On Good Friday we saw how Jesus was scourged, mocked, nailed to the cross where he dies after a few hours and hastily buried in a tomb. If that were the end of the story of Jesus that would be a bad story, a tragedy. But glory be to God, it is not. Death is not the end of the story of Jesus. There is one more chapter. This is the most important chapter because, as the saying goes, they who laugh last, laugh best. And in the last chapter of the story of Jesus we see him rise from the dead in all glory and majesty. He is vindicated. His enemies are shamed and confused. Jesus regains his eternal glory with the Father.
Resurrection is the greatest of the miracles, for it proves that Jesus is God. That is why
Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain; and your faith is in
vain” (I Cor 15: 14). “Jesus is Lord, he is risen” (Rom 10: 9), was the central
theme of the preaching of the apostles, because Jesus prophesied His
Resurrection as a sign of His divinity: “Tear down this temple and in
three days I will build it again” (Jn 2: 19). The founder of no other religion
has an empty tomb as Jesus has. Easter is the guarantee of our own
resurrection. Jesus assured Martha at the tomb of Lazarus: “I am the
resurrection and the life; whoever believes in me will live even though he
dies” (Jn 11: 25-26). 3) Easter is a feast which gives us hope and
encouragement in this world of pain, sorrows and tears. It reminds us
that life is worth living. It is our belief in the Real Presence of the
risen Jesus in our souls, in His Church, in the Blessed Sacrament and in Heaven
that gives meaning to our personal as well as our communal prayer, and gives strength
to fight against temptations and freedom from unnecessary worries and fears. St. Paul
No one is ever ready to encounter Easter until he or she has spent time in the dark place (like Jesus in the tomb) where hope cannot be seen. When we are going through very difficult times: through betrayal, unjust discrimination, lies, misrepresentations; and when the enemy seems to be winning the battle in our lives, Easter will come live to us. Easter is the last thing we are expecting. It's about more hope than we can handle. Easter promises us more than the stars in our darkness.
Easter tells us that the tomb is not a blind alley; it is a thoroughfare. It closes on the twilight; it opens on the dawn."
Jesus built a bridge to death with his Cross, so that men might pass from the land of death to the
. Mary Magdalene came to the
tomb while it was still dark "but the darkness did not remain. The dawn
broke. God's Son had risen. land of Life
The Resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead was never meant to be proved but experienced. As a matter of fact it cannot be proved, as none of us was there. We have to take the word of others who were. Those early witnesses were very passionate about their testimonies. Many were to be martyred in defense of their convictions. The most convincing evidence of the Resurrection of Christ is the transformation of the people who know Jesus and believed in Him after his death.
You do not say: resurrected Christ, appear to me and then I will believe. It is just the opposite. The resurrected Christ appeared only to those who did believe. He did not reveal himself to the Caiaphas and Pilates and Herods of the world.
The evidence of resurrection is overwhelming, and life makes no sense without it. Jesus Christ rose from the dead. The Twelve apostles were not going to give up their lives to simply perpetuate that which they know to be a hoax.
Islam religion believes everything about Jesus, including his miraculous virgin birth and his life full of miracles, except his death on the cross and his resurrection. Because it is the central point of Christian faith- Christ has died, Christ is risen and Christ will come again. Of course Muslims believe too that Christ will come again.
For most of us, believing that Jesus rose again from the dead becomes a little like believing the earth is round and that it orbits the sun. Once upon a time people didn't know that. They thought the earth was flat and that the sun orbited the earth. It caused quite a stir when this view had to be revised. But that was a long time ago and now we accept that picture of our solar system without much thought. Sure the world is round and we orbit the sun, but what does that have to do with anything? It doesn't change what you have to do at work tomorrow, does it?
Easter has somehow become part of the "routines" of this world. Easter is no longer shocking for us--it surely does not make us re-evaluate everything else we think we know. But, unless it changes everything in our life, it makes no sense. This is not some fact we can ponder just once every twelve months. This should change everything.... and on EVERY day. And we should witness this resurrection of Jesus among people who live as though God doesn’t exist or is dead for them.
Billy Graham responded to someone who shouted out "God is dead! God is dead!" Dr. Graham with tenderness replied, "That's strange because I just talked to Him in prayer a few minutes ago." Yes, the day you really believe in the resurrection is the day you change your life, change your universe.
The most important thing of Easter after acknowledging and believing in the resurrection is to share in the victory of resurrection. How can we do that ? Jesus said ‘unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood you can have no life in you’. If so, only by sharing in the Eucharist with believing faith can we share in the resurrection of Jesus. Jesus vanished from the physical sight of the disciples going to Emmaus when he broke the bread. He hid himself in the bread so that they could receive him spiritually. Let’s receive the resurrected Jesus in the Holy Eucharist and be empowered by him to witness his power everywhere we go today and tomorrow.