Nowhere, anywhere, at any time in human history will you find more powerful, meaningful words than these: "He has risen, just as He said." (Matthew 28:6) With these words, angels greet the women who had come to anoint Jesus’ corpse on the third day after His crucifixion. "Just as He said" is a reminder that they should have known the tomb would be empty. Why did they forget? Why do we so easily forget what Jesus has told us – His commands and His comforts, His precepts and His promises? Worry, fear, confusion, and grief played a part in the women’s forgetfulness, and we sometimes focus on those and lose sight of Jesus as well. We’re just as likely to forget because we are self-absorbed and simply don’t listen or take seriously what Jesus has said. But there is victory in these words to pardon our poor listening and to forgive our forgetfulness: "He has risen, just as he said."
And because Jesus lives, the power of sin, death, and the devil is destroyed! What is sin when God has shown that He accepted His Son’s sacrifice for you by raising Him from the dead? What is death when the Lord's tomb is empty? What is the devil when he can no longer hold sin and death over you? Jesus’ resurrection transforms and shapes everything – because Jesus lives, in Him you live. No matter what you face, in Him you live. No matter what you endure, in Him you live. No matter when you die, in Him you live. Name the disease, the ailment, the hardship, the sin, the guilt, the loss, the disappointment – no matter what you may suffer, in Him you live! Does that sound defiant? It is! Such is our confidence because "HE HAS RISEN, JUST AS HE SAID."
Come visit us at CHRIST OUR REDEEMER for more of this message of God's grace!
Christ Our Redeemer Lutheran Church
Daniel is the Staff Minister at Christ Our Redeemer Lutheran Church, El Paso TX.