Spirituality

Up from the grave He arose!

Empty graves

Today in church, our Pastor spoke about the need for resurrection in our lives. How the disciples were in self-imposed lock-down and full of grief and loss and fear – how we too, in the midst of this pandemic, in these crazy times, have been lost in grief and fear. He spoke of how Jesus came to them – His Resurrected presence right there in the midst of all their anguish.

Our Pastor said, even more than comfort, more than presence, for instance – Jesus brought them resurrection – offered resurrection from what they were struggling with on the inside. He offered them freedom, life and peace.

So as I have been pondering his words, this passage in Matthew came to my mind.

It records a curious incident that took place – this is what it says:

At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook, the rocks split and the tombs broke open. The bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life. They came out of the tombs after Jesus’ resurrection and went into the holy city and appeared to many people.

Matthew 27: 51 – 53

There were many empty graves, the graves of holy people who had died were raised to life.

Raised to life

And I couldn’t help but think, what have we buried in our lives?

What graves have we been digging because of these challenging times?

What needs to be raised to life in us?

Have we buried hope – cried out with Psalmist time and again – “How long, oh Lord, how long?” Psalm 13:1a.

Have we buried our trust in others, feeling let down or disappointed – or lost our faith in God?

Did we bury love and live now controlled by fear?

Perfect love

We were encouraged today to remember that:

Perfect love drives out fear.

1 John 4:18

We call to mind that hope is a Person, and that Person is the Resurrected Jesus. That we do not place our hope in results, but in the care and mercy and sovereignty of God.

To put trust our in others can be folly, because we know people inevitably let us down. But that does not mean that there should not be integrity and honesty, not at all!

We cry out with all of our hearts, “Lord, I believe, help my unbelief.” Mark 9:24b.

Out of the tombs

In the passage in Matthew 27:53 it says – They came out of the tombs after Jesus’ resurrection and went into the holy city and appeared to many people.

It’s Resurrection Sunday.

It’s after Jesus’ resurrection, might we too, rise up out of our self-constructed tombs because of the hope we have from Hope Himself?

Might we remember this? –

 And the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him. He {Jesus} unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
    because he has anointed me
    to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives
    and recovering of sight to the blind,
    to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”

Luke 4: 17 – 19

This is the story we have to share, this is the good news!

Up from the Grave He Arose

The old hymn puts it this way –

Low in the grave he lay, Jesus my Savior,
waiting the coming day, Jesus my Lord!
Up from the grave he arose;
with a mighty triumph o’er his foes;
he arose a victor from the dark domain,
and he lives forever, with his saints to reign.
He arose! He arose! Hallelujah! Christ arose!

Robert Lowry

There is death, and pain, and there is struggle, yet there is victory too. There is the Resurrection.

And One Day more than this, much more! –

“See! The home of God is with men, and he will live among them. They shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and will wipe away every tear from their eyes. Death shall be no more, and never again shall there be sorrow or crying or pain. For all those former things are past and gone.”

Revelation 21:4 Phillips

Hallelujah, what a Saviour!

Author

judy.g.gibson@gmail.com

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