“To See and Believe”

On April 21, Pastor Katy preaches on John 20:1, 11-18.

1 Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the tomb.

11 But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb; 12 and she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had been lying, one at the head and the other at the feet. 13 They said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?” She said to them, “They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him.” 14 When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not know that it was Jesus. 15 Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you looking for?” Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.” 16 Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to him in Hebrew, “Rabbouni!” (which means Teacher). 17 Jesus said to her, “Do not hold on to me, because I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and say to them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’” 18 Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord”; and she told them that he had said these things to her.

In today’s world of grief and pain, we need resurrection. In our increasingly polarized and isolating society, we need hope. When we look back to the Garden of Eden in the Book of Genesis, we find a story about our own brokenness, but that story is not the final word. The same God who walks in the garden with Adam and Eve, shows up in the person of Jesus to walk in garden with Mary Magdalene. A lot happens in between those two garden stories, but like Mary Magdalene, we have a tendency to keep our focus on the tomb. Jesus shows up among us, but are we ready to enter into a new story and shift from the grave to a new creation? Are we ready to truly see and to believe?