“Very early on Sunday morning the women went to the tomb, carrying the spices that they had prepared. 2When they found the stone rolled away from the entrance, 3they went in. But they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus, 4and they did not know what to think.
"Suddenly two men in shining white clothes stood beside them. 5The women were afraid and bowed to the ground. But the men said, “Why are you looking in the place of the dead for someone who is alive? 6Jesus isn’t here! He has been raised from death. Remember that while he was still in Galilee, he told you, 7’The Son of Man will be handed over to sinners who will nail him to a cross. But three days later he will rise to life.’ “ 8Then they remembered what Jesus had said.
"9-10Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and some other women were the ones who had gone to the tomb. When they returned, they told the eleven apostles and the others what had happened. 11The apostles thought it was all nonsense, and they would not believe.
"12But Peter ran to the tomb. And when he stooped down and looked in, he saw only the burial clothes. Then he returned, wondering what had happened."
If you thought Easter was about the bunny rabbit, chocolate and hiding Easter eggs, you missed the real reason. I know, it’s so easy to go the way of popular thought and custom by doing those things during religious holidays that have no real connection to the purpose of the Holy day involved.
To be sure, I enjoy the bunny rabbit, had some when I was a kid. Don’t tell my wife or my doctor, but I enjoy chocolate and I enjoy watching the children have fun at an Easter egg hunt.
Let’s focus on the real reason why we celebrate Easter and that is in connection with the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ from the grave. As a community, we came together this past Friday to worship on a day that is called “Good Friday,” although it is about the death of our Lord on the cross.
With modern thought in many churches these days where the symbol of the cross cannot be found I was blessed to see the display in the sanctuary of the Greensburg United Methodist Church where three crosses stood and the one in the middle was draped in black.
Pastor Wolford of the Christian Church delivered a wonderful message about the cross and the great need for our churches to be unified for the cause of Christ for the purpose of reaching out to the sinner and presenting the message of our Risen Savior, Jesus Christ.
As we celebrate this Holy Day of Easter tomorrow, let’s come together and as we greet one another say this, “He is Risen.” And the response is: “He is Risen indeed.”
May you experience a new resurrection in your life during this time of celebration.
The Most Rev. Michael Layne, PhD, ThD, is a Bishop in the Lutheran Orthodox Church and can be reached at 812-614-2160 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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