Jesus’ resurrection gives us a glimpse of what is to come. Our tomb will be like his tomb. Our coffin will be like the young man in Nain’s coffin. That is to say, empty. Because Jesus has defeated death for us, we will live with him forever. Physical death will likely claim our life unless Jesus returns before that day. But that death is only temporary. Our eternal lives are safe and secure with the God who visited his people to save them.
We may not be able to explain the how’s of the Triune God, but we know the what’s and the why’s: God loves us. We are freed from the debt we owed to God. We are rescued from hell. We will be with our Triune God face-to-face in eternal life, just as he originally intended for us to be. Thank you, Father, Son, and Spirit, for these and so many other blessings!
Why do we observe Pentecost? Is it anything more than the birthday of the Christian church? As we see this account freshly again this morning, we’re left asking, What does this mean?
Paul recognized that the Christian ministry was all about adaption. That while the message of the Christian faith cannot be modified, changed, or compromised, he notes that we also can’t just ram-rod one, single-minded approach down the throat of anyone we come into contact with. We will want to adapt. But that begs the question here in 21st Century America, 21st Century Northern California, how do we become all things to all people?
If you have paid any attention to current events, you’ve seen a great deal of time spent and ink spilled on personal relationships. How should a man treat a woman? A woman a man? A husband his wife? A wife her husband? A parent their child? A child their parent? How should coworkers interact with each other? How should friends treat each other? How do members of a congregation interact with one another in a way that brings glory to God?
When you sit down with that friend or family member for that tough conversation, there may be no real fix to the problems. They just be things that now you have to deal with. But with God’s bad news? He provides the certain solution. The law that condemns us is overwhelmed by the gospel, the good news that Jesus has saved us.
So don’t rebel against what God says to you, painful as it might be. Listen to it. Listen to all of it. It might not be what you want to hear, but it is what you need to hear, because in that message of sin and forgiveness of that sin is comfort of your eternal life! Amen.
When God brought you to faith, when he gave you birth through his Word of truth, that was a life-changing event. It didn’t just change that moment; it changed the whole rest of your life. Enjoy that new life, that new status with God. Love that Word where he reminds you of all that he’s done for you every day. Love others as God has loved you. Live your life with the strength that God continues to give!
Jesus is home for now, and for eternity. Without Jesus, we have nothing to show for our lives. Without Jesus, we have hell as our eternal destination. Without Jesus, we may deceive ourselves into thinking things are fine when they’re really not. But what do we have with Jesus? With Jesus we receive the words of eternal life—the assurance of our complete forgiveness because Jesus lived and died for us. With Jesus we are with the Holy One of God—the Holy One who saves us, who have not been holy. With Jesus, we are home, truly home, eternally home.
In our Gospel this morning, we continue down the path of Jesus’ teaching the crowd in the events surrounding his feeding of the 5,000 men on the hillside. Jesus has been trying to get the people to lift their eyes heavenward, to see that there’s more to this life than what is immediately surrounding them. They shouldn’t be following him hoping for their next free lunch; they should be following them because he provides eternal life.