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He is risen!

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Charis
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As I’ve been thinking about this celebratory season, it strikes me as very significant that Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection happened during the festival of Pesach, or Passover (and are celebrated by Christians at the same time as Jews celebrate Passover to this day).

In Jesus’ time, Passover was a festival marked by sacrifice; to this day it’s a time of literally and figuratively “cleaning out” not only one’s home but one’s heart, of commemorating freedom from slavery and celebrating hope for the future. At the same time, it coincides with the beginning of spring, which since ancient times has been celebrated in different ways around the world as the beginning of new life.

Sacrifice, cleansing, freedom, hope, new life. What better time could there be to realise Jesus’ sublime victory? His life and ministry of selflessness and healing, culminating in his supreme self-sacrifice and resurrection from the grave, prove for all time that evil never has the last word; that all the envy, bigotry, violence and murderous hatred in the world are reduced to nothing in the light of divine Love’s all-power and presence; that death itself is a mortal illusion; that our true Life, our true being, is deathless, indestructible, pure, whole and holy.

The blessing and power of that victory reach through all time and encompass all humanity, regardless of who we are or what we believe personally - just as the sun’s light and the rain’s refreshment and the spring flowers’ beauty are poured out for all, not just for a select few.

Rather than chocolate eggs (nice though those are!), I’d like to share some thoughts and inspiration from others who have felt and experienced the blessings of this special time.

Have a listen to these two short audio podcasts (about 2 ½ minutes each) with a message of hope and healing. Each one comes with a link to a further inspirational article or audio programme for all to enjoy:

[url]No cross without a crown[/url]

[url]He is risen![/url]

(I also had the privilege last year of visiting the Garden Tomb in East Jerusalem, mentioned in the second podcast, and can vouch for its incredible beauty and spiritual atmosphere.)

Endless blessings of Love and Life to you all!

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Principled
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Thanks Charis for this.

Like you (and Phil Davis on the link), I too have visited the Garden Tomb in Jerusalem and have to say it was the most memorable place I've ever been to in my life. It was also one of the most inspirational and moving experiences of my life.

There are two places in Jerusalem where Jesus was thought to have been buried, one is the [url]Church of the Holy Sepulchre[/url] up on top of the hill, with its "bells and smalls" and overpowering gilt and glitter and the other is the [url]Garden Tomb[/url]. You get a deeply spiritual feeling in the Garden Tomb, a peaceful, beautiful place, with deafening bird song; of what it must have been like during that momentous weekend far more than in the overwhelming memorial up the hill.

This is from their description:

The Garden Tomb is believed by many to be the garden and sepulchre of Joseph of Arimathea, and therefore a possible site of the resurrection of Jesus….
The Garden Tomb is an alternative site to the famous Holy Sepulchre for you to consider the Crucifixion and Resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. The Garden is a beautiful place in which you will discover several things that were all here on the night Jesus died and which match the accounts in the four Gospels. We never claim to be in the right place as we could never prove that; but where Jesus died is of little importance compared with why. So here we ask you to open the Bible and see what it says about these vital Christian truths.

There were a couple of things that our guide said that left a deep impression on me. He told us that Jesus didn't need to have the stone rolled away in order to get out of the tomb. The stone had to be rolled away so that everyone else could look in and see that the tomb was empty......

Another thing I remember so deeply from the tour was an explanation of the Greek words rendered “saw” in John 20 in most English language Bibles.

John outran Peter and got to the sepulchre first
John 20:5
and stooping and looking in, he saw [blepo] the linen wrappings lying there; but he did not go in.
Blepo is a quick glance, seeing with the eye, looking. John, at that first glance did not realize what had taken place.

John 20:6
And so Simon Peter also came, following him, and entered the tomb; and he saw [theopeo] the linen wrappings lying there.
Peter beheld, looked carefully, observed attentively. The huge significance of those linen cloths was beginning to dawn on him.

John 20:8
So the other disciple who had first come to the tomb then also entered, and he saw [horao] and believed.
John entered the tomb and saw with his mind (rather than just his eyes) he perceived with intelligent comprehension, he understood that Jesus had risen from the dead and then, he believed.

Jesus proved for all time that life is eternal and that death is powerless in the face of infinite Life and that hatred is powerless in the face of divine Love. His resurrection and ascension were the pinnacle of human history. He is risen!

Love and peace,

Judy

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Principled
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As I’ve been thinking about this celebratory season, it strikes me as very significant that Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection happened during the festival of Pesach, or Passover (and are celebrated by Christians at the same time as Jews celebrate Passover to this day).

I love this special time of year and have been thinking about its deep significance. These are the dates this year, which show how the two commemorations are linked:

Passover 2017 will begin in the evening of Monday 10 April and ends in the evening of Tuesday 18 April

Good Friday is on Friday 14th April and Easter Sunday is on Sunday 16th April.

For anyone wanting to read (or listen) to a thoughtful and healing perspective of Easter, here is a link:
[url]Easter’s timeless message: immortality brought to light [/url]

"So Easter time is a time for rejoicing in the uplifting inspiration of resurrection and the immortality of man that Jesus revealed to the world; it is a time to hear the angel’s message, “He is not here: for he is risen” ([url]Matthew 28:6[/url]). He is where he has always been, at one with his Father in heaven, demonstrating for all mankind and for all time that Life is eternal and man is immortal. )...

..Easter is a time to be grateful for Christ Jesus’ unparalleled example of our true life and its immortality being brought to light!"

"He is risen!"

Blessings to you all.

Judy

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Principled
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Last night I experienced the most powerful and moving passion story imaginable. It was called "The Devil's passion" or " Easter in Hell" and is a one-man show told from the perspective of that well-known Christian character, Satan, or the Devil. He's giving three performances in London this Easter week (2017) and also in Salisbury on Wed.

Butcher wrote the play and plays all the characters, with strength, intensity, humour and love. It's powerful, emotional and disturbing. It's set in the 21st C against the backdrop of terrorism, corruption, fear, hate etc. This article gives a very thoughtful insight into it:

QUOTE: "Butcher says he wants to convey the idea that “Hell is wherever God is not, and wherever Satan’s power, bondage, and imprisonment, victimhood disease, oppression violence… wherever these things hold sway.

“It’s not a subterranean cavern, which is how the medieval mind understood it.”

And so the The Devil’s Passion, strangely enough, speaks of the ongoing work of God in the world, and not only Christ’s overcoming death in hell. In the world of the play, the “principalities and powers” of evil are clearly present, but so too is the love of God." END OF QUOTE

If you live near London - or Salisbury - don't miss it!

Love and peace,

Judy

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