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Sunday, March 27, 2016

He is Alive! Happy Easter

He is alive!  The tomb is empty.  Death could not hold Him!

Early on Sunday morning, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and found that the stone had been rolled away from the entrance. She ran and found Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved. She said, “They have taken the Lord’s body out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put him!”
Peter and the other disciple started out for the tomb. They were both running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. He stooped and looked in and saw the linen wrappings lying there, but he didn’t go in. Then Simon Peter arrived and went inside. He also noticed the linen wrappings lying there, while the cloth that had covered Jesus’ head was folded up and lying apart from the other wrappings. Then the disciple who had reached the tomb first also went in, and he saw and believed, for until then they still hadn’t understood the Scriptures that said Jesus must rise from the dead. Then they went home.
Mary was standing outside the tomb crying, and as she wept, she stooped and looked in. She 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. “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.”
She turned to leave and saw someone standing there. It was Jesus, but she didn’t recognize him. “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.”
“Mary!” Jesus said.
She turned to him and cried out, “Rabboni!” (which is Hebrew for “Teacher”).
“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.’”
Mary Magdalene found the disciples and told them, “I have seen the Lord!” Then she gave them his message.
That 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. As he spoke, he showed them the wounds in his hands and his side. They were filled with joy when they saw the Lord! Again he said, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you.” Then he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive anyone’s sins, they are forgiven. If you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”

One of the twelve disciples, Thomas (nicknamed the Twin), was not with the others when Jesus came. They told him, “We have seen the Lord!”
But he replied, “I won’t believe it unless I see the nail wounds in his hands, put my fingers into them, and place my hand into the wound in his side.”
Eight days later the disciples were together again, and this time Thomas was with them. The doors were locked; but suddenly, as before, Jesus was standing among them. “Peace be with you,” he said. Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and look at my hands. Put your hand into the wound in my side. Don’t be faithless any longer. Believe!”
“My Lord and my God!” Thomas exclaimed.
Then Jesus told him, “You believe because you have seen me. Blessed are those who believe without seeing me.”
The disciples saw Jesus do many other miraculous signs in addition to the ones recorded in this book. But these are written so that you may continue to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing in him you will have life by the power of his name.

1 Corinthians 15 (writen by Paul): Let me now remind you, dear brothers and sisters, of the Good News I preached to you before. . . . .It is this Good News that saves you if you continue to believe the message.
Christ died for our sins, just as the Scriptures said would happen. He was buried, and he was raised from the dead on the third day, just as the Scriptures said. He was seen by Peter and then by the Twelve. After that, he was seen by more than 500 of his followers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died (if you want to go check it out). Then he was seen by James and later by all the apostles. Last of all, as though I had been born at the wrong time, I also saw him. For I am the least of all the apostles, in fact, I’m not even worthy to be called an apostle after the way I persecuted God’s church.

I AZ feel like Paul.  I used to mock believers and read the bible to find fault to prove them wrong.  I did not come to belief until I was 42, when God did some miraculous and radical things in my life and got my attention.  Just like Paul sometimes I feel I am not worthy at all.  But Jesus has grace for even me!

12 comments:

  1. Happy Easter to you and your family AZ! May His Resurrection power be our strength until He returns!
    Maranatha, Lord Jesus!
    Chuck

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  2. Happy Easter, Mr. Jones. Feliz Semana Santa,
    Barleyman

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  3. Happy re-birthday, Jesus!

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  4. Az: I especially like the line "you believe because you see. Blessed are those who believe and do not see". To me that's the key to the whole passage.

    Thank you.

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  5. what are you talking about???

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  6. He is Risen!


    .H*P*D.

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  7. The very first thing that I realized in the moment after I was born again was that I actually had just met a living person. And that it was all true. Everything that I had ever been taught about the god of the bible. And that Jesus was indeed alive! That He had really ascended into heaven just like the bible said and He never died again! I met a living person that day on the railroad tracks into the little town of Istachatta. His soul breezed through mind like a living wind. In that moment all my sins were washed away. Sins that I had forgotten all about just fell off like old cloths! And I was made into a new person on that day. In that instant I received a brief glimpse of the afterlife. A taste of that living water. And I was never again to feel the fear of the sting of death. It had simply left me. “Oh death. Where is thy sting? Oh grave, where is thy victory?” Now they have no power because He has overcome both the world and the grave. "Behold, I make all things new". And He did in me. And He still does in others today. To those who first turn when they hear that knocking and then open the door of their hearts and let Him in. Jesus sayus in Revelation 3:20: “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. And if any man hear my voice and opens the door, I will come into him and fellowship with him, and he with Me.” I pray that you come again, Lord Jesus. And soon.

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  8. Thanks so much for sharing that.

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  9. Hey AZ - just curious if you have read Wild at Heart by John Eldridge?

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  10. None of us are worthy without his grace that abounds. Happy Easter!!

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