Every day is the Lord’s Day. Every Sunday is a day that we celebrate that our Lord is risen from the Grave. Yet on one specific day, one exclusive Sunday, today, we give particular attention to the wonderful Good News: Jesus lived; Jesus died; and yes, Jesus lives!
Have you ever noticed that the LORD is an Early Riser? Throughout the Scriptures, Jesus did things early in the morning. He prayed early, he walked on the water in the “last watch,” just before Dawn. Even after his resurrection, He made breakfast for his disciples early in the morning. Maybe there is something to this? Maybe there is a reason that the Bible speaks of the importance of Dawn, both metaphorically and literally?
Consider that Humanity has always been somewhat afraid of the Dark and especially the NIGHT; and for good reason. In the time before sidewalks, streetlights, the ambient glow of the city, security lights, night-lights, and flashlights…it was dark, truly dark. In the darkness sometimes lurked predatory animals, venomous snakes, men intent on malice, and even the most paralyzing of fears: the unknown. Darkness limits our sight, makes us more vulnerable to Danger, and exacerbates the uncertainties that we already have about life.
Now, try to imagine just how dark it must have been for the Followers of Jesus in those days and nights between Gethsemane, Golgotha, and that Sunday Morning. There were dangers lurking in the night: Soldiers who would arrest them or worse. Vigilantes and the mob, who would stamp out this small group of troublemakers, and the internal disappointment, doubt, and despair that the One in whom they had placed their hopes was ruthlessly and brutally killed and his body was now in a cold, dark tomb.
What about you, Beloved, have you experienced the Darkness of the Night…the Terror of the Unknown…the cruelty of The Predator? Everyone does, THE NIGHT comes to all; and if you haven’t walked through it yet, then you haven’t really lived life. Because this is not Hell, the Place of Utter Darkness and it is not Heaven, the Place without Night…this is a Fallen World and we have both DAY AND NIGHT. Life Happens to Everyone, thus we all must walk through The Night.
Why didn’t Jesus rise from the Grave at Noon or Two in the afternoon? Why didn’t He rise just before dinner? Why was it “in the morning”? Because it had to be…He had to END the NIGHT: not just Saturday night, not just the agony of the Disciples, not just the terrors of that horrible weekend. But He arose to END YOUR Nights and Mine, to end all the Darkness and allow the Dawn to break forth. On that first Easter Sunday, it was THE DAY that changed everything: the World, Hell, and yes, even Heaven! Everything that happened before was NIGHT, but now the DAY was DAWNING…Because Jesus arose! Therefore, it had to be in the morning!
Matthew 28:1 NLT - Early on Sunday morning, as the new day was dawning…
Dr. Tobey Montgomery