Reflections: November 10, 2020
Tuesday of the Third-Last Week of the Church Year
By Aaron Fenker
If we believe that Jesus died and rose, thus we also believe that God will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep in Jesus. (1 Thessalonians 4:14)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. You can have hope. In a hopeless world, there really is hope. You don't have to despair. There's no reason to give up or be angry at others. No reason to get upset by what happens or to be afraid of a virus. You don't have to be scared. You have hope.
The world is hopeless. That's the foundation of a lot of people's worldview. The world's hopeless because it's meaningless. The only meaning we have is what we make for ourselves. The universe came from nothing. The world will return to nothing. We're just a speck of dust in the vast universe that's spinning out of control--no rhyme or reason to it. There's destruction, disease, and death. It's what we see. It's what we experience.
But there is hope. When someone dies or there's disease or destruction, you don't have to grieve like other people who have no hope. You don't have to get angry. You don't have to despair. Your hope has a Name: Jesus.
When everything seems hopeless, Jesus is your Hope. When everything's dark, He is your Light. When you've got conflict and fear, He is your peace. When you've got sins, Jesus is your redemption. When you're struggling in the good works God's given you to do, Jesus is your righteousness. When you die--whenever and however you die-- Jesus is your life.
Jesus is risen from the dead! His empty tomb changes the universe. Dead people don't stay dead anymore! His empty tomb changes your universe--and your eternity, too! Not only because Jesus died and rose for you, but because you've been baptized into His death and His resurrection. You will rise from the dead because in Baptism you have already. Now death is just a nap. You will sleep in Jesus because you're baptized.
You'll rise in Jesus, too. He will raise you from the dead, along with all those who have already fallen asleep trusting in Him. At the final trumpet, the Last Day, you and all other believers in Christ will rise from the dead and live forever with Jesus. His Father will do this for you, by the Spirit, though His Son. Your Baptism says so!
Christ is risen! You're baptized! Different parts of the same gift, the same truth, the same hope. That hope is yours, delivered at the font. Now Jesus is yours and you are His, now and forever. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.
-Rev. Aaron T. Fenker is the pastor of Bethlehem and Immanuel Lutheran churches in Bremen, KS.
He is also the dean of theology for Higher Things.
He is also the dean of theology for Higher Things.
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