A long time ago a handful of women walked to a cemetery to mourn the loss of their friend and the loss of their hope. They had followed this strange preacher and healer for a number of years, hanging onto his every word and action. They came to believe that the person who ate and drank with them was the very Word that called the universe into its being; was the very hand of the God who had delivered them out of slavery. In him, they saw the future of the world in peace and healing, and hope.
His word, his message of peace, while honey to his followers, was dangerously subversive to the authorities. His act of healing, while delighting those who were injured, upset the established order. So the authorities, the established order, arrested him, crucified him, and laid him in a tomb. To silence him forever. To stop his works forever.
The Word that called the universe into its being was not kept silenced. The hand of God which led the ancients to their freedom was not kept still. Like a stubborn weed in the garden of the grave, it sprung up, took flower, and lived once again.
But the women didn't know it. They were unprepared for the rebirth of hope.
And when they reached the tomb, the place where their hope lay wrapped in bandages, they did not see what they expected to see.
Instead, an angel sent from heaven met them and said, "The Word you thought silenced forever, the hand of healing you thought stilled for good, he is not here. He has risen from the dead. Your friend and helper is alive. Your hope is rekindled. The future is assured.
"Christ is alive!
"Now go and tell your friends and family what has happened here. How you saw the life and love of God."
And they went in amazement, wonder and told their friends and families, who told their friends and families, who told their friends and families all through the centuries. For almost two thousand years they told their friends and families until they whispered it into your ears, "Christ is alive. Hope is Alive. Live is alive. Peace is alive."
Alleluia! The Lord is risen. The Lord is risen indeed! Alleluia!