24/04/2011

Awesome resurrection!

One thing in life is that the unusual becomes the usual. Flying for instance, we take it as normal. Twenty years ago, most of us did not have a computer. Also, now we all have a mobile phone or the latest android in our pocket. We can get accustomed to things. Monday evening, your young child is shouting 'boo' to you unexpectedly which causes you jump out of your skin. If he/she keeps on doing it all week, by Friday, you won't even react. The unfamiliar becomes familiar. Think about a new car and all the little gadgets, we love them for a while and they surprise us, three months later, we take them for granted. 
We've lived with Jesus for a while, has He become familiar too?
We start with an empty tomb and the disciples are scratching their heads, they are puzzled. By the time Jesus was buried, he had been battered out of recognition, beaten, whipped, bruised, spat upon, a spear stuck into his side. He was a mess and he was dead.The disciples were shattered.
What was unusual was that the strips of linen left there, the only thing that was of value.
We read in John 20 : 6 - 7 Simon Peter arrived after him and went into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there. 7He also saw the cloth that had been on Jesus' head. It wasn't lying with the strips of linen but was rolled up separately.   Another unusual thing was to admit that they had not understood what happened (v.9) 9They didn't know yet what Scripture meant when it said that Jesus had to come back to life. They are being very honest. Jesus has told them that he would die and resurrect three times, i.e. 18 month before, in the town Caesarea Philippi  Mark 8:27-30, their ears got blocked, they didn't hear it. John is honest. If it was made up, they would have been sitting waiting in front of the tomb!  Something else very unusual to note. Jesus appears to women. This was a patriarchal society where the women were not deemed as reliable witnesses in court. Jesus loves to break the rules. Some suggest that he revived in the tomb but as I mentioned it before, it is out of question, since he had been crucified.  Jesus is not recognised until he says Mary. Why? Raising up from the dead, he has been transformed. Go back to 1 Cor 15: 53-54  For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality. 54 When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.  This transformation is for us in eternity.The New Life is for us today. What has happened at Easter? Death has been defeated, new life is born.
Do we stand by our convictions? Do we draw it to others despite what they say. Jesus brings life! We must be careful not to get too familiar whereby we lose a sense of awe and wonder! Let us share it with others! Let's ask them: do you know what Jesus did ? He rose from the dead ! Isn't it awesome! with the same freshness as more than 2000 years ago.
These are my notes from this morning Easter service, courtesy from Rev S. A. 
My friends, have a blessed Easter. In Jesus' name. Amen. N.

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