Happy Easter and Resurrection Day! Today, over 2,000 years ago, Jesus was raised from the dead after dying for us 3 days earlier to save us all from our sins. He was raised up from the dead so we could all have a right relationship with God based on faith. Here are some encouraging verses about our Lord Jesus Christ, who IS Risen!
1Early on Sunday morning, as the new day was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went out to visit the tomb.
2Suddenly there was a great earthquake! For an angel of the Lord came down from heaven, rolled aside the stone, and sat on it. 3His face shone like lightning, and his clothing was as white as snow. 4The guards shook with fear when they saw him, and they fell into a dead faint.
5Then the angel spoke to the women. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I know you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. 6He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead, just as he said would happen. Come, see where his body was lying. 7And now, go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and he is going ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there. Remember what I have told you.”
8The women ran quickly from the tomb. They were very frightened but also filled with great joy, and they rushed to give the disciples the angel’s message. 9And as they went, Jesus met them and greeted them. And they ran to him, grasped his feet, and worshiped him. 10Then Jesus said to them, “Don’t be afraid! Go tell my brothers to leave for Galilee, and they will see me there.”
The Great Commission
16Then the eleven disciples left for Galilee, going to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17When they saw him, they worshiped him—but some of them doubted!
18Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth.19Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.20Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
Christ is Risen!
5The women were terrified and bowed with their faces to the ground. Then the men asked, “Why are you looking among the dead for someone who is alive? 6He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead! Remember what he told you back in Galilee, 7that the Son of Man must be betrayed into the hands of sinful men and be crucified, and that he would rise again on the third day.”
Jesus Appears to Mary Magdalene
11Mary was standing outside the tomb crying, and as she wept, she stooped and looked in. 12She saw two white-robed angels, one sitting at the head and the other at the foot of the place where the body of Jesus had been lying. 13“Dear woman, why are you crying?” the angels asked her.
“Because they have taken away my Lord,” she replied, “and I don’t know where they have put him.”
14She turned to leave and saw someone standing there. It was Jesus, but she didn’t recognize him. 15“Dear woman, why are you crying?” Jesus asked her. “Who are you looking for?”
She thought he was the gardener. “Sir,” she said, “if you have taken him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will go and get him.”
16“Mary!” Jesus said.
She turned to him and cried out, “Rabboni!” (which is Hebrew for “Teacher”).
17“Don’t cling to me,” Jesus said, “for I haven’t yet ascended to the Father. But go find my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’”
18Mary Magdalene found the disciples and told them, “I have seen the Lord!” Then she gave them his message.
Jesus Appears to His Disciples
19That Sunday evening the disciples were meeting behind locked doors because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. Suddenly, Jesus was standing there among them! “Peace be with you,” he said. 20As he spoke, he showed them the wounds in his hands and his side. They were filled with joy when they saw the Lord! 21Again he said, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you.”22Then he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit.23If you forgive anyone’s sins, they are forgiven. If you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”
The Ascension of Jesus
6So when the apostles were with Jesus, they kept asking him, “Lord, has the time come for you to free Israel and restore our kingdom?”
7He replied, “The Father alone has the authority to set those dates and times, and they are not for you to know.8But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
9After saying this, he was taken up into a cloud while they were watching, and they could no longer see him. 10As they strained to see him rising into heaven, two white-robed men suddenly stood among them. 11“Men of Galilee,” they said, “why are you standing here staring into heaven? Jesus has been taken from you into heaven, but someday he will return from heaven in the same way you saw him go!”
This same resurrection power that raised Christ from the dead over 2,000 years ago is in you who are children of God (who have been baptized and have the gift of the Holy Spirit! Today, let God resurrect your health, your finances, your relationships, your faith, your dreams! Whatever currently lays dormant in you, I declare will be resurrected in the name of Jesus! As Jesus told his disciples when he returned from the grave, peace be with you! Have a blessed day and let God’s resurrection power live on in you 365 (or 366 on a leap year) days a year! Let us all rejoice that our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ lives! Hallelujah!