By Travis Lauterbach
When the question gets asked what the longest season of the Church year is, the one that often comes to mind is Lent. Maybe that’s due to the more subdued, solemnity of the season.
However, the forty-day observance of Lent is bested in length by the fifty-day jubilation of Easter. The impact, importance, and effects of Easter are so grand that the celebration goes on and on for seven weeks.
For many generations, Christians have traditionally greeted each other in this season, saying, “Christ is risen!” And the other person saying, “He is risen, indeed!”
I, for one, may be guilty of over-using it. I say it many times on Easter Sunday and the weeks following.
That one little greeting and response has behind it themes of peace, comfort, and joy.
The greeting is full of peace because Jesus was vindicated in resurrection.
He was judged and sentenced to die a sinner’s death. However, the grave could not contain Him. Death could not keep its grip on Him and after three days, He was raised in glorious triumph.
He died for the sins of the world and God raised Him from death. His sacrifice was pleasing and effective. He effected a new and positive relationship between God and humankind. For His sake sins are forgiven.
Therefore, the greeting is also full of comfort because death is defeated.
Scripture describes Christ as the resurrected “first-fruits”. His death on the cross and third day resurrection for the world opened the kingdom of heaven to all believers.
All who believe in Him shall be raised to eternal life. This provides great comfort to those who mourn the death of loved ones and to those who worry about their own death.
The greeting is full of joy because the Savior lives to give comfort and peace.
The Lord of love who gave of Himself to save, forgive, deliver, rescue, comfort, restore, strengthen, refresh, and encourage others did not stay dead. He rose in victory.
This joy of the Lord to seek and save people, by death and resurrection, spreads joy all around.