A United Methodist Pastor's Theological Reflections

"But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory (nikos) through our Lord Jesus Christ." - I Corinthians 15:57

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Lectionary Bible Commentary for Sunday, March 31 (Easter Sunday)

Sermon (March 31 – Easter Sunday) – “Livn’ My Dream”

Acts 10:34-43

-       How do you tell the story of Jesus and the new life that he offers?
-       This scripture serves as a brief “elevator” speech on the Christian faith. It’s concise and to the point.
-       The story centers Jesus in the covenantal language of the Old Testament and puts him front and center as the fulfillment of God’s covenant to rescue and redeem the world from sin and death.
-       Notice that the Holy Spirit came upon the people even though Peter shared this very brief story about Jesus! The sharing of the good news is powerful!
-       The elements of Peter’s story about Jesus: 1) It locates Jesus in the story of Israel and God’s covenant with them. 2) John the Baptist announced the coming of the kingdom of God. 3) Jesus is the fulfillment of the covenant through his death and resurrection. 4) Through Jesus, we receive forgiveness.
-       Peter’s message is a message to a non-Jewish audience.
-       Sharing our faith is about sharing what God has done through Jesus Christ.

Luke 24:1-12

-       Jesus had spoken about his own resurrection a number of times but nobody caught on to what he had been saying.
-       In Jesus’ day, the thought was that all of God’s people would be resurrected at the end of the age. Nobody thought that this could happen to someone in the middle of history.
-       The mood of Easter morning is surprise, astonishment, fear, and confusion. Which of these do you experience on Easter morning?
-       The story of Easter is a story of how God has surprised us with the incredible news of the resurrection of Jesus.  How can we be open to the wonder of this incredible event?

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