Sun, 3 May 2015
April 5, 2015
Synopsis: Today we gather to celebrate the resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I think it is fitting that we celebrate the resurrection when there are so many things coming to life and a new growing season is in full bloom. But Spring is not why we are called to celebrate. We are called to celebrate because it marks the time that Jesus rose from the grave. The Christian calendar may start with the birth of Christ but it comes into full bloom with the celebration of the resurrection. The dark night is past and our JOY is Resurrected in Christ Jesus.
I love to turn to the stories of that first Easter morning. Today I will read again the story of Mary coming to the tomb to anoint the body of Christ (John 20:11-18). She came weeping, grieving searching for a way to express her love and devotion for Him only to find the body was gone. Now what could she do? The angels of the Lord speak, but she cannot hear them. Overwhelmed with grief she doesn’t even realize who Jesus was when she encountered Him until He calls her name. He’s alive! Mary experienced JOY Resurrected.
For some reason while Mary’s story this year reading I was drawn to the story of Miriam’s song (Exodus 15:1-21). I visualize Miriam and the women singing and dancing with the JOY of their deliverance from bondage in Egypt and I think surely Mary’s Joy is not less full. All of a sudden I visualize Mary leaving the encounter of the resurrected Lord singing and dancing in the streets on her way to tell the others that she has experience JOY Resurrected. The perfumes she brought to anoint the dead would have been giving a sweet aroma to those she passed along the way.
At the end of the sermon this Easter Sunday I want to invite believers to come forward and be anointed with the Oil of Gladness (olive oil with frankincense and Myrrh).
Scripture Text (NLT): John 20:11-18; Exodus 15:1-21
Scripture Reading: Exodus 15:19-21