in your journal and continue to ask God to help you talk freely about Jesus daily. I pray you will be encouraged to share boldly like Mary—with joy. Tell others about the gift of His son with whom we can live forever!
Take a few minutes to read and meditate on Colossians 2:13-15. We are alive in Christ! Jesus laid down his life so that we can be forgiven. Instead of letting sin hold us back, we are free to live boldly for Him! We should be so compelled to share the reason for our faith and the hope of salvation! Let’s not just talk about it, but run to tell others. We cannot hide the light of Jesus! This Easter, rejoice out loud to any who will hear: Christ is RISEN!