Acts 1:14a; 22-32
The Testimony of the ancients
- Luke tells of King David’s testimony to the resurrection of Jesus was based on a promise made to him by God that one of his descendants would sit on the throne. In Romans 1:1-3, we see that Jesus is of the House of David according to the flesh. Jesus Christ is the son of Abraham and also the son of David, and when he returns he will reign on the throne of his father David, as the angel Gabriel already had
- Proclaimed to his mother Mary even before he was conceived (Luke 1:31-33).
- He writes that God proved who Jesus was through the miracles, wonders, and signs that God performed through him.
Today, we read the Easter story and believe in the resurrection for several reasons:
- The tomb where Jesus lay was empty. The grave clothes lay on a stone wrapped neatly and He was not there.
- We choose to believe the story of the women who went to the grave and went back to tell the other disciples that the body was gone.
- And through the brokenness of one of the women’s hearts, Jesus came to her. So, it was true. He rose up from the grave and now He lives.
The Testimony of tears
While we have the testimonies of the people, we also have the testimony of tears. It is not that the first disciples on the scene, Peter and the other disciple whom Jesus loved” did not believe. They believed and returned home. However, Mary Magdalene stood outside the tomb and cried.
Her tears indicated a deep relationship with Jesus. It was one of caring and deep concern about his well-being, even in death. “Where did you carry the body?” Jewish custom would have permitted her to take the body to the family burial place. Remember he was buried in a borrowed tomb of a rich man. So her concern is duly noted. She did not want the body thrown into a bone pit or an open grave where birds of prey and other animals could have desecrated it.
It is recorded that a man appeared and was concerned about her and questioned her distress. Her answer is a simple one not even calling Jesus by name. She thought it was the gardener but when he calls her by name, something caused her to recognize him and she called him “Teacher” in Aramaic. He has identified her and acknowledged her. In doing so, he reveals Himself as the resurrected Jesus.
Ladies, there is power in crying. Our tears are powerful. Ask any man what disarms him and most will tell you it is when a woman starts to cry. Can it be then, why we encourage our boys not to cry; because we have an innate knowledge of the power of crying? Just food for thought.
We are called to live out our faith. Jesus started it and the church is called on to finish the job here on earth. When Jesus returned, he used the 40 days after he was raised from the dead to teach his disciples about the kingdom of God. Now we are expected to do even greater works as written in John 14:12-14. I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these because I go to my Father.
Led by the very Spirit of God, the church has been empowered to operate in that power to be witnesses through the earth. Witness to what, Pastor? We are called to be witnesses to the resurrection of Jesus Christ. If you believe it, someone out there needs to know about the crucifixion and resurrection. Their eternal life depends on it.
Is this really necessary, Pastor? Yes, it is. Even “doubting Thomas” asked to feel the imprints of the nails because he had to be sure. In that time, it was significant to the faith. Why should it not be today? The resurrected Christ battled the sin problem on the Cross and won. Someone needs to know that Jesus died so that the sins of the world could be forgiven.
I must warn you that in the Lord’s Prayer, we are warned that we are forgiven as we forgive those who have trespassed against us. We are walking on shaky ground when we hold on to the hideous mess that hurt us in the past. Forgive the person. The burden drags you down; they have gone on about their wicked business. Let them go so you can be free. Too many blessings are on this side of the track where Jesus abides; where the Spirit is.
If you have accepted Christ, accept the work of His Spirit in you to empower you to be a true witness of His love and forgiveness. Just think how God felt as He saw his Son crucified on that cross. It is God’s Spirit that works in and through you to be the witness He needs in this world.
‘Be a witness to the resurrection if you know for yourself that Jesus lives and is the Son of the one and only true and living God.’ Amen.