Easter brings yellow and white daffodils, crocus flowers peeking through the ground, bright-colored tulips, baby birds chirping from nests, meaningful worship services throughout the month, special greetings, and more. A purple sash draped over a cross can be seen at churches and in front yards. The cross reminds us of the importance and meaning of Easter. Perhaps choosing a special outfit to wear to church is on the list of Easter activities. Participating in Easter egg hunts is another way families and friends gather to celebrate. No matter what your tradition, there seems to be a universal saying during Easter. One of the most often heard phrases is ‘He is Risen. He is Risen Indeed!’ Have you heard those words? Have you seen garden flags, posters, and t-shirts with those words? What is someone truly sharing when they say, ‘He is Risen. He is Risen Indeed!’ And are those words found in the Bible? This Easter, when you hear or read those words, pause and think about the meaning of Easter and the resurrection of Christ.
What Does ‘He Is Risen Indeed’ Mean?
Have you attended a church service and heard the words ‘He Is Risen. He Is Risen Indeed’? Maybe you have said those words to friends, family, and strangers. Maybe you have jotted those words on a card to a friend. When the words, ‘He Is Risen’ are spoken, they are often echoed by another person saying, ‘He Is Risen Indeed.’ A smile, a nod of the head, a heartfelt action of acknowledging that our savior is risen are elements of sharing the love of Christ. Scripture tells us that Jesus died and was buried and on the third day, He rose from the grave (1 Cor. 15:4). Sharing these words reminds us of the sacrifice Christ made. He conquered death. He lives so that we may have eternal life. Jesus did not stay in the tomb. He rose from the dead so that all who believe may have everlasting life.
‘He Is Risen Indeed’ are powerful words.
Why Do We Say ‘He Is Risen Indeed’ on Easter?
Easter Sunday is the day we celebrate the resurrection of Christ. Jesus was crucified on the cross, died for our sins, and was buried in the tomb. On the third day, He conquered death. He rose from the dead. Scripture shows that Jesus revealed Himself to two of the disciples on the road to Emmaus. The news was shared with the other eleven. Sharing a greeting of ‘He Is Risen Indeed’ reminds us that Jesus did not die. He lives. He Is Risen! Hallelujah!
Easter is celebrated as we remember the sacrifice made on our behalf. As we busy ourselves with activities surrounding Easter, let us pause and acknowledge the depth of what Jesus experienced and how God gave His Son so we may be saved.
What Is the Origin of He Is Risen Indeed?
There are varying opinions on the origin of ‘He Is Risen Indeed.’ Some scholars state the saying comes from Mary Magdalene, when she said, “Christ is risen.” Others say the greeting was started when the disciples were gathered and told ‘The Lord has risen indeed and has appeared to Simon!” (Luke 24:33). However the words were shared, the news was and is forever important and vital to believers. The heartfelt emotions and truth are evident when we pause and remember His love for us. Christ is risen from the grave.
What Does the Bible Say about This?
Scripture in the New Testament shares verse after verse about Christ rising from the dead. The Bible tells us that Jesus died for our sins. God loves us with more love than we can imagine. We are created by God and we are His children. As people learned about the resurrection of Christ, some were shocked and wondered at the news. Others were comforted by the words. Jesus reassured them (Mark 16:5-7). In Luke 24:6-7, we are reminded that Jesus told the people how the Son of Man would be crucified and on the third day, He would rise again. Imagine how you would feel if you lived during that time and someone told you the news? Would you understand? Would you believe what was being shared? The shock for some people and the reassurance for others could be felt throughout communities. The news about the crucifixion of Jesus, the death and burial of Jesus, and His resurrection are found in various scriptures in the Bible. Taking time to read the Word of God helps us to understand the importance of the sacrifice and love of God. The Bible shares the emotions of friends and family who cared deeply for Jesus and what happened to Him. Their grief, sadness, and despair were turned into joy as the news of His resurrection was shared and believed.
Easter is not just one day. Easter begins with Palm Sunday and remembering how palm branches were placed in the path of Jesus as he entered Jerusalem riding a colt (Matthew 21:1-9). Maundy Thursday reminds us of the Last Supper when Jesus washed the feet of His disciples. Maundy Thursday also reminds us of the command Jesus gave (John 13:34). We are called to love one another.
Good Friday is a day of remembrance as we think about the day Jesus willingly suffered and died on the cross for our sins.
Easter Sunday is the day we remember and celebrate His resurrection. Jesus lives. He Is Risen. He Is Risen Indeed.
Our family has attended Easter Sunrise services over the years. A few mornings were bitter cold, and we had to wear coats, hats, gloves, and cover with blankets. Other times, we sat on the beach in warmer climates, with sand between our toes. We watched the sunrise over the ocean while listening to waves crashing against the shore as Scripture was read. Those pounding waves helped us think of the harshness of the time of the death of Jesus.
Also, we worshipped in a forest, sitting in the dark, and pausing as the sun began to streak through swaying pine tree branches. That reminded us of the light of the world that came when Jesus rose from the tomb.
Easter is not only one day. When we say ‘He Is Risen. He Is Risen Indeed,” we are acknowledging the death and resurrection of our Savior.
An Easter Prayer
Father, thank You for the love and mercy that only You can provide. You gave Your Son Jesus to be sacrificed for our sins, so that we may have life eternal with You. Father, we know that our words and actions don’t cause You to love us. We are yours and are loved because we are children of God. Thank You for forgiving our sins. Thank You that we can go to You at any moment and know You are listening. The love You have for us never changes, never ceases. When we stray, You search for us. When we return, You welcome us with open arms. Help us to pause and remember the love You give.
May we celebrate Easter and share the good news of the gospel with everyone.
He Is Risen. He Is Risen Indeed. Hallelujah!
In the name of Your Son Jesus. Amen.
Photo credit: ©GettyImages/Arthit Longwilai
Award-winning author Melissa Henderson writes inspirational messages sometimes laced with a bit of humor. With stories in books, magazines, devotionals, and more, Melissa hopes to encourage readers. Melissa is the author of Licky the Lizard and Grumpy the Gator. Her passions are helping in the community and church. Melissa is an Elder, Deacon, and Stephen Minister. Follow Melissa on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and at http://www.melissaghenderson.