Christ is Risen
Death is real. We humans are not immortal. Jesus certainly died. Roman soldiers were efficient at executions. He was buried, the tomb sealed and a guard set. There were eye-witnesses of this.
There were no eye-witnesses of Jesus' resurrection. By that I mean no-one saw him rise from the dead. So why didn't the Christian story end with the crucifxion? Jesus' disciples, who ran away in fear of their lives when Jesus was arrested, gave just one answer. They proclaimed that 3 days after Jesus was crucified, died and buried, God raised him to life.
They preached it because they were witnesses, not that they saw it happen, but they saw an empty tomb, grave-clothes, a stone rolled aside. And they met Jesus, in a garden, in a locked room, on the road, on a beach. They recognised him - not always immediately. He appeared to them in his resurrection body.
I can't explain how that happened. This is a mystery, a miracle, something only God can do - to bring new life from death. It changed everything. Jesus' resurrection is real, as real as his death. Christ's resurrection guarantees that nothing, however dreadful can separate us from God's love. I believe this.
Alleluia! Christ is risen! He is risen indeed! Alleluia! (English)
Christus ist auferstanden! Er ist wahrhaftig auferstanden! (German)
Christ est ressuscité! Il est vraiment ressuscité! (French)
Christus resurrexit! Resurrexit vere! (Latin)
Tha Crìosd air èiridh! Gu dearbh, tha e air èiridh! (Scottish Gaelic)
Atgyfododd Crist! Yn wir atgyfododd! (Welsh)
Χριστός ἀνέστη! Ἀληθῶς ἀνέστη! (Khristós Anésti! Alithós Anésti!) (Greek)
Image: Image by Donut_Diva at Flickr.com