Sermons

Summary: A sermon for the 2nd Sunday of Easter

2nd Sunday of Easter

John 20:19-31

"Does Easter make A Difference?"

19 ¶ On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being shut where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, "Peace be with you."

20 When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord.

21 Jesus said to them again, "Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I send you."

22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit.

23 If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained."

24 Now Thomas, one of the twelve, called the Twin, was not with them when Jesus came.

25 So the other disciples told him, "We have seen the Lord." But he said to them, "Unless I see in his hands the print of the nails, and place my finger in the mark of the nails, and place my hand in his side, I will not believe."

26 ¶ Eight days later, his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. The doors were shut, but Jesus came and stood among them, and said, "Peace be with you."

27 Then he said to Thomas, "Put your finger here, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side; do not be faithless, but believing."

28 Thomas answered him, "My Lord and my God!"

29 Jesus said to him, "Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe."

30 Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book;

31 but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in his name.RSV

Grace and Peace to you from our Lord and Saviour, Jesus who is the risen Christ.

A pastor tells the following in the Augsburg Sermon Book for the year 1985: "I’ve never seen such a crowd in church, the woman exclaimed’. I didn’t know her, but apparently she was impressed by the number of people here for Easter worship. Then, as she was shaking my hand an-’ moving toward the front door, she added, "Do you suppose it will make any difference?"

I held on to her hand so she couldn’t get away, "What do you mean?" I said ’’Will what make a difference?"

"Easter," she shot back. "Will Easter make any difference for all these people, or will life tomorrow be the same as it was yesterday?"

That lady’s question is truly a profound question. "Will Easter make any difference for all these people, or will life tomorrow be the same as it was yesterday Will Easter make any difference in your life? Has this week been guy different for you because of the Easter event last Sunday?

Easter is truly a religious holiday. Oh, sure we have the Easter bunny and the tradition of buying new clothes, but in the final analysis Easter has not been commercialized, it is truly a religious event and has this religious event made any difference in your life?

One person who found that Easter does make a difference is the brother of Thomas, his twin.

Listen:

Dear Thomas,

After so many years, I am glad that I can finally write this letter to you. I was not sure that it would be possible. I am more skeptical than even you, and I was not sure how I would ever be able to believe in this Jesus of Nazareth you followed. He was crucified and that was the end of it as far as I was concerned. Yes, you had some hallucination I thought. Hanging around with those twelve, it was no wonder you’d begin to lose your mind. But it was clear that you at least were serious about it when you left for India. I pray that this letter will reach you so that you can share my joy. Your dedication to proclaiming Jesus was always inspiring to me, even if I thought it was wrong-headed and unbelievable.

But let me tell you what happened to me.

As I’d written you, we had to leave Galilee to live in Jerusalem. There was no more living for us there, so we left to find a better circumstance in the city. Here in Jerusalem a tailor can make more money, but expenses are greater. Whether we will come out ahead, I am not yet sure. We found some rooms to rent, Naomi and me and the children. Of course, we were very nervous, even frightened, about leaving our homes and families to live in this crowded, busy place. We did have contact with cousin Micah, but he lived some distance away from our new home in the city.

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