Surprise, Jesus is Alive

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April 1, 2018 Easter Sunday – Jesus is Alive

There’s tremendous irony in the coming of Easter on April Fools Day.

      Here’s why: After Jesus’ death, his followers scattered and shrank away into the dark shadows of Jerusalem. Only a few women had the courage to approach his tomb, not to see if he had risen but to anoint his body. In everyone’s eyes, Rome, as always, had triumphed and the religious authorities had rid themselves of one more false messiah.

      Jesus was dead. Period. That was the universal perception of what had happened. So much so that when the women ran to tell Peter and the disciples that Jesus was alive, the disciples thought they were hysterical; spreading an idle tale. They rebuked the women using the Greek word for nonsense. You might say their response was “This is an April Fools joke, right?”

      Despite six predictions in the Gospel of Luke that Jesus would rise from the dead, it seems that not a single disciple – including the women who were initially shocked and disbelieving at the sight of the empty tomb – believed that Jesus would actually rise from the grave. It was the greatest April Fool’s prank of all time and it fooled everyone. No one thought it could be true. Yet it was. Eventually the Apostle Paul reports that there were 500 witnesses to the resurrected Christ and the foolishness of the cross and resurrection became the centerpiece of his preaching.

      Happy April Fool’s Day and Happy Easter! May we all believe in the foolishness of the world’s wisdom, and in the wisdom of Christ’s foolishness.

                                                       In Christ’s Grace and Peace,

                                                                               Pastor Bob

I Cor. 15:1-11; 1:18-25