One of the major changes that took place in the early stages of the church, which set it apart from Judaism was the move from Saturday to Sunday as a day dedicated to God. The seventh day, Saturday, was the day ordained by God in the law of Moses as a day of rest. The post-exilic Israelites held their synagogue services on Saturday, which Jesus and all his disciples did as well.
Why did the church move from Saturday to Sunday? Because of what happened one Sunday morning which changed to course of history and set into motion the advance of God’s Kingdom on earth. The early church began observing their services on Sunday because it was a celebration of Jesus’ resurrection from the dead.
Think of it – every Sunday when the church gathers all over the world, we are celebrating Easter!
This Sunday as we continue our study of Luke, we’ll be reading Luke 24:1-12. We’ll be considering Jesus’ resurrection – more specifically, the empty tomb, which stands as evidence of something unseen.
It’s fascinating that in each of the gospel accounts, nobody is a witness to the resurrection itself – only the events and evidences post resurrection.
In our account this Sunday, we’ll read about the women coming to the tomb to prepare what they assumed would be a corpse for decomposition. When they get to the tomb, it’s empty. Each of the gospel accounts of this event starts this way. What does that empty tomb speak to you about Jesus and the nature of our mission with him?
Two glowy dudes show up and remind the women that this was something Jesus told everyone would happen, but nobody understood what he was saying, and therefore had no anticipation of this occurring. The disciples didn’t understand what Jesus was saying – but how did that affect God’s plans? Does God ask us to understand what he’s up to? What does God look for from us?
When we finally get to the men disciples (v11), their response to the women’s report is less than heroic or faith-filled. Can you really blame them though? Peter decides to investigate for himself – and I believe he takes the first step that countless believers have followed behind him. How difficult is it for you to allow for all the possibilities of God’s involvement in your life or in this world? Following Peter’s example, how can we become more open to God’s possibilities?
I’m looking forward to digging in to this explosively hopeful passage with you this Sunday – I hope you can join us!