I Cor. 16:9  “For a wide door for effective work has opened to me, and there are many adversaries.”

March 30, 2007

Easter Season

It is interesting to note that in early church history Good Friday was celebrated more than Easter. Now for us Easter is one of the main festivals of the Church Year. If Christ be not raised, our faith is vain and we are yet in our sins. But He has abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the Good News. ·        Easter Sunday – Ap. 8th – Ep.: 1 Cor. 5:6-8, Gos.: Mk. 16:1-8 ·        1st Sunday after Easter – Ap. 15th – Ep.: 1 Jn. 5:4-10, Gos.: Jn. 20:19-31 ·        2nd Sunday – Ap. 22nd – Ep.: 1 Pet. 2:21-25, Gos.: Jn. 10:11-16 ·        3rd Sunday – Ap. 29th – Ep.: 1 Pet. 2:11-20, Gos.: Jn. 16:16-23a ·        4th Sunday – May 6th – Ep.: Jas. 1:16-31, Gos.: Jn. 16:5-15 ·        5th Sunday – May 13th – Ep.: Jas. 1:22-27, Gos.: Jn. 16:23-30 Ascension Day is 40 days after Easter. We have a worship service on this day to remember that as He went so He will come again to take us to be with Him. ·        Asc. Day – May 17th – Ep.: Acts 1:1-11, Gos.: Mk. 16:14-20 ·        Sunday after Ascension – May 20th – Ep.: 1 Pet. 4:7-11, Gos.: Jn. 15:26-16:4 Pentecost is 50 days after Easter and the birthday of the New Testament church when the Holy Spirit manifested Himself as the one who would impart God’s gifts to us to be His witnesses to all and in all of the world. ·        Ep.: Acts 2:1-13, Gos.: Jn. 14:23-31       Baptisms “Make disciples of all nations baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit…” These are familiar words to us as we seek to carry them out. From some recent reports we read with Joy:

  • In the CLCK Nairobi, Kenya,  Pastor Jeremiah (CLCEA) helped Charles with baptism of 17 adults and 21 children at Nyahururu, 21 adults and 6 children at Pondo, 44 at Muraga,
  • In the BELC, India,  Pastor Victor in Kadapa Dist. reports 183 baptisms for the year, Pastor Moses in Nellore reports 18 baptisms in January, in Vaniyambadi Dist. Pastor Sampath reports 15 baptisms in March.

And then we remember the Lord also said, “Teaching them to observe all things…” We dare never just baptize and not teach. He commanded both. Let us all remember how Paul did not hesitate to speak the whole counsel of God. Acts 20:27 Our task as ministers of the Word and servants of The Lord is to study to then impart the Word to others. The apostles after the resurrection were ‘new’ men so to speak. They spoke with a boldness the wonderful Word. May we gain new boldness from once again viewing the empty tomb and the living Lord this Easter. We dare not plant a new plant in the desert and then not water again. It will live for a while but then die. We baptize and with that the implanted Word comes to grant life. After that there must continue that life-giving Word to sustain the new life, as water does a plant in a dry land.

Jesus’ Resurrection

Unless we read over all four accounts carefully we can get confused as to what and when things happened in connection with our Lord rising again.

How many women went to the tomb? a) Mt. says Mary Magdalene and the other Mary 28:l. b) Mk. says Mary M., Mary the mother of James, and Salome 16:1. c) Lk. says “the women” 24:1. d) Jn. Says Mary M. 20:1.  

Who was at the tomb? a)      Mt. says an angel came down, opened the tomb, then sat on the stone. His appearance was like lightning and he was dressed in white clothes 28:2. b)      Mk. says a young man dressed in a white robe was sitting on the right 16:5. c)      Lk. says two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them (the women) 24:4. d)      Jn. says two angels were seen at the head and foot of where Jesus had been laid.    This was after the earlier trip and after Peter and John had visited 20:11-12   When we put this all together we have a very good picture with no contradictions.

Women Come to the Tomb. When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might anoint the body of the Lord. Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb, and they asked each other, “Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?” But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had already been rolled away. Mt. 28:1, Mk. 16:1-4

Resurrection Announced. As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed. Mk.16:5 “Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid Him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter, ‘He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see Him, just as he told you.” Mt. 28:5-7

Women Reminded  of Prophecy. While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. In their fright the women bowed to them. “Why do you look for the living among the dead?” the men questioned. “He is not here; He has risen! Remember how He told you, while He was still with you in Galilee: ‘The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’” Then they remembered His words. Lk. 24:4-8

Women Go Away Fearful. Trembling and bewildered, the women went out and fled from the tomb. They said nothing to anyone, because they were afraid.

Peter and John Told. Mary of Magdala came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put Him.!” Jn. 20:2

Peter and John View the Tomb. So Peter and the other disciple started for the tomb. Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. He looked into the tomb and saw the strips of linen lying there, but he did not go in. Then Simon Peter arrived and went into the tomb. “He saw the strips of linen lying there, as well as the burial cloth that had been around Jesus’ head. The cloth was folded up by itself, separate from the linen. Finally the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw and believed. (They still did not understand from the Scriptures that Jesus had to rise from the dead.) Then the disciples went back to their homes.” Jn. 20:3-10, Lk. 24:12

Jesus with Mary Magdalene. When Jesus rose early on the first day of the week, He appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom He had driven seven demons Mk. 16:9. Mary stood outside the tomb crying. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb and saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus’ body had been, one at the head and the other at the foot. They asked her, “Woman, why are you crying?” “They have taken my Lord away,” she said. “and I don’t know where they have put Him.” At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus. “Woman,” He said, “why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?” Thinking it was the gardener, she said, “Sir, if you have carried Him away, tell me where you have put Him, and I will get Him.” Jesus said to her, “Mary.” She turned toward Him and cried out in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means Teacher). Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet returned to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am returning to My Father and your Father, to My God and your God.” Jn. 20:11-17

Jesus Appears to the Women. So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell His disciples. Suddenly Jesus met them. “Greetings,” he said. They came to Him, clasped His feet and worshiped Him. Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see Me.” Mt. 28:8-10

Pastor Koenig