Listen to this obituary
There are four great things found in the neighborhood of Matt. 28:1-9: (1) The dead Jesus, the only truly good man that ever lived. (Matt. 27:57-60) (2) Jesus was risen from the dead. (Matt. 28:6) (3) Jesus has gone before us. (Matt. 28:7) (4) “When they saw Him, they worshipped Him, but some doubted.” (Matt. 28:17.)
Last week we looked at point (1) the dead Jesus. Concerning (2) let us think today about the meaning to us that Jesus was risen from the dead.
New life is so wonderful! This is why we love newborn babies and this is why when you’ve had a close call with death that life can take on new meaning. Spiritually speaking, according to Romans 6:4, this is the beauty of baptism – procuring new life in Christ.
I’ve toured Israel twice and my favorite place to be is probably the Temple Mount. But, the most life-changing thing I’ve seen is inscribed on the inside of the door to Jesus’ empty tomb:
I Cor. 15:49ff. reminds us that we’ll also live again.
(3) Jesus has gone before us. Jesus prayed in the Garden that he wanted to avoid death if there was any possible way. Death still comes one to a person. There was not even an escape available for the Son of God! Jesus didn’t get what he prayed for, and we may not either! Death or disasters come, anyway!
Somebody today may say: “But, my family member died!” and Jesus would say to you “All human beings will die. It is just a matter of when.”
Somebody else says, “I’m getting old and infirm and I don’t feel well much of the time any more.!” and Jesus would say to you, “And lo, I am with you always.”
When we are burdened with grief and problems we don’t need just to buckle down and grit our teeth and try harder! We need to learn what it means to be “Leaning On The Everlasting Arms” and “Not A Step Will I Take Without Jesus” and “As I travel through this pilgrim land, there is a Friend who walks with me!”
But, be warned that our singing and our preaching has always been easier than our living!
Carol Staudacher, in A Time To Grieve, page 229, reminds us that Abraham Lincoln said, “The best thing about the future is that it only comes one day at a time.”
“Through our grief, we often see the days that are ahead of us as something to dread, a solid block of future that we are going to have to “get through” some way or another. But our future is not in a solid block. It is not all in one chunk that we must push before us like weary work animals doing our grim duty. The future is a series of opportunities that come one day at a time.”
Here are two assignments for TODAY.
(1) Do something nice for yourself.
(2) Do something nice for somebody else.
Your end can become a new beginning. Make it so!