April 17, 2019
During these days before Resurrection Sunday, I have been thinking about evidence of life after death. It is springtime in the Pacific Northwest, and people are beginning to work in their gardens. Before long, planting will begin. Seeds will be put in the ground and covered with soil.
Most objects put in that environment would immediately begin to decompose, but not those seeds. While their outer shell gives way to moisture, their inner life begins to expand and grow. Within a few days, a plant will appear. It is a statement of life after death. Jesus said, “Unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds” (John 12:24).
Romans 5 connects with Genesis 3 to show us that Adam’s sin in the Garden of Eden, which plunged the human race into death, was remedied by Savior Jesus when He died to save us from our sin. The Garden of Eden carried a message of hope in the promise of Someone who would eventually destroy sin and demonstrate victory. This was fulfilled by the empty tomb in the garden where Jesus’ body was placed.
John 20 records the scene where Mary Magdalene is in the garden and Jesus’ tomb is empty. She is so focused on finding His body that she does not recognize Him when He speaks to her. Along with Jesus’ disciples, she had not caught on to the resurrection of Jesus from the dead. Like many people today, Mary knew about Jesus, but she did not know Him as her risen Savior and Lord.
When Jesus called her name, everything changed at that moment and forever for Mary. Her broken heart turned to joyful worship. Her experience is what Jesus offers to everyone who will believe that He is God – the Risen, Eternal Savior and King. I pray that our spring gardening will turn our mind and heart to the One Who was willing to die in our place and Who is our resurrected Savior.
Pastor Bill Ehmann