A highlight from April 4, 2021: Easter Sunday
I love a great story with an unexpected ending. There are some comic movie examples of this clack classic example of course From my generation is the end of the empire strikes back when we learned the connection between. Darth vader. And luke skywalker. I remember sitting in the movie theater as a kid. Totally stunned. and i've been hooked on unexpected endings. Ever since one of the most famous examples came out twenty years later in one thousand nine hundred ninety nine. Six cents is a creepy story about a kid who communes with the dead. My wife whitney. And i saw that one in the theater together and it still shocking ending. I've ever seen one of the things that i love about. Unexpected endings is that they caused us to rethink. What's come before or at least two replay it in our mind. A good storyteller will leave redcliffe breadcrumbs along the way so that if we re watch the story or reread the story as the case may be we'll see the hence the clues the foreshadowing that ultimately pays off at the end. In fact the best stories make us want to revisit them over and over again. Which of course is what we're doing here today. Now maybe you are new to the christian faith and this is your very first easter worship service if so you may not yet know that this is the most important day in our calendar and you're in for a treat because the story that we're telling today is the one that we believe is the most important story ever told most of us though i'm guessing have been to at least a few easter worship services before and if that's true for you you're probably familiar with at least some of the details of this story. You're probably expecting to hear some of these details today. For example you may remember that part about the big earthquake. And the angel who descends from heaven and rolls back the stone to open the tomb detail which as it turns out is only found in matthew's gospel by the way if you always thought that the stone had been removed from the tomb before the women arrive your memory is not failing you that is actually the way the other three gospels. Tell the story or you may remember how after the women enter the tomb tomb men and dazzling close suddenly appear out of nowhere next to them understandably startling them and these two strangers explained to the women what's happened. And then they run off until the disciples who for their part. Don't believe it. Those particular details are only in luke's gospel or maybe you remember that that. Poignant scene between mary magdalene and jesus in the garden outside the tomb. The story goes that she sees jesus but mistakes. Him at first for the gardner. Many of us love that part of the story. There's even a beloved him based on that story in the garden but that particular scene is only in john's gospel this morning. We're actually not going to hear any of those kind of familiar details. We're not going to hear about an earthquake. We're not going to hear about a descending angel. We're not going to hear about news with incredulous disciples. There's no appearance of the of the remaining eleven disciples actually nor is there even an appearance of jesus for that matter instead. The version of the story that we're reading today is the earliest accounts of the resurrection from the first gospel to have been written the gospel of mark. And i'll just be honest with you here. Mark's gospel is not really my my go-to gospel certainly not for the easter story.