“Fear not. . .He is not here—for He is risen. . .”

Matthew 28:5a, 6a

     No sweeter words of Hope have ever been said or heard.

     “For He is risen.”

     Risen from the dead.  Risen from the depths of despair and depravity.  Risen from the shambles and stench of sin.  Risen from shattered dreams, broken promises and severed relationships.  Risen from. . .and risen above. . .and now “sitting at the right Hand of the Majesty on High” (Heb. 1:3c; 12:2c).
     Although Jesus had told them He would rise from the dead, like us, they didn’t believe.  Why else would the women be going to the tomb to anoint a dead body (Mk. 16:1)?  And, it’s clear their minds were bleary from grief, for they’d not thought how they’d move that large stone away from the tomb’s opening.
     But, that’s okay.

     An earthquake did it for them (Mt. 28:2a).  Hallelujah!!
     Yes, they weren’t expecting to see Jesus alive on that early Sunday morning when they traveled to the tomb.  But, were they in for a surprise!

     God has a way of sneaking up on us when we least expect it to prove Himself faithful and to turn our fear into faith.  Could it be He’s going to do that for/to you today?
     Think about it:

     Think of the implications of someone having been raised from the dead.  We can’t comprehend that in our “natural mind—for such things are spiritually discerned” (I Cor. 2:14).  Just like the mystery/miracle of the virgin birth, our minds. . .so accustomed to logic, deduction and induction, reasoning, rationalization, etc. . .can’t fathom someone getting up and walking out of a tomb after having been dead three days.
     But, Jesus did.

     That cold, lifeless Body suddenly began warming up.  That heart that had lain silent began to pump blood that had refused to clot.  Those lungs that had been unmoving and lying limply within their cavity began expanding, flooding that blood with oxygen and expelling the carbon dioxide as they’re designed to do.
     Suddenly, those limbs that had been lying quietly at His side began moving.  Slowly, He raised up on that hard, cold slab and began removing those shrouds of cloth that covered his face and body.  Quietly and deliberately, He folded them up and moved toward the massive stone covering the tomb’s opening.  And, suddenly, the stone began rolling away in its channel, causing the guarding soldiers outside to fall down in fright as dead men.  Hallelujah!!
     Dear Pilgrim, what difference would it make in your thinking, speaking and actions if you really believed “He is not here; He is risen”?  Ponder that thought today as you go about your daily activities.  And, don’t be surprised if you suddenly feel Him “brush up against you” and hear Him whisper, “Don’t fear.  I’m here.  Let’s walk through life together today.”

By Tom Smith Morning Manna Dated April 5, 2010

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