Pause

Even when we expect it, even when we know it is coming, Easter arrives all wrapped up in surprise. We are amazed at this great thing God has done. Life springs from the darkest place we can imagine.

Death is sent packing.

We are given again the gift of wonder, and we stand amazed in the presence of our risen Lord.

Open wide now your heart. Open your heart to the Light — the Lord of Life!

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Listen

O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his steadfast love endures forever! Let Israel say, “His steadfast love endures forever....” The Lord is my strength and my might; he has become my salvation. There are glad songs of victory in the tents of the righteous: “The right hand of the Lord does valiantly; the right hand of the Lord is exalted; the right hand of the Lord does valiantly.” I shall not die, but I shall live, and recount the deeds of the Lord. The Lord has punished me severely, but he did not give me over to death. Open to me the gates of righteousness, that I may enter through them and give thanks to the Lord. This is the gate of the Lord; the righteous shall enter through it. I thank you that you have answered me and have become my salvation. The stone that the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone. This is the Lord’s doing; it is marvelous in our eyes. This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.

Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24

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Think

Psalm 118 is one of the most-quoted in the New Testament, and this idea that “the stone that the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone” appears to be one of the chief arguments of the New Testament preachers: that Jesus — who was rejected by the scribes, the chief priests, and the elders — was God’s choice all along.

Wouldn’t that be a wonderful reversal, a tasty “I told you so”? You can almost hear the triumph in these verses, especially as they would have been recited in the early church: “This is the Lord’s doing! It is marvelous in our eyes! This is the day that the Lord has made! Let us rejoice and be glad in it!”

Have you ever had one of those moments when it turned out you were right all along? Wasn’t it wonderful?

Isn’t this?

Jim Somerville

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Pray

This is the day that you have made, Lord. Don’t let me reject your plans for me. Let me embrace them, so when it turns out you were right all along, I will be right along with you. Amen.

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Go

Christ is living, no more weeping, no more time for grief and pain!
Neither death nor tomb could hold Christ, who is living once again.
Do not look among the dead for one who lives most certainly;
Christ is living! Hear the good news that resounds so joyfully.

Nicolas Martinez

Jim Somerville

Jim Somerville is the pastor of First Baptist Church, Richmond, Virginia. He is married to the former Christy Treadwell and they have two daughters, Ellie and Catherine, both of whom grew up going to Passport. Jim enjoys backpacking and almost any other activity that gets him outdoors.

Crown Him with Many Crowns

Rodrigo Rodriquez

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