Christ is risen! He is risen indeed! Alleluia!

by Pastor Pete Panitzke on April 12, 2020

“If Christ has not been raised, then our faith is futile” (1 Corinthians 15:17). This is the great “IF” of Easter. Let us come together to the empty tomb and find that “It is true! The Lord has risen!” (Luke 24:34). Click here for the Seven Candles—Seven Words service from the sanctuary. Click here for The Bridge live stream at 10:15 am. "Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who have fallen asleep" (1 Corinthians 15:20). Alleluia!

Rescue from the Valley of Achor and Rededication

Great victory was followed by defeat. Why? A one sentence condemnation: “The Israelites were unfaithful.” The place was called the Valley of Achor or the Valley of Trouble. Read about in Joshua 7 & 8 (click here). The reading ends with God’s people rededicating themselves at Mt. Gerizim and Mt. Ebal as Moses had commanded. A fitting reading this Easter morning as we confess the trouble that we have brought upon ourselves because of our own sin, we celebrate Jesus’ rescue from our Valley of Achor, and rededicate ourselves in our Easter services.

Trouble Causes the Church to Spread

Persecution continues to follow Paul and Barnabas on their first missionary journey. In Acts 13:42-53 (click here to read), persecution forces them to leave one city and go to the next. But their own Valley of Achor did not discourage them. “The disciples were filled with joy and the Holy Spirit.”

May the persecution by a virus that has forced us out of our churches be used by God to spread his word like never before. For example, our Good Friday Tenebrae Service (click here) has been viewed over 1500 times! As one individual wrote: “I have seen/experienced many Good Friday worship Tenebrae services. This is the best one especially for today this year. Thank you!” Share this great news with a friend!

Christ has died. Christ is risen! Christ will come again!

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