You Are Looking for Jesus

You Are Looking for Jesus

Easter Sunday 2024, Year B

Easter Sunday is here. Easter Sunday comes with a lot of pressure—the pressure to bring our very best, to adorn the sanctuary in flowers and signs of new life, to preach an amazing sermon declaring the good news of the Resurrection, to sing our hearts out with songs of joy and new life.

Fellowship – Snacks or a Meal (10 minutes with snacks; longer, obviously, if there is a meal).

Gathering Time (5-10 minutes). In pairs or groups of three, have participants share, “What is your favorite memory of Easter Sunday?”

Group Dialogue (Approximately 30 minutes). Read Mark 16:1-8.

  • Who were the women mentioned in Mark 16:1, and why did they go to the tomb? [Mary Magdalene; Mary, the mother of James; and Salome (Mark 16:1). They went to the tomb to anoint Jesus' body with spices.]
  • Why did the young man inside the tomb say Jesus was not there? [Because he had been raised (Mark 16:6c).] How would you have reacted if you had heard that?
  • Why do you think the young man inside the tomb mentioned Peter in Mark 16:7? [Perhaps so Peter would know Jesus' resurrection, considering Peter's denial of Jesus during the crucifixion events.]

The Easter Preaching Notes mentioned:

Then Mark says an odd thing. He says they (the women) ran. In terror and amazement, they ran. And they said nothing. To anyone. The end. Most scholars agree this is Mark’s original ending. Silence, fear, and awe. And running away. The early church didn’t like that ending, so it gave us a more comfortable certainty in the verses that follow. But why would Mark do such a thing? Leave the story so unfinished? Because yours is unfinished too. Think about it. Mark is telling the story to people who knew that Jesus was alive, yet he says they told no one. How did the word get out? How did the word get past the stone of their fear? He rolled away the stone. Even the stone of our inadequacy. Their silence wasn’t the final word. God’s hope was the final word.

  • What are your thoughts on the comment above?
  • In what ways does the resurrection of Jesus impact our faith today? How does the resurrection message provide hope and assurance in the face of fear and uncertainty? How might you live in light of the resurrection?

Prayer (10 minutes). Share prayer requests and respond appropriately.

Sending Forth (2 minutes). End with the following prayer, a similar prayer, or the Lord’s Prayer:

Loving God, we thank You for the incredible hope we find in the resurrection of Your Son, Jesus Christ. As we leave this space, empower us to live as witnesses of this transformative message. Amen.

Rev. Motoe Yamada Foor, Director of Adult Discipleship, served in local churches for twenty years. She has a wealth of experience at a variety of organizational levels of The United Methodist Church as well as in ecumenical organizations such as the World Council of Churches (WCC). She also enjoys serving as a coach to help people and churches grow.

In This Series...

Easter Sunday, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes


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In This Series...

Easter Sunday, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes