Acts 2:24-25 – But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him. David said about him: “‘I saw the Lord always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.

 

It is important to remember that Pentecost is actually the culmination of the Easter festival. In Luke’s narrative one occurs at the end of the gospel – Easter – and one at the beginning of Acts – Pentecost. But in no way does he intend us to separate them. Pentecost makes good on the Easter story, and no more so than here in Peter’s sermon. By the power of the Spirit not only are we able to live a resurrection life, we are also empowered to proclaim the resurrection: to announce the death of death itself. Indeed, such is the vitality of God, his aliveness, that it was simply impossible for death to have its hold on Jesus. He died to be sure. There is no doubt about that. By his sacrifice all our sins have been forgiven. By God’s set plan and foreknowledge he was crucified. But whatever the pangs of death are, they were loosed in the case of the Messiah, to give birth to life. Everything hinges on this.

 

Prayer: Death, where is your victory, where is your sting? Thanks be to you, O God, you give us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.