Baptist World Alliance, BWA News Release

Easter Message 2014

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Made Whole through Christ

This is the day when frightened disciples, cowered behind closed doors, embraced the solidarity of misery. Sorrowing, they shared the solidarity of loss; grieving, their minds were blistered by disappointment.

 Jesus, their Lord, had been crucified. Dead, he had been buried. Disciples who had left their homes and their livelihood to follow him were left to contemplate their indescribable loss. Their sorrow defies words; their grief no pen can explain. What could this bunch of disappointed followers do but curse their fate and count the cost of their supposed error in following Jesus?

But it was Sunday! Soon, their gloom would disappear.  The pain that consumed them was to come to a glorious end.  An all-embracing joy consumed their piercing sorrow because that Sunday, when the bewildered disciples assembled, was the first Easter Day.

And today is Easter Day! Churches in the East and the West, the North and the South – Catholic and Orthodox, Protestant, Evangelical and Pentecostal – break out in celebration of the good news of the resurrection of our Lord Jesus.

Christ has trounced the enemy called death. He has vanquished his foes, seizing bright hope through the darkness of the tomb! Dying, he secures our salvation. Rising, he seals our liberation.

And his resurrection confirms that we can laugh in the evening of the darkest night. We can rejoice when fierce lions stalk us. We can find reason to celebrate even when, cursing our fate, we feel imprisoned in the den of despair.

It is Easter Day and this is what we know: even though we pass through the dark night of sorrow, morning comes. Light shines to dispel the darkness; hope springs new as our Lord gives to us the gift of abundant life.

Having overcome life’s trials and death’s darkness, Jesus breathes new life into minds brutalized by unbelief, stained by cynicism, or paralyzed by fear.

Risen with a spiritual body, Jesus renews and revitalizes bodies that are scarred by struggle, wounded by disobedience, or disfigured by wrongdoing.

It is Easter day! Jesus breathes into us bright hope that pierces the all-encompassing gloom.

And every Sunday is Easter Day all over again.  During the week, when our life is a roller coaster of mismatched experiences, we discover, through the cycle of dying and rising, the mystery of faith renewed and, by God’s grace, we are transformed by hope.

Rejoice! It’s resurrection day! Baptized into our Lord’s death and made alive through his resurrection, we are, indeed, made whole!

Neville Callam
General Secretary

The Baptist World Alliance, founded in 1905, is a fellowship of 253 conventions and unions in 130 countries and territories comprising 51 million baptized believers in 176,000 churches. For more than 100 years, the Baptist World Alliance has networked the Baptist family to impact the world for Christ with a commitment to strengthen worship, fellowship and unity; lead in mission and evangelism; respond to people in need through aid, relief, and community development; defend religious freedom, human rights, and justice; and advance theological reflection and leadership development.