Jesus died on the cross and his body was laid in a tomb sealed with a big stone. Very early in the morning on Sunday, the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene, one of the women who followed Jesus, went to the tomb. She went there to cry by Jesus’ grave. It was still dark and very quiet in the garden where the tomb was. When she came close, she saw that the big stone had been moved away. She thought someone had taken the body of Jesus. She ran quickly to find Peter and John, two of Jesus’ disciples. They ran to the tomb. When they arrived, they found that the tomb was empty. The body of Jesus wasn’t there. The grave clothes that had been wrapped around him were all folded up. The disciples marveled at this and then they went back to their homes. But Mary stayed at the tomb, crying. Suddenly she saw in the tomb two angels. “Why are you crying?” they asked her. “Because they have taken away the body of my Lord Jesus,” she said. “And I don’t know where they put him.” She turned away from the tomb, and she saw Jesus! He was standing in front of her, alive! Jesus had come alive again! He had risen from the dead! Jesus told Mary that he was going to be with God his Father, who was now the God and Father of all Jesus’ followers. Because of Jesus, he is our God and Father, too. He told her to tell the disciples that he was risen.
That night, Jesus came to the disciples. He suddenly appeared among them and said, “Peace be with you.” The disciples couldn’t believe their eyes. Was this really Jesus that stood among them? Jesus showed them the scars of the owies that were on his hands from dying on the cross. It was really him. He had died to save us from our sins and he rose again to life, just like he said he would. After staying with his disciples for a while, Jesus went up to heaven to be with God. But before he went, he said that he would come back again into our world to bring us home to God. Jesus sent his followers out to tell others how he died on the cross for them. Some of them wrote the story down so that people could read the truth about Jesus–this is in the Bible that we still read today. This isn’t just a story, though. It is completely true. It is the most important thing that has ever happened in the world.
Today is Easter Sunday. On this day we remember the morning that Jesus rose from the dead. We greet each other on this day by saying this about Jesus: we say, “He is risen!” and whoever we say it to says, “He is risen indeed!”
Dear Jesus, what an amazing Lord you are to us! Thank you once again for coming into our world and giving up your life to pay the price for our sins. We praise you because you defeated death, you rose from the dead, and you are our living King. Amen.
Activity: Our family usually has Bible time after supper. Today we will begin our day with Bible time instead. We’ll march in with bells and instruments and “wake” the children (who will be awake but aren’t allowed to get up until 7:00), and bring them out to hear how the tomb was empty on Easter morning.