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Thursday, April 01, 2010

Easter sermon lessons, And So it Begins...

Greetings to you all in the name of our Lord, Jesus Christ!
Below you will find the lessons (biblical texts for the sermon in the 11:00 AM service this Sunday).  I invite you to not only read these passages and consider the questions below, but also to share in our worship services on Maundy Thursday and Good Friday (both at 7:00 PM).  By hearing the parts of the story in Luke's Gospel that lead up to the first Easter, we can better appreciate the significance of the events of that morning for our lives and for the world.
Isaiah 65:17-25
  • Does this passage encourage you or offer you hope?  Why (why not)?
  • Have you ever experienced anything like the images in verse 25? 
Luke 24:1-12
  • When you life gets hectic & crazy and your feel disoriented, how do you usually respond?  Do you stick to your practices and the things in life that are familiar, or do you just feel like collapsing (emotionally and spiritually, as well as physically)?
  • Why did the women in this text wait until the first day of the week to go to Jesus' tomb?  (see Luke 11:56)
  • Why did they go to Jesus' tomb?  What did they discover when they arrived?
  • Who are the two men who greeted them?  Does Luke's description of their clothes remind you of another story in Luke?  (think Luke 9:28-36, also where Jesus speaks with Moses & Elijah about the Exodus (Greek word is Exodon) that he will accomplish in Jerusalem. 
  • What did these men say to the women?  Whose words did they quote?  (Do you remember 9:51, when "Jesus set his face to go to Jerusalem"?  The act of setting one's face is to take on the role of prophet (see examples of this in Jeremiah).
  • What did the women do next? 
  • How did the male apostles respond to the news?  ("Idle tale" is a understated way of translating the Greek word Luke uses!  If you have other translations of the Bible, check to see if other translations of this word are different from the RSV, which is our per Bible) 
  • Where were the women when Jesus was crucified?  Where were the men (male apostles) when Jesus was crucified?
  • Do you think this (verse 12) is a strange way to end the first Easter Sunday?  Do you know people who think the Gospel of Jesus Christ is "an idle tale"?  Why do you think they believe that? 
  • What do you believe is the significance of Jesus' resurrection for your life?  ...for the world? 
In the coming weeks, we will continue to the story as Jesus is present with his followers, gathering and preparing his church for mission. 
Share the Joy:  Christ is Risen!

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