He is not Here . . . He is Risen!

Vol. 3 No. 13 – 4-1-2018

He is not here; He is risen! –Luke 24:6

One of the great miracles in all of history affected a Gallic slave girl, Blandia, in the year 177 A.D. She was set to face torture and death unless she would repudiate her living Lord, Jesus Christ.

Angry church leaders murdered friends before her eyes; they heated her on a grid-iron. They threw her to wild beasts.

They finally impaled her on a stake! Religious leaders indeed!

Blandia firmly believed in the world’s greatest miracle; the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. She was “dead-set” in holding onto the most stupendous events ever to occur in our world.

Scripture tells us that one Friday afternoon, about 3:00 p.m., over 2000 years ago, Jesus of Nazareth died on a Roman cross of torture, for death, and public display, and was buried before sunset. Historical records and the Scriptures prove that He left the tomb outside of Jerusalem on Sunday morning.

As I thought about this, there was a line of borrowing for Jesus. The Father sent Him to earth to be born of a virgin borrowed, He was born in a borrowed cave/stable, He was placed in a borrowed manger, and He was placed in a borrowed tomb at His death – but not for long. After three days He arose to live forever more, praise God!

We call this season Easter; in Old English it means “Springtime.”

Easter is the springtime both of nature and redemption. Some do not like the term, Easter; however, does mark the new beginning of life in old creation and the bright morning of our Christianity; when people are brought to light out of their darkness. Sadly, there are those even in the church that have never moved from their darkness to the light. The sit on their rusty dusties in the dark of the church searching for something, not knowing it is the LIGHT their souls are hungering for.

Three followers of Jesus look at the empty tomb on that Spring morning, and each sees the scene in their own way. Mary is first. One quick peek is enough. Too startled or emotionally upset, she does not give further evaluation.

John came running and glanced into the tomb. Peter comes running at the news the tomb is empty. Can you picture him; short, chunky, and hampered with a slow pace. The fisherman gives a rather critical examination, seeing stuff or the lack thereof, and comes up with a theory. Critical seeing is not always a “believing-seeing.” Praise God it changes.

The beloved John, that third member of the trio (Mary, Peter, and John) came into the empty tomb, venturing into the tomb (that seems bizarre, given what most people think of tombs). John comes away with an effective change. He came away having seen with his eyes, and the truth of what he saw moves deep into his heart; nothing would ever be the same. The seeing was full of comprehension and understanding.

For 20 centuries, Christians have been declaring that the Easter event is the literal bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ from the grave. Christians lived and died believing that they, too, will someday be brought back from death in a real body.

This faith changed lives like Blandina. It changes lives today. It has changed my life completely. This faith made heroes in the past, and makes heroes for Christ today.

Millions of believers throughout history have chosen to die as martyrs rather than deny their faith. Read some of the history of believers in Foxes Book of Martyrs.

Where do you stand – is your stand sure-footed on the awesome miracle of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior?

Seen on an insurance agency sign in our small town:

What do you mean I have to go to church this Sunday?

We were just there on Christmas!

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