Thursday Morning: 07 Mar 2019 – John 20:11-23 ~ “I have seen the Lord!”

Thursday Morning

+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen

Opening (Collect for Purity)

Almighty God: to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hid; cleanse the thoughts of my heart through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, that I may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy name, through Christ my Lord. Amen.
__________

Morning Reading – John 20:11-23 (NLT)

Jesus Appears to Mary Magdalene

Mary was standing outside the tomb crying, and as she wept, she stooped and looked in. She saw two white-robed angels, one sitting at the head and the other at the foot of the place where the body of Jesus had been lying. “Dear woman, why are you crying?” the angels asked her.

“Because they have taken away my Lord,” she replied, “and I don’t know where they have put him.”

She turned to leave and saw someone standing there. It was Jesus, but she didn’t recognize him. “Dear woman, why are you crying?” Jesus asked her. “Who are you looking for?”

She thought he was the gardener. “Sir,” she said, “if you have taken him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will go and get him.”

“Mary!” Jesus said.

She turned to him and cried out, “Rabboni!” (which is Hebrew for “Teacher”).

“Don’t cling to me,” Jesus said, “for I haven’t yet ascended to the Father. But go find my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’”

Mary Magdalene found the disciples and told them, “I have seen the Lord!” Then she gave them his message.

Jesus Appears to His Disciples

That Sunday evening the disciples were meeting behind locked doors because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. Suddenly, Jesus was standing there among them! “Peace be with you,” he said. As he spoke, he showed them the wounds in his hands and his side. They were filled with joy when they saw the Lord! Again he said, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you.” Then he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive anyone’s sins, they are forgiven. If you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”
__________

Morning Reflection:

Every Sunday at our church, we profess our faith using the words of the Nicene Creed. In part, we say this about Jesus –

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God…. For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered death and was buried On the third day he rose again in accordance with the Scriptures; he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end….

The Nicene Creed is a theological formulation of Biblical truth, but how does that play out for believers in practical terms? Jesus’ encounter with Mary and the disciples provide us with examples –

Jesus turns our sorrow’s into joy-filled hope.

+ Crucified Jesus had compassion on Mary in her disappointment and misreading of her present circumstances. But his revealed presence with her turned her sorrow into joy.

+ Risen Jesus identified with Mary’s sorrow over the atrocities visited on Jesus by the evil one. But his risen presence demonstrated his victory over death, turning her sorrow into joy.

+ Ascended Jesus transformed Mary’s mourning over the loss of a loved one into a joy-filled messenger of eternal life. Jesus’ impending ascension guaranteed her place with him in eternity.

Jesus sends us out in the power of the Holy Spirit.

+ King Jesus transformed shuttered, fearful followers into Spirit-filled, messengers of the Kingdom of God – convicting the world of its sin, and of God’s righteousness, and of the coming judgment. (John 16:8)

Throughout today’s reading, God’s sovereignty is evident in Jesus’ resurrection appearances. No matter how disappointing, or evil, or hopeless the circumstances may appear, God is in control and Jesus is with us through it all.

Questions for consideration:

  • Can you think of time of disappointment or confusion in your life when you were comforted by knowing Jesus was with you? Please explain.
  • Do you believe that God is in control, even though our world is filled with evil people doing evil things. Please explain.
  • Do you see yourself as a citizen and ambassador of the Kingdom of God? How does the Holy Spirit assist you in this? Please explain.

__________

Morning Prayer:

Lord Jesus: Meet us in our sorrow and grief, our confusion and despair. Give us beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, and the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness, that we might bear witness to the reality of your resurrection. Empower us with your Spirit to proclaim the good news that, no matter how impossible our circumstances may appear, you are still in control, and in the end – you win. All for your glory. Amen.
__________

“I Have Seen the Lord” – John Finch – #VIGIL

Early in the morning as I journeyed to the tomb, There was no where else to go With eyes full of tears, When He spoke my name, we were standing face to face

I have seen the Lord, I have seen the Lord He’s No longer dead, He is risen! I have seen the Lord, I have seen the Lord He’s No longer dead, He is risen up again!

For many days I’ve followed, These eyes have seen Him die, and These eyes have seen Him rise

He cast away my sin by the saving grace of God It is Christ who changed my life

I have seen My eyes have seen The glory of our God
__________

Closing:

May the peace of the Lord Christ go with you, wherever He may send you. May He guide you through the wilderness, and protect you through the storm. May He bring you home rejoicing at the wonders He has shown you. May He bring you home rejoicing once again into our doors.

+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen



Categories: Life in Christ

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

3 replies

%d bloggers like this: