Bishop’s Easter Message 2019

Greetings in the most precious name of Jesus our risen and living Lord and Saviour.

These days it is easy for us to drift through Holy Week without thinking too much about what it was like for Jesus’ disciples during the actual events more than 2,000 years ago. We know that after the agony of Good Friday comes the resurrection joy of Easter Day. However, the disciples of Jesus did not, and so experienced great shock, pain and uncertainty when He was arrested, crucified and then buried in the garden tomb.

Many of us today experience challenges and difficulties in life which fill us with worry and fear. It may be a personal struggle, a family problem, an issue at work or perhaps the uncertain direction of our nation which burdens us with a sense of uneasiness or even trepidation.

But we should take courage from the words of 1 Peter 1:3: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” In rising from the dead, Jesus defeated death and the devil, thus giving us a living hope which previously humanity did not have. This hope is that of the salvation of our souls through faith (1 Pet. 1:9), even though for now we are “grieved by various trials” (1 Pet. 1:6).

Hence, if we are feeling troubled or afraid like the disciples were on Good Friday, we must remember Jesus’s mighty resurrection. In the words of the famous hymn, “Because He lives, I can face tomorrow; because He lives, all fear is gone.”

Yet it is not enough for us to simply experience God’s peace that comes through Jesus’s victory for ourselves. When Peter preached at Cornelius’ house, after proclaiming that Jesus rose from the dead and appeared to His disciples, he immediately said: Jesus “commanded us to preach to the people and to testify that he is the one appointed by God to be judge of the living and the dead” (Acts 10:42). As our Diocese has entered a Decade of Evangelism and Discipleship (2018-2028), each of us should pray that God will show us how we are to preach His Gospel and make disciples. By obeying Jesus’ Great Commission, we will truly experience the power of his resurrection.

I wish to take this opportunity to wish all of you a HAPPY & BLESSED EASTER. May you be filled with God’s grace, mercy and peace during this season of joy.

The Rt Revd Datuk Melter Jiki Tais