Thursday within the Octave of the Feast of the Resurrection of our Lord
Posted on April 8, 2021 byunder
Scripture: St. Matthew 28:1-8 (NKJV)
28:1 Now after the Sabbath, as the first day of the week began to dawn, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to see the tomb. 2 And behold, there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat on it. 3 His countenance was like lightning, and his clothing as white as snow. 4 And the guards shook for fear of him, and became like dead men.
5 But the angel answered and said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. 6 He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. 7 And go quickly and tell His disciples that He is risen from the dead, and indeed He is going before you into Galilee; there you will see Him. Behold, I have told you.”
8 So they went out quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to bring His disciples word.
A blessed reversal of messages takes place in this event. The Roman guards were placed at the tomb to confirm the death of Jesus, to keep His followers away, and to display the reign of the worldly Roman empire as all-powerful. They may have been able to hold back men, but they could not guard it against the truly all-powerful Christ in His resurrection through the closed tomb.
Down comes an angel sent by God; rocking the earth like a superhero’s purposeful hard landing depicted in movies today. God’s truth has entered the scene, the Roman message of death is replaced with God’s messenger of Good News, a welcoming message of life and reconciliation through Christ Jesus that needed to be spread as soon as possible, and as far as possible. And so it did.
That same earth-shattering news is brought to your ears through God’s Divine Service to you each week. Is an earthquake needed to substantiate God at work? Not at all! God effectively does what He says through simple words, water, bread and wine, thanks to His all-powerful Word that endures forever. He is still spreading His message of life and reconciliation through those means—and rejoicing, we are to be recipients!
Prayer: Almighty God, who through Thine Only-Begotten Son, Jesus Christ, hast overcome death and opened unto us the gate of everlasting life, we humbly beseech Thee that, as Thou dost put into our minds good desires, so by Thy continual help we may bring the same to good effect; through the same Jesus Christ, Thy Son, our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. Amen.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.