"He is Risen!"
1 ¶ In the end of the sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre.
2 And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it.
3 His countenance was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow:
4 And for fear of him the keepers did shake, and became as dead men.
5 And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified.
6 He is not here: for he is risen, as he said.
The words of Matthew, Chapter 28, proclaim the good news to Mary Magdaline and Mary, the mother of James, on that first Easter morning. Thus, the promise of the Christmas birth is fulfilled, and Jesus, the Son of God, completed His earthly mission among us, fulfilling the Promise God gave in Isiah.
It's not the greatest of Easter mornings. Many of us hold vigil over another innocent condemned to a slow, painful death. Tens of thousands of Americans are away from home, in a hostile land, trying to bring earthly peace, standing guard against those that would kill and maim for the sole purpose of gaining earthly power. Millions around the world are still homeless after a devastating natural disaster. Tens of millions are lonely, in pain, hungry, cold, and miserable. Yet the promise of this day makes all of that trivial. He is Risen!
With His resurection, the power of death was broken. No longer were men condemned to be born, live a little while, and die, to be forgotten. Those who believe will be resurected with him, and made whole again. Death is not the end, but a step beyond. There is no longer any reason to fear death, but to accept that it is a part of living, in Christ. In Christ, we shall all be made new.
It's not the greatest of Easter mornings, but any celebration of Christ's Resurection is a good morning. In the words of the Psalmist, "let us rejoice and be glad in Him." He is Risen!