Guy R. Brewer, D. Min, Ph. D Emeritus Professor of Pastoral Theology
Anderson University School of Theology and Christian Ministry
For the second year in a row, we are locked down for Easter Sunday
. Some churches are holding in person Easter services, but attending them is risky business. Of all the restrictions that have come with the COVID pandemic, being locked out on Easter bothers me the most. He is risen . . . but he’s wearing a mask and socially distancing from you.
How can we celebrate Christ’s resurrection in a lockdown? That question goes all the way back to the first Easter Sunday. Jesus’ disciples are hunkered down behind locked doors. They are afraid and full of anxiety about what comes next. “On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear . . . Jesus came and stood among them” (John 20:19). Funny how history repeats itself.
In the midst of fear and worry, the Risen LORD utters these words to his friends: “Peace be with you!” He does not buy into the mood of their moment. Locked doors are no barrier to him. The LORD is not wearing a mask or distancing himself from those who betrayed him. Instead, he brings peace in the midst of terrible circumstances. As a matter of fact, Jesus repeats himself. “Peace be with you!” I think of that second blessing of peace as being for us. May you know it on this Easter.