Reflections: Saturday of the Third Week of Easter

Today’s Reading: Introit for the Fourth Sunday of Easter

          (Psalm 66:3, 5, 8-9; antiphon: v.1-2)

Daily Lectionary:  Exodus 40:17-38; Luke 8:40-56 

Say to God, “How awesome are your deeds! So great is your power that your enemies come cringing to you.” (From the Introit for the Fourth Sunday of Easter)

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. This psalm places into our mouth and on our lips the appropriate praise for our heavenly Father. He is the Creator of heaven and earth. Even His enemies are summoned to acknowledge His power, although they “come cringing” before the Lord of glory (Psalm 66:3b). 

We can think of a myriad of stories where God’s people were rescued from their enemies. In many ways it seems like something that we rarely get to experience ourselves. But we do not merely sit back and read about God’s mighty deeds. Instead, we live in them, because He carries out His continued work for us today. Each day He reveals His mighty arm which was stretched out on the Cross to take away our sins. God’s great power was hidden and, at the same time revealed, at the Cross. 

Every time your pastor proclaims Absolution to you, God is working His mighty deed for you. On that first Easter, God’s power over our enemy of death was proclaimed for the entire world. Jesus would walk out of the empty tomb, risen from the dead. In the wonderful waters of Holy Baptism God the Holy Spirit has marked you with the sign of the Cross on your forehead and heart to signify that you have died and risen with Christ. Death is destroyed, Hell is overcome and our enemies have been defeated. 

Jesus is the One who prepares a table before you in the presence of your enemies of sin and death. As you partake of His Body and Blood you are receiving the mighty deeds of God for your forgiveness and the strengthening of faith. “Come and see what God has done: he is awesome in his deeds toward the children of man.” In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. 

Merciful and everlasting God, You did not spare Your only Son but delivered Him up for us all to bear our sins on the cross. Grant that our hearts may be so fixed with steadfast faith in Him that we fear not the power of sin, death, and the devil; through the same Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen. (Collect for Wednesday of Holy Week)

-Rev. Kent Schaaf is pastor of Grace Lutheran Church in Little Rock, AR.

Audio Reflections Speaker: Rev. Duane Bamsch

Over eight sessions, The Messiah: Revealing Jesus in the Old Testament will lead you through the entirety of the Old Testament with daily readings, questions, and discussion prompts. After a brief introduction that reviews Christ’s earthly ministry, you will dive into the heart of the Holy Books that have spiritually nourished God’s people from creation to today! Now available from Concordia Publishing House.