Around the Word in 365 Days, by Linda Sommer

The Greatest Love Story

Matthew 28:1-20 This is the day men give candy and roses to their wives or sweethearts. For me it usually means a dinner out or a weekend away. This day of celebration is in honor of the love between a man and a woman. It is interesting that the symbol of this day is a heart and the colors used to decorate are red and white. The greatest love story ever told also involves the heart and the colors red and white. On the cross Jesus died because the weight of our sin broke His heart, but because of His sacrifice, we now can have our broken hearts mended. The red blood of Jesus poured upon the ground and was offered as an atonement for all sins, which satisfied God's requirements for a penalty for sin. Jesus, who knew no sin, became sin for us that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him. Though our sins were as scarlet, they became white as snow. On that day over two thousand years ago, the greatest love story was revealed to mankind. This story continues to unfold as we look forward to the day that we will sit at the table of the lover of our souls. There will be a marriage of the Bridegroom (Jesus) with the bride (the church), and the celebration will continue for all eternity.

In this passage today we see a portion of this great love story. First Mary Magdalene and Mary discover the empty tomb at dawn on the first day of the week. These women loved Jesus as both mother and friend, but soon this love would deepen into a supernatural love that would far exceed any human love. God was in Christ Jesus reconciling the world to Himself. God's love is inexpressible, but God's love found expression through Jesus Christ. The height of God's love is His grace, the depth of God's love is His forgiveness, the length of God's love is His mercy, and the width of God's love is His truth. All these four aspects of God's love were fully expressed in Jesus Christ, who is the express image of the invisible Father. When the angel appeared to the two Marys, they were first fearful. But then, when they heard the message, "He is not here, for He is risen, as He said," they were filled with great joy and ran to tell the disciples. This story of God's love expressed through the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ had to be shared with others.

Whenever we experience a loving act in our lives, we like to share it with others. On this special dawn, the two Marys could not wait to tell their friends. Their response to this great news should be our response today. Later Jesus spoke to His disciples and said, "All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world" (Matt. 28:18-20, KJV).

Is there someone you need to tell the greatest love story to today?

READ: Exodus 37:1-38:31; Matthew 28:1-20; Psalm 34:11-22; Proverbs 9:9-10

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