Read This Week: Luke 24

They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. In their fright, the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen! – Luke 24:2-6 NIV

One of the great thinkers and writers of the 20th Century, C.S. Lewis, once said this about the identity of Jesus, “A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic — on a level with the man who says he is a poached egg — or else He would be the Devil. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God: or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool, or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God.”

Lewis’ point about Jesus being the Savior of the world and not merely a good teacher is confirmed in the four words spoken by the angel to the women at the tomb: He is not here. This message was not of this world. It was transcendent, divine, and proven by the empty grave. The resurrection confirmed that Jesus had fulfilled his predictions that he would rise from the dead. It settled, once and for all, that he was indeed the Lord and God, and not just an enlightened sage. That was and is really good news.

It is good news because as Paul wrote in Romans 6, the resurrection allows us to not be here either. It empowers us to be new people in Christ. He wrote, “We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.” When we encounter and are changed by the risen savior, the old habits, thinking, and tendencies can’t be found anymore. The old ways and people are not here. We are new people with a new life.

When others encounter us, they are surprised and impacted because they don’t see the old. That person is gone. Changed forever by the One who conquered death and made all things new. The One who was alive when people went searching for a dead man.

So the next time the Enemy tries to accuse us with our past, we can say in the name of Jesus: “Not here!” The next time someone tries to shame us with our old actions and behaviors, we can proclaim in Christ: “Not here!” Because of the resurrection, we can wake up every day with faith and a confident hope to say to our former selves: “Not here!”

8 Comments

  1. almaschmidt on April 6, 2020 at 8:42 pm

    This week, in Luke 24, God gave me another song called “Risen”:

    He has risen, he has risen, he has risen!
    To set us free.

    He suffered on the cross forgiving our sins
    So we all could have eternal life with Him

    So let’s open our hearts to help each other
    Showing our kindness, hope, faith and most of all his love

    He has risen, he has risen, he has risen!
    To set us free. Amen.

    What it means to me is that He died so we could be forgiven for our sins, and to treat people with his kindness, hope, faith and especially his love for us.

    • Jason on April 9, 2020 at 11:18 am

      I love the progression and rhythm of your song. You take us from the cross to forgiveness to our salvation and then to how we are to live as children of God. The resurrection gives us life here and forever. Thank you for this on Holy Week.

  2. Jeri Centers on April 7, 2020 at 6:54 pm

    God gave me a word this week from Luke 24 verse 46. He said this and His words are true, “This was God’s plan from the beginning. Jesus won our salvation on the Cross. His resurrection from the dead gives us the blessed hope that we too will rise.”

    What that means to me is that we are not like those who have no hope. Our hope is in Jesus Christ the righteous.

    • Jason on April 9, 2020 at 11:30 am

      I really appreciate your words here, Jeri especially on the day before Good Friday. At no time do we experience or feel more hope in our lives than when we reflect on the cross and the resurrection. It really should be a daily meditation for every follower of Jesus.

      Your comment reminded me of the powerful verse in 1 Peter 1:3 – “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy, he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.”

  3. Heidi on April 11, 2020 at 9:28 am

    I just want to thank Father God for all He has done and continues to do! I want to thank Jesus for all He has done and continues to do! I’m so thankful for Jesus’ love, showing us the way, the truth, and giving His life the way He did so we could be with Him forever and ever.

    I’m so thankful to spend life with people who love God, who love talking about God. I’m so thankful I get to be God’s servant and I get to do life with Him. I’m thankful I get to be a child of God.

    Thank you, God, for everything! I hope one day you will say, “Thank you,” for being a good servant for me. I love you Father God, Jesus and Holy Spirit for all your LOVE!

    • Jason on April 13, 2020 at 12:51 pm

      Praise God for all He has done and will do!

  4. Kathy on April 15, 2020 at 12:27 pm

    In reading this chapter this Easter week, God was speaking to me the stone was rolled away so that others could see in and be persuaded that My son, Jesus Christ, was and is risen from the dead. Most of the time the problem with your belief is more in your heart, than in your head. Ask Me to open your eyes to see My son Jesus, as He is, as being with you all the time. If you want Jesus to dwell in you, you must be earnest with Him. By them all being surprised that Jesus had risen, shows that even His own followers had to be convinced of His resurrection. To know My son Jesus will cause you to be thrilled at the prospect of sharing Him with others. To know Jesus is to be in My will. Those who need a relationship with Me are called to turn in faith to Me. To come to know Me, is to change your direction in life. As you learn to appreciate My grace, your heart will be filled with joy, gratitude, and worship.

    What this said to me was My belief needs to be as much in my head as is in my heart. if I had been close to Jesus while he walked the earth, I probably would have had to be convinced like His followers were of the resurrection. However this week with it being Easter, I am reminded Jesus is always with me and I do believe He is coming back one day to take us home with Him.

    • Jason on April 17, 2020 at 11:23 am

      This is a wonderful commentary on this passage, Kathy. I tend to agree that most doubt is emotional, not factual. That matters of faith and belief are ones of the heart than the head. We tend to be driven by our experiences when it comes to God than we are the truth of what we know.

      However, as you said in your post, Jesus encourages us to engage Him and our faith with “all of our heart, soul, and mind.” That our emotions, intellect, and volition are all involved in our relationship with God through Christ.

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