First Day – April 2018

This April 1 is different than any I remember … It is Easter – and, of course – “April Fools’ Day.” In that district superintendents are “not needed” on Easter, I have not preached an Easter morning message since coming to that role. (However, as many of you know, since Easter is a season on the Christian calendar, I preach several “Easter” messages this time of the year.)

Nonetheless, I have not been able to resist thinking about if I were preaching on the day on which these two occasions met. The reality is everyone in Jerusalem was fooled that Easter morning. The women were fooled by the empty tomb to the point they were “bewildered and afraid” (Mark 16:8). Even though Jesus had spoken to his disciples of his death and Resurrection, still they were not expecting such as evidenced by hiding behind locked doors instead of “hanging out” at the tomb, waiting on Him to come to life

On that evening the Emmaus Road travelers were fooled by asking their unknown companion if he “was the only one in Jerusalem who had not heard what had happened” (Luke 24:18) regarding the Crucifixion of Jesus of Nazareth. They were all fooled. And they were not the last. The testimonies of men such as Saul of Tarsus (Paul), Augustine, C.S. Lewis, Malcolm Muggeridge, Josh McDowell, Lee Strobel and Chuck Colson are representative of millions more who had “written off” or dismissed Jesus of Nazareth, only to find Him “alive and well” in His presence and transforming effects.

They won’t be the last, either. In fact “one day every knee will bow, and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father.” Imagine! “The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God’ ” (Psalm 14:1). One day even the “fools” will know differently.

So we go on declaring, even in this day, the life, death, Resurrection and return of Jesus Christ. To many the “preaching of the cross is foolishness, but to those who are being saved it is the power of God” (1 Corinthians 1:18).

To borrow from Dallas Holm,
“Go ahead, and say, I’m dead and gone,
But you will see that you were wrong
‘Cause I’ll rise again.
Ain’t no power on earth can hold me down.”

And that’s the truth on this April Fools’ Day

dgk