EASTER DAY – SUNDAY

LESSON: MARK 16:1-8

Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid; go and tell my brethren to go to Galilee, and there they will see me.” Matthew 28:10

Jesus Himself pointed out the benefit of His suffering, death, and resurrection when He said to the women, “Do not be afraid; go and tell my brethren to go to Galilee, and there they will see me.”

This is the first word that they heard from Jesus after His resurrection from the dead. He hereby confirms all His former teachings, as well as the blessings He had already conferred on them. They are reminded here that they will now indeed be the recipients of all these blessings. Not only this but He also intimates that the Christians who believe His words are His “brethren” even though they do not see like the apostles did.

He does not wait until we beg or beseech Him that we may become His brethren. All ideas of meritorious services are completely ruled out here.

What did the apostles merit? Peter denied the Lord three times; the other disciples all fled from Him; they stayed with Him like a hare stays with its young. He should have called them deserters, traitors, and scoundrels rather than brethren. So, this word was sent to them through these women by sheer mercy and grace.

The apostles could not help feeling this. We feel it, too, when we are held fast in sins, temptations, and damnation.

SL 11:603 (2-3)

PRAYER: We thank and praise you, dear Lord Jesus, for the wonderful grace and mercy which You have so richly bestowed upon us unworthy sinners in demonstrating by Your resurrection that we are Your brethren, with all the privileges of brethren. Amen.

Editor’s note: No American Edition (AE) equivalent for today’s sermon excerpt exists at the time of this publication. For an alternate English translation of this sermon, see Lenker, Church Postil—Gospels, 2:215-221.