An Easter Message from Pastor Ron
Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who have fallen asleep.” (1 Corinthians 15:20)
We’re living through unprecedented times right now. Who would have thought just a few weeks ago that the joyful celebration of the Resurrection of Our Lord in church sanctuaries across the land would have to be cancelled and relegated to access on the internet? But none of this changes the fact: “Christ has been raised from the dead. . .” If nothing else, our current fears and upended world can serve to remind us that our confidence, our source of meaning and security, are not found in such things as the stock market, elected leaders, humanly devised structures. The angel asked the women who came to the tomb expecting to find the dead body of Jesus, “Why do you seek the living among the dead?” We cannot find the answers to the ultimate questions of life in a decaying and dying world. We can only find them in the living and eternal God, embodied in the crucified but risen Savior, Jesus Christ. Easter is not cancelled because we cannot come together in our places of worship. The startling, indisputable, life-giving truth remains, just as the angel announced centuries ago: “He is not here (and that was obvious). He has risen! (That was not expected). Remember what he said to you.” He had told them, and now it had happened. The women remembered and told the eleven and others. Later, that same evening, Jesus came to the apostles and convinced them that he was alive, sharing a meal with them. He walked with two men on the road to Emmaus and made them realize that as Messiah he had to suffer and die for the sins of the world, and then be raised to life again. Later he stood before Thomas, who held out for proof, but who then was moved to confess him as his Lord and his God. There were so many others, even five hundred people at once, and still later, the man Saul who became Paul, the apostle. There were all those men and women who were willing to go to the ends of the earth for him, and even joyfully into martyrdom because they knew he lives. Down through the ages, his people, connected to his death and resurrection in their baptism, have gathered together every Lord’s Day to rejoice in him as that same living Lord speaks in his life-giving Word and feeds them with the bread and the wine which are his very body and blood.
To all of that we can say, and even shout, “Amen” – “Yes! Yes! It is so!” We will not seek the living among the dead. We don’t have to live in the coffins of despair. We can live out in the fresh, clean air of hope and joy, ready to proclaim to the world, “Yes . . . it’s a fact . . . Christ has been raised from the dead. We’re next! Alleluia!”
Pastor Ron Flentgen