Mk.16:2-4 – And very early on the first day of the week, they *came to the tomb when the sun had risen. They were saying to one another, “Who will roll away the stone from the entrance of the tomb for us?” And looking up, they *noticed that the stone had been rolled away; for it was extremely large.

The gospel of Mark is our earliest written record of the resurrection of Christ. The resurrection of Christ marked the beginning of a brand new world. Christ was alive from the dead, this would change everything. Today’s title, “He is Risen”, became the rallying cry for early Christianity. The resurrection marked the beginning of the Christian faith. Barclay makes some interesting observations that the resurrection introduces to our world. Check them out.

Jesus is not a figure in a book but a living presence. It is not enough to study the story of Jesus like the life of any other great historical figure. We may begin that way but we must end by meeting him. Jesus is not a memory but a presence. The dearest memory fades. The Greeks had a word to describe time meaning time which wipes all things out. Long since, time would have wiped out the memory of Jesus unless he had been a living presence forever with us. As
Jesus is not someone to discuss so much as someone to meet. The Christian life is not a matter of knowing about Jesus, but of knowing Jesus. There is all the difference in the world between knowing about a person and knowing a person. Most people know about the Queen or the President of the united States but not so many know them. The greatest scholar in the world who knows everything about Jesus is less than the humblest Christian who knows him.

Shortly after the iron curtain fell I was able to go to Moscow to preach at a newly formed church. It was at the October Theatre just down the road from the Kremlin. After preaching at the Sunday morning service I was approached by a reporter from their local newspaper asking me why Jesus was different from any of the others, like Mohammed or Buddha. The answer was simple, Christ rose from the dead. His tomb is empty. If Jesus wasn’t raised from the dead none of us would have ever heard about Him. The others that the reporter spoke of all died and are still in their graves. Christ is risen, He is risen indeed.

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