Christ is Risen! Easter Sunday Sermon

After the meditation today, please see below for a special Easter Message from our Christian Education Director, Ms. Tracy.

Hello Church Family, this is Pastor Phil. 

Christ is Risen! 

He is Risen indeed, alleluia! 

The Gospel Reading for this Easter Sunday is from Matthew 28:1-10.

Now after the Sabbath, toward the dawn of the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb. And behold, there was a great earthquake, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. And for fear of him the guards trembled and became like dead men. But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here, for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and behold, he is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him. See, I have told you.” So, they departed quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy and ran to tell his disciples. And behold, Jesus met them and said, “Greetings!” And they came up and took hold of his feet and worshiped him. Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me.”

I’m really hoping that I have the opportunity to see you on Easter morning and share in Holy Communion with you and your Church Family. Or, if you’re reading this on Easter, I pray our communion service went well and you’re having a blessed Easter. As I’m writing this, we’ve just finished preparing everything we’ll need for tomorrow’s drive-through communion service. I have to tell you, I never imagined I would be sharing Holy Communion with protective gear, gloves, and a face mask! I also never thought that I would be handing Holy Communion on a paper plate through your car window like being in a drive-through line. A paper plate is not what we’re used to. For so many of us we’re very used to receiving Holy Communion in a particular way, at the railing, in the sanctuary, on special vessels set aside for this purpose. This pandemic has stretched us by changing the ways we normally do things and forcing us to go outside of our comfort zones. 

But no matter how many of those things change and even if we are handing communion through a car window on a paper plate, it’s still Jesus there on that paper plate, delivering his same promises of forgiveness and eternal life to us through His Body and Blood. In the best possible way, this how Jesus has always delivered His promises to us, on a common, ordinary, paper plate. 

still Jesus, still delivering His promises to us on a common, ordinary, paper plate. 

When our savior Jesus came into our world on Christmas Day, He did not come and live in a palace or on an earthly throne. No, Jesus was born into this world to a working-class family, on some hay, with the animals. Still Jesus, delivering His promises to us on a common, ordinary, paper plate. 

When Jesus lived among us during his Earthly ministry, he ate what his disciples ate, common fish and crusty bread. He played games with the children and walked through the mud with His friends. Jesus cried over his loved one’s death and ate with sinners. He lived among us as one of us in every regard. Still Jesus, delivering His promises to us on a common, ordinary, paper plate. 

When He died, He died a death that no one would wish upon anyone–death on a cross. He was crucified like a common criminal among common criminals. But He died, like we all do, just like us. Still Jesus, delivering His promises to us on a common, ordinary, paper plate. 

But when He rose from the dead on Easter Morning, He did what no one has ever done before and no one has done since, or will do until the last day when God raises all of the dead from their graves and brings His people into the New Heaven and New Earth. Jesus rose bodily from the dead in His new and glorious, resurrected, body; a foretaste of what is to come for us. This single event on Easter Morning was not common and ordinary, but the most miraculous and amazing gift that has been given to all of humanity and is received in faith–life eternal with Jesus. 

Christ is Risen! He is Risen Indeed, Alleluia!

This wonderful gift of salvation, that gives meaning and purpose to life now and promise and hope of life eternal, is given through Jesus, delivering His promises to us on a common, ordinary, paper plate. His Words read and lived in the Holy Bible, a book both amazingly complex and simple. His promises given to young and old alike through simple water in Holy Baptism. His promises given through faith in, with, and under the bread and wine. Jesus not expecting us to rise to Him, but coming down to you and me, just as we are in all of our broken humanity and loving us. All of this, still Jesus, still delivering His promises to us on a common, ordinary, paper plate. 

So, maybe this is good, for all of us. It is a reminder that Jesus is not confined to our desires or to what we are used to. It is also a reminder that Jesus is not only about special places and special vessels. All of those things are good and are so often our way of honoring our Savior and practicing our faith. But Jesus is bigger than all of that and when the times come that life has to be different, even though we must change, Jesus doesn’t. Jesus still does what He has always been doing for us, delivering His promises to us on a common, ordinary, paper plate. 

Christ is Risen! 

He is Risen Indeed, Alleluia! 

Blessed Easter! 

A special Easter Message from our Christian Education Director, Ms. Tracy!

For these resources and more for home worship please check out the following.

My Easter Book

CPH.org/Home

Published by philipmcclelland.org

​I am a recovering burned out workaholic​ who forgot I couldn't change the world. From the ashes of that not only have I found a peace from God that I never knew but a focus on what matters, God, family and loving my neighbor as God has loved me. My burning out experiences really drive my writing and how much I want to share all of the good God has worked through the hurt I've experienced. Currently I serve a great little parish in Northern Ohio with my wonderful family and our furry farm of five dogs, four cats and the oddball handful of fish. You can find me at www.philipmcclelland.org.

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