Summary: An Easter Sunday Sermon
Easter Sunday Sermon
"God’s Yes, to the World’s No"
24:1* ¶ But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they went to the tomb, taking the spices which they had prepared.
2 And they found the stone rolled away from the tomb,
3 but when they went in they did not find the body.
4* While they were perplexed about this, behold, two men stood by them in dazzling apparel;
5* and as they were frightened and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, “Why do you seek the living among the dead?
6* Remember how he told you, while he was still in Galilee,
7 that the Son of man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and on the third day rise.”
8 And they remembered his words,
9 and returning from the tomb they told all this to the eleven and to all the rest.
10* Now it was Mary Magdalene and Joanna and Mary the mother of James and the other women with them who told this to the apostles;
11* but these words seemed to them an idle tale, and they did not believe them.
Grace and Peace to you from our Lord and Saviour, Jesus who is the Christ. Amen
The following is a true Easter story by Roger Hawthorne
One of the first Easters of my ministerial career began with a blizzard. I was still a student pastor, and we had arranged to have an ordained pastor come to serve communion. There was a question if he would be able to make it through the storm. To add to the misery, shortly after breakfast, we received word of the death of a woman, one of the 12 brothers and sisters who were members of the congregation. Between the storm, the probable absence of the minister, and the death, I began to anticipate my wife and me having a worship service by ourselves. I stumbled from the parsonage to the church to be sure it would be warm in case anyone should come, then fought my way back for another cup of coffee. This was a blizzard--I could not see the road from the parsonage.
At church-time, I entered the back room, and there were all the teenagers who composed the choir. Eventually the ordained minister stumbled in and I marveled at his dedication to have fought that storm for more than fifty miles...The organist slipped out to begin her prelude while the choir, the minister and I consoled ourselves that perhaps at least a few people had come to the service. Then the organ volume lifted and we began to march in. there in the front row sat the husband and children of the deceased woman; they had driven 30 miles. Around them were aunts, uncles and cousins and they were so packed in the nave that some of them had to stand. Never before had there been so many people in a worship service there.
The organist moved into the first hymn,"Jesus Christ is risen today, alleluia!" In the front row, singing as loudly as any, with tears streaming down their faces,were the husband and children of the deceased woman.
The custom was they were used to coming forward to receive communion at the rail. We bent the rules so that I could help serve. The last man I reached with the wine was the new widower, whose children ranged from elementary to high school in age. My eyes must have been asking a question, for as he replaced the communion glass, he quietly took hold of my arm and whispered, "She has gone home, and we thought we should come home today too, especially today."