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“The angel said to the women, ‘Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; He has risen, just as He said. Come and see the place where He lay’” (Matthew 28:5-6, NIV).
As we prepare for Easter, it isn’t too difficult as modern day believers to put ourselves in the place of those first followers of Christ. Those were dark days. Before Jesus’ resurrection, His disciples viewed His arrest, crucifixion and death as events that crushed their hopes. They had believed Jesus was the Messiah, that He would conquer evil and issue in a new kingdom – the kingdom of God. They were confused. Where was the deliverance that Jesus had promised?
We also live in dark days. A girl from my son’s high school was murdered this week. The evil of the world invades our lives. After His resurrection, when Jesus ascended into heaven, He promised that He would return to earth and take us to be with Him in heaven. So, like the early disciples, we find ourselves in the days between – waiting for His promise to be fulfilled.
The angels’ words, “He has risen, just as He said” is good news indeed. Though there was doubt during the days of waiting, He did fulfill His promise. Praise God that we have the Holy Spirit indwelling in us, reminding us of His promise to return, strengthening us as we wait, providing us with hope, and filling us daily with the courage to face difficult times.
Although the time seems long and evil surrounds us, Jesus will return, just as He said.
Dear Jesus, thank you for your resurrection, by which we are saved. Thank you also for Your promise to return. Help us to cling to that hope. Amen.
Questions: Do you think about Jesus’ return? How does remembering that the promise of the resurrection was fulfilled help you believe Jesus will return?
About the Author Suzanne Benner