Summary: The open tomb proclaims that death is defeated.
Easter SONrise Service
“The Tomb Speaks of Life”
CHRIST IS RISEN! He is risen as He said. This is the day that the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it!
Beloved brothers and sisters in Christ–grace, mercy and peace be unto you, fro God our Father, and our victorious and risen Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.
Isn’t it a glorious Easter morning! Isn’t it wonderful to be here! To see the vacant cross! To look at an empty tomb! To celebrate in life, and life everlasting!
As I tried to get a handle on the excitement of this day, I thought again of Mary, the mother of Jesus. I tried to imagine what it was like for her on the first Easter morning.
She had witnessed her Son’s death. She had gone to her new home with the apostle John. Suddenly, on the third day, “Mary! Mary! Mary!” She heard the shouts and they were coming closer... growing louder.
Rushing to the door she opened it quickly. I imagine one of the women, or both, who had gone with her to the cross standing breathless at the door–embracing Mary, arms wrapped around her tightly, then pushing Mary away at arms length. Eyes lock together by beams of joy, a voice cracks a bit and breaks the silence, “THE TOMB IS EMPTY MARY! He is risen just as He had said. I thought that someone had taken the body but there are reports of angels being seen.”
“Yes!” breaks in Mary Magdalan, “It’s all true! Mary, I saw Him... I saw Him! I can’t get a hold of my senses, Mary, it seems to wonderful to be true, like a dream! But it IS true! HE IS RISEN! Mary.... He is risen!”
Are you with me? Are you imagining what Mary must have felt! The power and excitement of Easter is spectacular! Now the dark hour of death is gone–defeated–and eternity has been given to us as a love gift from God.
This news is electrifying! Energizing! It catapults us into life... not in steps, but in leaps! CHRIST IS RISEN! He is risen indeed!
Slain is the dark hour! The great giant death has been killed–shot by the sling of an ancient shepherd’s son and Lord. The great, great giant is falling. His shadow covers the earth, but he is falling. He is dead!
Christ is Victor! Death is vanquished! Praise God from whom all blessings flow! Christ is risen... death is dead! The tomb is broken by light! Liberty is proclaimed to the captives! The Morning Star lifts the horizon! Night is passing! Our cup overflows!
We shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever!
O death were is thy victory? O death where is thy sting?
The deceit has been exposed, and the thorn has lost its pierce. Every rose from the heart of faith blossoms beyond the prickling adversities of this world. Chris is Victor! Death is vanquished! Praise God from whom all mercies flow!
The tomb is not mute. It speaks. It proclaims! Like the vacant cross it speaks. It opens its mouth. Its seal of silence is broken.
The eternal Father sent forth a holy light and it cracked open the door... overwhelmed the darkness... reached into hell to join the conquering Christ... And lifted Jesus... lifted Jesus into life and light and victory!