Summary: On this Easter Sunday morning, we stand amazed with the women who see the angel at the empty tomb. The angel announces to them, “He is risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee.”
You Are Not Alone! Matthew 28:1-10
1After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb. 2There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. 3His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. 4The guards were so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men. 5The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. 6He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. 7Then go quickly and tell his disciples: ‘He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him.’ Now I have told you.” 8So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his disciples. 9Suddenly Jesus met them. “Greetings,” he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him. 10Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me.”
A On this Easter Sunday morning, we stand amazed with the women who see the angel at the empty tomb. The angel announces to them, “He is risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee.”
1 Often we think of the death and resurrection of Jesus as a past event.
a “He was crucified, dead, and buried” is how the Creed says it.
aa And it goes on, The third day He arose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of God the Father Almighty;
from thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.
bb But between Jesus rising and his ascension, some wonderful things happen.
b He goes before them, just as he has always done, showing the way.
aa He goes before them to lead them, to guide them, to encourage them.
bb Just as God’s presence in the Exodus went before Israel in the cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night, Jesus goes before his disciples, too.
2 And on this Easter morning, Jesus still goes before us.
a Jesus goes before us in good times, Jesus goes before us in lean times.
b Jesus goes before us in sickness. Jesus goes before us in conflict.
c Jesus goes before us in doubt.
aa Jesus goes before us when friends fail us.
bb Jesus goes before us in sorrow and death.
d Jesus goes before us to heaven.
aa His death and resurrection breaks the hold of physical death on this world and ushers in the age of the inbreaking kingdom of God.
bb He goes to prepare a place for us, and if he goes, he will come again and receive us unto himself, that where he is we may be also.
B But Jesus does not just go before us, he invites us to meet him in Galilee.
1 Galilee, where it all started.
a Where Jesus called fishermen and tax collectors, where he taught beside the sea, and where he would meet his disciples again for breakfast on the beach.
b Galilee is a place of memories, but also a place of ministry.
c Galilee is where the world was given a glimpse of the kingdom of God, a new kingdom established by love, empowered by the Spirit, and including all who follow the King.
2 Galilee, where Jesus lives a life of love before those who come to love him; where he puts before the world God’s great plan to make all things new.
C The woman had watched the little girl carefully. When her husband got home, she told him the story, and badgered him until he got the step ladder and retrieved the note from the tree branch.
1 The woman opened the note and to her amazement, read what the little girl had written:
“Whoever finds this, I love you.”
2 And that’s what God has done.
a Sent Jesus, filled with God’s love, sent him ahead of every difficulty we might have in life, sent him into a world that did not receive him, turned on him, and killed him.
b Sent him to say, “Whoever finds this, I love you.”
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