Bible Readings for April 1, 2018

Christ is risen! He is risen indeed! Alleluia!
As the people of God, we have the greatest message in which to rejoice! Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ has defeated sin, death, and the devil in His death and resurrection, and He gives us forgiveness, life, and salvation! Thanks be to God!

The readings for today celebrate God’s victory over death.

The First Reading is recorded in the prophet Isaiah, 25:6-9. This passage is very appropriate for Easter Sunday, and is one that is often read at funerals. Notice the hope that the Lord gives to His people through Isaiah: one day the Lord will swallow up death forever, and the covering of death itself will be destroyed. In His grace and mercy, the Lord has done just this: through Jesus’ death and resurrection death itself has been defeated. We will pass through death, but by grace through faith we will receive eternal life through Jesus. Let us rejoice!
Lord God, all thanks and praise to You for this wonderful prophecy of Isaiah which points to Jesus’ death and resurrection, and all praise and thanks to You for the fulfillment of this prophecy in Jesus! Keep us in faith, empower us to rejoice each day for the eternal life we have in Jesus! Amen!

The psalm for today, psalm 16, is a psalm of David. David faced many hardships and dangers in life, but the Lord delivered him from them all. David rejoiced in God’s deliverance of him.
As you read the psalm, read it from the perspective of Jesus, as if these are the words of Jesus Himself. Notice how the psalm fits Jesus: He trusted in the heavenly Father, and Jesus was not abandoned to the place of the dead.
Read the psalm again, but this time from our perspective through Jesus: that through Jesus these words are ours as well: the heavenly Father will not abandon us to death, but will give us life through Jesus.
Oh Lord, thanks and praise to You for raising Jesus to life, and thanks and praise to You for raising us to life through Him! Amen!

Paul’s first letter to Corinth is filled with Paul’s responses to problems that arose in Corinth because of false teachers. Apparently there were those in Corinth who were twisting the teaching of the resurrection; so, in 1 Corinthians 15:1-11, Paul had to again present to them the truth of the resurrection. Notice what Paul says is of first importance – the reason why Christ died, and the sequence of events leading to Jesus’ revelation of Himself to Paul on the road to Damascus. Paul boldly and clearly proclaims that Jesus died for our sins, was raised, and appeared to many, many people. He was crucified, He was raised, and now He lives forever! Thanks be to God!
Thanks be to You, O God, for the resurrection! Keep us in faith in Jesus! Amen!

The Gospel is recorded in Mark 16:1-8. The women who went to the tomb early that Sunday morning expected to find a quiet grave. They were surprised by what they found: no body of Jesus, but an angel who announced He is risen! At first the women didn’t know what to do, but later they did what the angel told them to do: they went and told the others that Jesus is risen! And the world has never been the same.
Let this Good News of Jesus’ death and resurrection change your life each day; live life from the perspective of His victory over sin, death, and the devil. Rejoice each day in the life He gives!
Lord, calm our fears, dispel our doubts, open our eyes to see the empty tomb of Jesus’ resurrection, and then send us to go and tell that Jesus is risen! He is risen indeed! Alleluia! Amen!

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