Holy Week 2022: Easter Sunday
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. And behold, there was a great earthquake, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. his appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. And for fear of him the guards trembled and became like dead men. But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here, for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and behold, he is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him. See, I have told you.” So they departed quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to tell his disciples. And behold, Jesus met them and said, “Greetings!” And they came up and took hold of his feet and worshiped him. Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me.”
Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. And when they saw him they worshiped him, but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
Matthew 28:1–10, 16-20
“He is not here, for he has risen, as he said!”
Two of Jesus’ followers go to visit Jesus’ tomb, and instead of what they were expecting, they see an angel who tells them these words. Imagine being at the tomb with these women. Just days ago, witnessing the man that you followed, learned from, and ate with being brutally murdered for no good reason. Imagine the sadness and confusion of Friday and Saturday. And now these two women go to visit his burial site, but “He is not here, for he has risen, as he said!”. The greatest news that has ever been given is found in these words. Words that confirmed and supported everything that Jesus had ever said. Words that proved he was the Son of God.
Notice that when these ladies see Jesus they fall down before him, take hold of his feet, and worship him. It wasn’t some mirage or hallucination; he was physically there with them! This is the only possible response to the truth of the resurrection. Worship and awe. What else could they do? While news of the resurrection may be something that we have heard since we were kids, it should always be something that leads us to this kind of worship.
As Jesus finally appears to his core disciples, he gives them some of the final words that we have recorded from him. He gives them their mission. He tells them what they are to give their lives on Earth to. This is not only the first disciples’ mission, but our mission as well! This may seem daunting, but take courage, Jesus is with you always, even to the end of the age.
Questions for Reflection
- How does the news of the resurrection impact you today?
- How can you cultivate more worship and awe for the risen Lord today?
- How is the news of the resurrection connected to the command to make disciples?