Easter Sunday, April 16, 2017

Posted on Apr 14 2017

Bible Background: Luke has approached the story of Jesus as an historian, and he has the most to say about the resurrection of Jesus-because it prepares the way for his 2nd book, the Acts of the Apostles.

Digging Deeper: 1. Luke has had a group of women disciples, following Jesus since Galilee, supporting him in various ways, and present at the foot of the cross. Now, this group of women comes to the tomb on the first day of the week, with burial spices, planning to finish what they couldn’t do on the sabbath day.

2. They find the tomb empty! And two messengers/angels startle them. (In scripture, the appearance of an angel always is a shock!) The women are asked “Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen!” Would you have an answer to that question?

3. The two men help the women remember what Jesus had told them would take place. When the DO remember, they return home and tell the male disciples. That group just flat out does not believe the women’s story! How often has your ‘story’ not been believed? How often has the testimony of women or children (or those of less class or power) been cast aside?

4. “It seemed like an idle tale.” In a way, the male disciples can be excused. We would have thought the same thing! Peter does get up and runs to the tomb, and sees an empty tomb (nobody sees the resurrection itself), and is “amazed!” How much are we amazed by the works of God? The power of God? The love of God?

5. In Luke 24, the story of resurrection and the evidence and the testimony continue to unfold as two disciples are walking home to the village of Emmaus that afternoon. The risen Jesus accompanies them, but is hidden from them. Then, in the breaking of bread, they recognize him! There’s at least one more appearance the risen Jesus makes to a large group in Jerusalem. Then he sends them out to preach “repentance and forgiveness” in his name, to all the earth.

6. Pastor David Lose notes “that if you can swallow all this easily-you’re not paying attention!” Resurrection is a hard thing to wrap our minds around! It breaks all the rules! It’s not easy to believe or to run with! But that is the challenge before us! What part of this can you fathom? What part can you help someone else grasp? What part are you struggling with? (Don’t forget how those first disciples struggled to “get it” too!)