Summary: The 1) COMPASSION 2) TERROR 3) JOY 4) WORSHIP & 5)HOPE of the Resurrection

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This week has seen some tremendous devastation. At least 1,500 have been injured and tens of thousands left homeless in Italy’s deadliest quake in nearly 30 years. One official said between 10,000 and 15,000 buildings were damaged by the earthquake.

By Friday morning the death toll from the earthquake stood at 287. The quake struck at 3:32 a.m. local time and was a magnitude 6.3, according to the U.S. Geological Survey although Italy’s National Institute of Geophysics recorded it at 5.8. The government says that reconstruction costs will rise to 1.2 billion euros ($1.6 billion) and entire towns will have to be rebuilt.

About 2000 years ago another earthquake changed the world in the Middle East. After an illegal trial and execution, Jesus Christ, God in the flesh, rose back to life. He did it as was foretold by Old Covenant prophets, as He Himself said and as evidenced by physical and eyewitnesses.

Recorded in the Gospel of Matthew, the resurrection of Jesus Christ, is the central event of God’s redemptive history. The resurrection is the cornerstone of the Christian faith, and everything that we are and have and hope to be is predicated on its reality. There would be no Christianity if there were no resurrection.

Although they reveal the same divine truths in perfect harmony with one another, each of the gospel writers presents the resurrection from a distinctive perspective. Matthew does not approach the resurrection from a scholarly, historical, analytical, or evidential perspective but focuses rather on the emotional reaction of a group of women who loved Jesus deeply. Their testimony changed history forever.

In it we see:


Matthew 28:1 [28:1]Now after the Sabbath, toward the dawn of the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb. (ESV)

As a commemoration of God’s resting after creation, the Sabbath was to be a day of rest and worship for Israel (Ex. 20:8–11). After the crucifixion of Jesus, the women went home and kept the Sabbath as the law required, from sundown Friday to sundown Saturday.

When the women arrived at toward the dawn/daybreak on Sunday, the third day, Jesus had already risen. John states specifically that when the women came “it was still dark” (John 20:1) (Barton, Bruce B.: Matthew. Wheaton, Ill. : Tyndale House Publishers, 1996 (Life Application Bible Commentary), S. 570).

The first day of the week also translates an interesting Greek phrase, which literally means, “day one with reference to the Sabbath.”

The Jews did not have names for days of the week, such as Monday, Tuesday, and so on, but simply numbered them in relation to the Sabbath. Sabbath means “seventh,” and, although it was at the end of the week, because it was the central and holy day, all other days were reckoned by it-as the first, second, third, and so forth, day after the Sabbath.

• Jesus had repeatedly predicted the third day would be the day of His resurrection (see Matt. 16:21; 17:23; 27:64; Mark 10:34; Luke 18:33).

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