The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


From death to life to disciple

From death to life to disciple. Now that’s a leap. Let’s not put on those Easter glasses too soon but live in the moment, or rather the moments with Christ and his people just after the resurrection.

Jesus didn’t appear at the synagogue or ride into Jerusalem for all to see. He came only to people who knew and loved him. They were the ones who held his feet, who heard his voice, who touched his wounds, who proclaimed him Lord. They were the ones who then “waited for the power from on high.”

Jesus had conquered death and redeemed the world, and yet he only showed himself to those who knew him as beloved rabbi. This was a blessed secret for his chosen. Of course, they were scared to death and some doubted, as all four Gospels tell us. But they were the only ones who saw, touched and heard the risen Christ.

I can relate to this intimacy. When Christ calls my name in baptism, when he speaks to me and the other “disciples” at my church, when he reveals himself in the “heavenly food” of communion — at all of those times I know I am his beloved. I also know that blessed secret: Jesus is risen. 

But I don’t have to wait until Pentecost for the “power from on high.”

Paul says it so well in Romans 8:11: “If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will give life to your mortal bodies also through his Spirit that dwells in you.” The power that brought Jesus from the dead lives in me now. 

You and I move from death to life to disciple through the power that raised Jesus from the dead. There is no waiting for Pentecost because we can’t wait to tell everyone that Jesus lives today in us.

This high-octane spiritual fuel propels us out of the church to proclaim that death is vanquished. Death has no dominion over us. Nothing rules over us — only our beloved Christ who has brought us from death to life to disciple to eternity. Thanks be to God!

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