Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church - Marshfield, WI

Lent Devotional - April 9, 2023

Hymn: “Now All the Vault of Heaven Resounds” (LSB #465, v. 1–2)
 Now all the vault of heav’n resounds
In praise of love that still abound:
“Christ has triumphed! He is living!”
Sing, choirs of angels, loud and clear!
Repeat their song of glory here:
“Christ has triumphed! Christ has triumphed”
Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!

Eternal is the gift He brings,
Therefore our heart with rapture sings:
“Christ has triumphed! He is living”
Now still He comes to give us life
And by His presence stills all strife.
“Christ has triumphed! He is living!”
Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!
            Alleluia! Christ is risen! He is risen indeed! Alleluia! This is it, folks. The moment we have all been waiting for. The resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ is the most important event in human history. It causes all of heaven to resound with the praise of God’s love. It marks the moment when the choirs of angels sing loud and clear. We join their song of glory as we sing anew, “Alleluia!,” a word that we have not used for the past seven weeks. Praise the Lord! Our Christ has triumphed and is alive again!

            This is a reminder to us that Easter and Good Friday must always come together. While we rightly emphasize the work of Christ upon the cross, it is the moment of loss, as I mentioned in Wednesday’s devotion. Here, on Easter morning, when Christ is alive again, this is the moment of His triumph. Saint Paul picks up on this in his first epistle to the Corinthians. “If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins…If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied” (1 Corinthians 15:17, 19). However, Christ is risen. He is victorious over the grave and therefore our faith in Him is not in vain.

            Even now, on this blessed Easter morning, Christ still comes to give us life and still all strife by His glorious presence. He brings an eternal gift to us this morning. His life is now our life. Since we have been united to Christ in Baptism, His resurrection is our resurrection now and will be our resurrection on the Last Day. We live because Christ has risen from the dead, lives and reigns to all eternity. On this Easter morning, as we receive the Lord’s body and blood, Christ gives His resurrected life to us. It is not just the fruits of His cross, but also the fruit of His empty tomb. Christ is risen and gives you His own life today. Praise the Lord! Alleluia!

            After a season that was so focused upon the death of Christ, now we begin a season focused upon His life. Easter is not just a single day celebration. It is a season, fifty days long. We’ll follow this theme all the way until Memorial Day weekend, when we celebrate Pentecost. Christians value the life of Christ so much that we will come to receive it throughout this entire season. The life of Christ, this eternal gift, is given to us through His Word and Sacraments, provided in public worship. You all are aware that there are many who call themselves Christians who will fill our sanctuaries on Easter Sunday and then we won’t see them again until Christmastime. How can we value the life which Christ gives if we only come to receive it twice a year? Now still He comes to give us life. Come and receive it each and every time He gives it.

            Have a blessed and joyous Easter. Christ is risen and He gives you His life. Alleluia!
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