O God, for our redemption You have given Your only-begotten Son to the death of the cross, and by His glorious resurrection You have delivered us from the power of our enemy. Therefore, grant that all our sin may be drowned through daily repentance and that day by day a new person may arise to live before You in righteousness and purity forever.
The one thing most people want is happiness. Our expressions at Easter indicate that Easter is supposed to a happy time, “Easter Joy” and “Happy Easter” are just a few expressions, which come to mind. It is a time of rejoicing not because of our happy circumstances but because, and only because of what God has done for us in the Resurrection. True Christians are happy regardless of the hardships they may face. If circumstances indicate that you may be experiencing hardships, handicaps and misfortunes God has a message for you this day – Easter joy is based not on outward circumstances rather on God’s victory, which He invites you to share this day.
Easter is a happy time because…
I. It is a feast – Isaiah 25:6 On this mountain the LORD Almighty will prepare a feast of rich food for all peoples, a banquet of aged wine— the best of meats and the finest of wines.
A. This passage from Isaiah looks forward to the day when God would destroy death forever. Isaiah looks to the day when God would offer a fest for all the nations. A banquet in the Old Testament stood as a symbol of the consummation of God’s saving purpose in history.
B. This feast is a celebration of God’s victory over death. God will swallow death up forever and thus death will no longer plague mankind. This is the work of God, and people have reason to celebrate His salvation with joy.
II. It is a victory – Isaiah 25:7-8 On this mountain he will destroy the shroud that enfolds all peoples, the sheet that covers all nations; he will swallow up death forever. The Sovereign LORD will wipe away the tears from all faces; he will remove the disgrace of his people from all the earth. The LORD has spoken.
A. A question could be asked, “How can we find an Easter message in an Old Testament passage? It is found in the form of a promise of the future. The future was fulfilled on Easter.
B. Today, we’ve been given a perspective of God’s plan of salvation, which was in His mind from the time of creation. When Isaiah wrote these words is was God Himself giving us His Word. On Easter God gave us His deed!
III. It is salvation – Isaiah 25:9 In that day they will say, “Surely this is our God; we trusted in him, and he saved us. This is the LORD; we trusted in him; let us rejoice and be glad in his salvation.
A. Your happiness does not depend on your well- being in this world. Christians to this hour are oppressed, persecuted, and defeated yet they still rejoice. How so?
B. The reason is the source of Christian’s joy – God. A person can rejoice because God Himself has defeated our worst enemy – death. God has provided a banquet feast for us.
On Easter, we celebrate the reality that life overcomes death by the power of the resurrection. This was the promise Isaiah hoped for – for us today we celebrate its reality. Now death is dead forever! This is what God has done for us! This is reason for rejoicing and celebration.
- Julius Schnoor von Carolsfeld ©WELS;