The Resurrection - Wide Eyed - John 20:1-18
April 18, 2022, 8:00 AM

"Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God” Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: "I have seen the Lord!" And she told them that he had said these things to her." The disciples came to see the place where His body had been layed. When Mary saw Him alive, she worshiped her Savior. 

In this passage, we are reminded Jesus tomb is empty as we celebrate the resurrection of His body.  It is a new body that is not bound by death, not hindered by walls or space. Jesus could do more amazing things than what His previous physical body allowed.  Jesus was no longer bound to this earth. 

He could no longer be betrayed or killed or die again like Lazarus. His body was not incorruptible. Lives were tremendously changed after seeing the resurrected Lord.  Immediately the Christian church began and hundreds followed because His identity was no longer hidden from the people as it was when He was growing up in Nazareth. Jesus was God, come to earth as a man. He took our sin upon His body. With His suffering, death, and being raised to life, He defeated the powers of Satan and death, He said "all who believe in me will never die."

With Covid restrictions over the past two years, this has been a different Easter time. Holy Week services and church services fall somewhat short on experience through media rather than being in each other’s presence when we greet one another with the joy because of the risen Lord. Songs are best when sung together. Offerings given as part of a worship service are more meaningful. However Christians celebrate, most churches are now using a variety of ways to proclaim Jesus is risen. This is the message our world needs to hear again and again. Jesus is alive and hasn't forgotten His promise of returning again.       

Drawing on expert testimony first shared in his blockbuster book The Case for Christ, Lee Strobel,  a reporter for the Chicago Tribune and avid atheist set out to disprove the story of Jesus so he examined evidence.  Was it a superstitious myth or life-changing reality? According to the evidence and interviews of a variety of people, the startling findings changed Strobel from atheism into a follower of Jesus Christ. He eventually quit his job and joined the staff at the Willowcreek Church near Chicago.   

Mary was introduced to the message by the angels who said, "Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen just as he said.”  When Mary had her meeting with the living Lord, she was given the message - go and tell the others the good news. The resurrection made hope a reality.

Application:  God continues to bid men and women to come and see, then believe, and then tell others "He had risen!".   

Prayer:   Oh, Lord, that I may see, believe and tell others of this glorious resurrection message.   

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