Sunday, April 8, 2012

**Through The Death and Resurrection**

John 20:1-31 NIV  1 Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance. 2 So she came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put him!”

3 So Peter and the other disciple started for the tomb. 4 Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. 5 He bent over and looked in at the strips of linen lying there but did not go in. 6 Then Simon Peter came along behind him and went straight into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, 7 as well as the cloth that had been wrapped around Jesus’ head. The cloth was still lying in its place, separate from the linen. 8 Finally the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw and believed. 9 (They still did not understand from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead.) 10 Then the disciples went back to where they were staying.
Jesus Appears to Mary Magdalene
11 Now Mary stood outside the tomb crying. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb 12 and saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus’ body had been, one at the head and the other at the foot.
13 They asked her, “Woman, why are you crying?”
“They have taken my Lord away,” she said, “and I don’t know where they have put him.” 14 At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus.
15 He asked her, “Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?”
Thinking he was the gardener, she said, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.”
16 Jesus said to her, “Mary.”
She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means “Teacher”).
17 Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’”
18 Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: “I have seen the Lord!” And she told them that he had said these things to her.
Jesus Appears to His Disciples
19 On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jewish leaders, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” 20 After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord.
21 Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.” 22 And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive anyone’s sins, their sins are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”
Jesus Appears to Thomas
24 Now Thomas (also known as Didymus[a]), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. 25 So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord!”
But he said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”
26 A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” 27 Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”
28 Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!”
29 Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”
The Purpose of John’s Gospel
30 Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. 31 But these are written that you may believe[b] that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.

As Christians who believe in our Lord without ever having the opportunity to see and walk along side him, we sometimes question how those who did, did not believe, when our Savior was right there. But we forget that it is because of these words written by their hand, inspired by the Spirit, that gave us the source, the sword, to enforce our faith and teach us about our Savior and hear our loving Father.

As with our lives, when we walk God's path we know all things have a purpose, and they had to have doubts so that we would know that what we feel at times as humans, was also experienced by those who loved Him when He walked amongst them.

We were saved by His death and received Grace by believing that only through His death and resurrection is it even possible for us to get into Heaven.

Beyond, is our comprehension that a Father would send His son to the most gruesome of deaths, to be without sin, and feel every sin that would ever be committed by each and every human being that ever walked the earth is inconceivable. When we think of the hurt we have experienced through our own sins or sins committed by those we love against us, some, that actually alter our whole perspective, perception, and capabilities to carry-on; we find ourselves turning to different things to try and dull or forget our pain and remove the unbearable, even though we know, all we need do is surrender.

 Now let yourself feel that pain for a moment...... now multiply that by every one's pain you know about in your life circle, now add those we know through news, television, radio, families and people we cried over that we never met, yet, we mourned their children murdered, abducted, those who died in Tornado's, the Twin Towers, and earthquakes, it's overwhelming, and we try and push it away, it's to hard to bare.

Now imagine one sinless man, who in three long grueling hours, experienced and felt every single persons pain and sin torture His body, not one sin of the world was left out. As was written, they jammed down into His head  a crown of  thorns, hammered into His hands and feet nails of metal, stabbed in His side a spear, and what did He do? He looked towards the Heavens and said, " Father forgive them, for they know not what they do."

For all that pain and suffering what does He ask of us? To love others as He loves us, to love our neighbors, to do unto others as we would like done unto us, so little, and still, there are many who cannot or will not do this; also inconceivable. We have been saved by His grace because He fulfilled His purpose, as we give thanks today and rejoice with our family and friends and church members, may we each pray that led by the Spirit, we too, are able to fulfill our individual purpose so that we can be a light for our Father and bring those lost sheep back to the fold.

When rejoicing in the Resurrection today, may we remember the fulfillment of the scripture that made Eternal life possible. And this time, let us try and imagine what a Kingdom without sin will be like, what it will be like to finally be united with our Loving Father and Savior.

Father we give you thanks and praise, and we ask that the Holy Spirit fill us with the strength and wisdom we need to go out this week and continue on our quest to fulfill our individual purposes, and to remember that all things placed on our path are by Your design, give us the strength to accept what we may not understand, knowing that You are in control of all things, in Your son's Jesus name we pray these and all things Amen.

May the below poem from my upcoming book " Poems of the Eternal Heart A Daily Devotional  " bring you inspiration, and encouragement. Happy Easter love, hugs, and prayers Patricia xxx

    Risen to defeat death,
                              Enlightened so we can fulfill our purpose,
                           Jesus, the truth, the way, and the light,
                                Overwhelmed by true forgiveness,            
             Injected with the Holy Spirit,
                              Carried in the arms of our Loving Father,
                         Eternal life for those who believe..... 

Patricia VanDenburg©


  1. Hi Patricia,
    Have a blessed Resurrection Day! He is risen indeed!!

  2. Happy Resurrection Day Sweet Child of God may you continue to touch and be a prayer warriors for others and may your day be filled with love and Joy hugs xx

  3. Happy Easter! what an inspirational testimony to God! So touching and loving. God bless you! we loved it! thank you for such an amazing Easter Blessing! hugs, The Archer Family

  4. Easter has gone but my hope is renewed. :)

  5. Hi Dee Amen mine too... Hugs my sweet friend :)