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Summary: A Sunday School teacher asked the class: "What were the first words Jesus said after leaving the tomb." A little girl lifted her hands in the air and responded; "Ta Da"! O' Beloved; Ta Da Jesus Christ has Risen indeed.

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Let us pray: O' Heavenly Father it is through your only begotten Son Jesus that we have the gift of eternal life. For He overcame death ... and opened to us the gate of everlasting life:

Grant that we, ... who this day ... celebrate with joy our Lord's resurrection, ... may be raised from the clutches of death and sin ...by your life giving Spirit;

And Father it is through Jesus our Savior and Lord ... that we pray.

A Sunday School teacher had just finished telling her third graders about how Jesus was crucified and placed in a tomb ...... with a great stone sealing the opening.

Then, ...... wanting to share the excitement of the resurrection, she asked: ....... "And what do you think were Jesus' first words when He came out of that tomb?"

A little girl in the back of the room shot her arm into the air and leaped to her feet and shouted excitedly ....... "I know, I know!"

"Good" said the teacher, "Tell us, Bethany what did he say."

Extending her arms high into the air she said: "TA-DA!" (Pause)

I truly enjoy that story... It puts a smile on my face and it is so appropriate ... for this Day.

Beloved ... The resurrection of Jesus Christ was indeed for the world ...... a "TA-DA".

The Resurrection ... has touched the lives of believers throughout the ages.

Yes, ...... "TA DA" ... Christ is Risen (Pause)

On Easter day Christ came ... out of the tomb ...... and into our lives ...... with power ... and victory.

Easter is a great celebration of the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. (Pause)

It is Easter.

A time when Alleluias fill the air:

The Anglican Church ...... since its inception ... has a wonderful acclimation .... that is proclaimed ...... beginning with this day ... Easter Sunday.

The Priest Proclaims: (Slow) "Alleluia Christ is risen"

And the people reply: (Hand gesture) ... "The Lord is risen, indeed Alleluia"

Our Gospel text begins on that first Easter morning.

Mary Magdalene and the other Mary make their way to the tomb of Jesus.

What do they expect to find?

I suppose they expect .... what you and I would expect ... if we went to visit the grave of a friend.

That.... the grave ... the tomb ... would look like most graves and tombs.

It would be .... un-disturbed.

You certainly would not expect your friend or love one .... to be gone!

And yet that is exactly what the two Mary's encounter!

This event is highly dramatic in Matthew's telling.

There is a great earthquake, .... which shakes not only their perspective .... but literally everything else .... in the surrounding area.

And then an angel of the Lord descends from heaven before their very eyes, .... and remarkably ... this single angel .... rolls back the stone of the grave .... and then sits on it.

There the angel looks at them .... dazzling ... as lightning!

Can you imagine how shocking it would be for these two women .... to witness ......all of this?

It is incomprehensible.

The guard's behavior .... tells us how disarming it was.

They panic ... to the point .... that they pass out......they become as dead.

But the women, ...... the women keep it together ... perhaps that is why Jesus appears first .... to women.


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