Don’t know about you, but sometimes I go to gathered worship in a mechanical state of mind (meaning – I’m there but my brain goes to other things while on the outside I do what I’m supposed to do):
“turn to hymn number…let’s pray…while the instruments play let’s greet…turn in your Bibles to…our closing song is…nice to see you brother…”
I do look forward to Sundays, but we humans are a distracted species. Unlike birds who set their sights to fly from point A to point B or cougars who keep a routine watch on the boundaries of their mountain domain we humans have distractions to pursue. I am of a distracted species. We do love our distractions, but distraction hinders worship.
Then I saw this from George Ladd (New Testament scholar from a past era). Seeing the reality of the Resurrection has helped to shove me outta my distraction rut.
“This has led us to designate Jesus’ resurrection as an eschatological event. It is an anticipation of the end. To speak crudely, it is a piece of eschatology split off from the end and planted in history. The end has begun; the future is present.”
George Eldon Ladd, I Believe in the Resurrection (Grand Rapids, 1975), page 152.
So the Resurrection of Jesus is not just a true event in the past. It is the future pushing, forcing, pressing its way into the present. Cool. The Gospel is eschatological as much as it is historical.
We worship on Sundays because Christ arose. That’s commemoration.
And now I see we worship on Sundays because Christ has arrived from the future to perform the coming resurrection in our present. That’s anticipation.
How good is that?! How could Sunday worship ever be the same again after seeing this? That’s celebration.