Easter Sunday: Psalm 22: A Song of Praise for God's Deliverance
As we come to Easter Sunday we are picking up where we left off last week in Psalm 22. The first half of Psalm 22 is focused on the sufferings of Jesus on the cross. As we began the Passion Week it was helpful for us to consider the cross and the suffering that Jesus endured on our behalf.
But while the first half of Psalm 22 is about suffering, the second half is about how we should respond once deliverance has come. Specifically, how should we respond to the deliverance of Jesus from suffering (His resurrection) and what does the future look like because He was delivered from His suffering?
Reading the Scriptures Together
After celebrating the resurrection together on Sunday this week’s reading will help us keep our minds focused on Jesus’s victory over death. During the course of the week we will read each of the Gospel accounts of the resurrection. The schedule also includes two readings from the letters of Paul that will help us think about the significance of the resurrection and how it should impact our lives and faith.
Note: As you read the Gospel accounts you may notice that they are not all exactly the same. Some have suggested that in places they contradict one another. While I won’t take time to address the details here (there are many good resources available), we must remember that God used four different eyewitnesses to record this story and each has written from his own perspective – we should be thankful for these varied looks into the event. Also, when all of the accounts are laid side by side, none of the differences present an irreconcilable contradiction.
Monday: Matthew 28
One thing that makes Matthew’s account unique is that he includes details about the actual resurrection including an earthquake and the angel that rolled the stone away. He also indicates a special moment of worship when the disciples first see Jesus – they grab his feet (meaning the have fallen to the ground) and worship Him.
Tuesday: 1 Corinthians 15
Outside of the Gospel accounts, this is our most valuable resource on the resurrection. Paul gives us proof of the resurrection of Jesus, reminds us of why the resurrection is essential to our faith and how the resurrection of Jesus guarantees the resurrection of all who believe in Him.
Wednesday: Mark 16
John MacArthur – Of the four gospels, Mark’s account is the most succinct, in keeping with the fast-paced style of his history. Though brief, its demonstration of the reality of Jesus’ resurrection is more than sufficient. Mark’s account yields three points of evidence to make his case: the testimony of the empty tomb, the testimony of the angels, and the testimony of the eyewitnesses.
Thursday: Romans 6
In Romans 6 Paul helps us remember how the resurrection of Christ mirrors our own spiritual resurrection. While Christ died a physical death, when we are saved we die to our sin. Just as Christ rose from the dead we rise to new life in Him (Baptism is a picture of this spiritual reality). This means that we are no longer slaves to our sin (we died to sin) and we can now live in obedience to Christ.
Friday: Luke 24
One thing that is unique to Luke is the extended story of Jesus’s appearance to two men on the road to Emmaus on the day of His resurrection. This is an incredible story that reminds of us of how the Old Testament points toward Jesus and how He is the fulfillment of the promises made to the people of God.
Saturday: John 20
While John’s account of the resurrection itself and the events of that Sunday morning are similar to the other Gospels, John provides the most details about Jesus’s interactions with His disciples following His resurrection (continuing through chapter 21) and John’s style of writing offers a very personal perspective.
Preparing for Sunday:
This coming Sunday we will be considering Psalm 23. As you have time during the week begin reading and meditating on this Psalm in preparation for our time in the Word together.