April 21, 2019

Sermon notes for 21st. April 2019, Easter Sunday

Sermon notes for 21st. April 2019, Easter Sunday

Lord of Light, shine upon these words the very truth of your being, that we
may read and be brought into deeper relationship with you. Amen.

Acts 10:34-43. Peter preaches that God shows no favouritism, but that anyone
who believes in Jesus, who did good and healed those oppressed by the devil,
was crucified, and was raised, receives life and forgiveness.

Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24. A song celebrating God’s mercy and strength, and
celebrating the restoration of God after struggle – foreshadowing “the stone
that the builders rejected” who “became the cornerstone”.

1 Corinthians 15:19-26. Christ is the one who died and came back to life in
order to bring all people to life. Finally, death itself is destroyed.

Luke 24:1-12. The women find the tomb empty and meet two angels who report
that Jesus is risen. They return and report the event to the disciples, who
are initially sceptical.

Rev Tania  writes:

Easter is celebrated the world over for the life that Jesus brings to us all.

This Easter the focus is, of course, on the resurrection, but the particular emphasis is on the liberation that Jesus brings. It is notable that the Acts reading is included, reminding us of that great moment of inclusion in the church’s history, where Peter proclaims, “But God has shown me that I should no longer call anyone impure or unclean.”

In addition, both Gospel readings (Luke and John) focus on the women’s role in the great resurrection drama, especially Mary Magdalene – another great moment of inclusion in the history of God’s people.

The message is clear – the resurrection is not just about finding life for after we die. It is a doorway to life now for all who are denied life through exclusion, oppression or judgement.

The challenge, then, is to embrace this life each day – to learn to become both those who are enlivened by God’s resurrection life, in the face of the violence, oppression, injustice and death of our world, and to become those who bring resurrection to those around us, through service, welcome, generosity, compassion, solidarity, dignity and love.

As long as the resurrection is only an anomaly in history, it has no real value for us. But, when it becomes a reality that infiltrates our lives and our beings, it transforms us into those whose every thought, word, action, value and attitude celebrates and releases life into our world.

Who are the people in your community who need to hear this invitation in your community this week? How can you be a community that leads others into a liberating encounter with the Risen Christ? May your Easter be a moment, not just of celebration, but of awakening and of mobilisation to find life, bring life, create life in every place of death in your world. He is risen! Alleluia!

Blessings of New Life this Easter,  Rev Tania