Jesus is Risen
“It is true!”
Luke 24:34

Death could not hold onto Life any more than the grave could hold onto Jesus. At dawn in a garden cemetery, Life swallowed Death once and for all.

“I am the Resurrection and the Life,” Jesus had once said. Now He proved.

An angel rolled back the giant stone and sat on it, waiting for Jesus to come out. By the time Mary from Magdala arrived, things in the garden looked normal, except the soldiers had run off and the stone was rolled back from its opening. The tomb was empty but for the burial cloths.

In that quiet, little garden, God was walking around!

And, at first, He passed as a gardener.

Mary! Don’t you want to shout at her? It’s Him! It’s Jesus!

“Why are you crying?” He asked her, pretending, savoring the moment, ready to burst with the surprise of Himself. But because of her sorrow, He ended his tender charade. He said her name: “Mary.”

His voice. Surely His heart was heard in the sound. Loving . . . inviting . . . tender.

At once, Mary knew Him. So what does she do?

She throws herself at His feet—in possessive worship. She clings to Him like she will never let Him go! And, indeed, she never will.

But He has plans for her, plans for the two of them, plans for each of us.

Soon she would “cling” to Him in a whole new way—in Spirit and Truth. She would forever and ever cling to Him. But, just then, in the garden, she must let go of Him. His voice, loving and kind, said, “I have not yet risen to my Father.”

He surely laughed softly to Himself, blessed by her show of affection. She must have been clinging to His feet, weeping and crying from sheer happiness.

She must let go, but not for long. He promised her that.

And so He said, “Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am returning to My Father and your Father, to My God and your God.”

His own beloved ones, from then on, would know the Father on the same intimate level as the Son. Jesus couldn’t have been more delighted in the telling of that news.

Here we see a human and divine Lord Jesus enjoying Himself. While Jesus is in the garden with Mary, it seemed He didn’t know just what to do with Himself. First, He tells her to go and tell His disciples He will see them in Galilee. Then He shows up in the upper room wanting to be with them, asking them to touch Him, proving He is not a ghost, and enjoying their surprise.

Humanly speaking, can you imagine how Jesus felt after His resurrection? Surely, Jesus’ heart felt ecstatic, bursting joy. He had made the way open for His friends to call His Father their Father, His God their God. He revealed the love of the Father to them—He had redeemed humankind back to God. He wanted to return to Heaven but He was not ready to leave them just yet. Jesus loved them so much He wanted to show Himself to them and share His joy with them. He wanted, more than anything, for His own to see and know Him in reality, as their God.


In a Garden

It began in a garden, long, long ago
When the Creator gave Life and walked with His own
Now, here in a garden His holy Seed lies
Sown in the earth, for love, He has died

In a garden, the Creator had always foreseen
In a garden, to walk again, with His redeemed