Easter II, 2023

He is Risen!

The preacher in this season will need to find a way to make that sound fresh for another six weeks. By the end of May, you still want to be a preacher of the resurrection with passion. How you start this week might just have a bearing on how you end. Ask yourself the question of why Jesus rose from the dead. What do you imagine that He is doing right now? I think too many of us have a static image of Jesus. We say in the conclusion to liturgical collects that “He lives and reigns with the Father and the Spirit…” What do you image that living and reigning look like? I think now you have a way to preach “He is risen!” for six weeks and more.

You cannot simply repeat that Jesus rose from the dead. This is true, but is it a sermon? A real sermon will connect with the lives of the hearer right now. It will challenge the hearer and call for repentance, faith, action, or something from the hearer. Simply stating the truth is not yet a sermon. The Holy Spirit will use it, surely, but let Him use your preaching with intent.

I have always found that proclaiming that Jesus rose from the dead to care for his people is a great way to start with this. Jesus rose to challenge Thomas’ failure of faith and to bless all of us who believe without seeing. Jesus rose from the dead to be our shepherd. Jesus rose from the dead because being dead meant he was not the active head of the Church. Jesus rose from the dead to comfort the women who ran from the tomb afraid and with joy. The angel had said to them, “Do not be afraid.” But they still were afraid. So Jesus showed up and took away their fear.

There is a sermon series I have written which you might find useful. You can find it here. But there are many ways to work this and perhaps you have a better way. Preach well!

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