Zion Lutheran Church - Easter Altar

This article by Rev. Eric Brown originally appeared on the Higher Things Dare to Be Lutheran website.

On the first day of the week, when we were gathered together to break bread... - Acts 20:7

From the early days of the church we've worshiped on Sunday morning. Please note that I'm not saying that you can't go to a Saturday night service or anything like that - but very early on in church history the standard became to gather together on Sunday morning and celebrate the Lord's Supper. There's a very good and simple reason for this.

You see, there's a new most important event in the history of the world. In the days of the Old Testament, the people of God were called to ponder the Sabbath, the day of rest that God Himself took in creation. That day that even pointed forward to the rest Christ would take in the tomb on Holy Saturday. And that is a mighty, wondrous thing to ponder. That was an important day!

Easter trumps it, though. Seriously...the resurrection tops everything. There is nothing in the world that is bigger or more amazing or astonishing than the reality that Christ Jesus rose from the dead. It stops everything else in its tracks. It is the jaw-dropping moment of the entire history of the world. God became Man, was dead, but then, He rose. And until the Last Day, there's nothing bigger or more wondrous than that!

And so, when we pause now from our busy lives (as is good) to hear the Word of God, to receive His Supper, we generally have done it on Sunday morning, mirroring and echoing that great Sunday morning of the first Easter.

And I say first, because in reality, every Sunday (and every Saturday night or Monday night, or Wednesday noon, or whatever time your congregation might hold the Divine Service) is in reality a celebration of Easter. Every time we are gathered to worship, we are gathered to receive the forgiveness that our risen Lord and Savior gives us. It's never worship without or apart from Easter. We never show up wondering, "Hmmm, I wonder if there will be forgiveness today. What if Jesus lost and Satan won--maybe we'll hear that today." By no means! Whenever we are called to gather together in His House, Jesus proclaims the fruits of His death and resurrection for us. Indeed, as often as we eat this bread and drink this cup, we proclaim His death until He comes, until He comes again, because He is risen, lives and reigns to all eternity, and shall come again! Come quickly, Lord Jesus!

Eric Brown serves as pastor at Trinity Lutheran Church, Herscher, Illinois.