A sermon preached at Kowloon Union Church on Sunday 31 March 2013 by
the Rev. Phyllis Wong. The scripture readings that day were Isaiah
65:17-25 and Luke 24:1-12.
you, sisters and brothers from One Body in Christ, for sharing with us this
is a special time when we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus who died on the
year, our Easter drama does not focus on the traditional narrative of the empty
tomb in Jesus’ resurrection story. It tried to share the vision of a new heaven
and earth taken from Isaiah instead.
this new heaven and earth, people’s basic needs are met. They are given houses
to live, food to eat. People are given fair share for their labour. Children
and old people, the lowly of the society are well protected and taken care of. Animals
and human beings live together in harmony. Hierarchical relationship is
challenged and reformulated as it is shared in the vision from Isaiah 65 that
we heard this morning.
the procession, we brought forth five items, the first was a bowl of fruits – this
represents the source of life and God’s provision to his people to satisfy
their basic needs. With a grateful heart, people of God returns to God.
animal toys presented were used to show the harmonious and restored
relationship of all creatures.
other three symbols we took this morning also indicated the true meaning of
Easter as well.
Cross with lilies – cross is a symbol of pain and suffering. It is a symbol of
shame and humiliation. The lilies symbolized that Jesus’ suffering and pain is
transformed into hope, his death is transformed into new life through
–The stone at the entrance of the tomb was rolled out. An empty tomb signifies
liberation -- people of God are no more enslaved by the power of death and
darkness, but are set free from oppression and unjust treatment.
last item, a Jug of Water – water is a symbol for tears. In Jesus’ pain, he
takes away the tears of those who suffer. Because Jesus overcomes the power of
the death and is risen, the tears is then transformed from pain to joy.
the drama prepared by One Body In Christ this morning, I noticed one
interesting arrangement. The savior, who represents Jesus, goes to give food to
the laborer, love and comforts to the weeping woman, friendship to the little
rabbit and set free the man who was kept in a prison of isolation and
suppression, is a woman. Macy has taken up this role.
Christ, redeemer of the world was a man in history. But interestingly:
son of God, savior of humanity and the world was born by a woman.
son of God, savior of humanity and the world, whose resurrection was witnessed
by women first. (Luke 24:1-12)
Jesus’ time, women did not have high status as the society was still a male
dominated society. But God chose women to become his first partner to fulfill
his salvation plan.
gives to people, especially to those who regard themselves as less important,
less capable, less valuable and worthy of love, a new way to look at
came to the world to save everyone. His death and resurrection is for all.
Everyone is embraced by the love of God. We are all equal.
this special time of Easter, we keep remembering the death and resurrection of
Jesus. But we do not just remember the old details, but to share new insights
and fresh perspectives. It thus enables us to remember what a challenge it
still is to look death in the face and trust that ‘Jesus is risen’.
sisters and brothers, what is it in Easter’s narrative that you most remember
and that you most trust? What is it in Easter’s narrative that would give you
new life and new possibilities?
God of new life,
may your resurrection,
and your breathing again,
anchor us in
hope once more.
Dare our minds
to dream again,
beyond what this world offers
renewed and reborn.
God of new possibilities,
faith to believe that
mysteries beyond our knowing.
to trust ourselves as we trust in you.
Empower us to
act with courage as in you,
May the new
heaven and new earth that brings
dwells in us
and this world.
Thank you Lord, for the power of life and loving