Easter Vigil: You Have Only to Keep Still

For a true Easter Vigil service a great many Bible passages are suggested and appointed to lead us up to the glorious drama of the Resurrection.

 

Besides the Resurrection proclamation, the one required and appointed text is Exodus 14:10-31, about the miraculous redemption of the Hebrew people from bondage in Egypt.

 

Out of that reading, the verses that perhaps blast out like a shofar for us during this epidemic are these:

13 But Moses said to the people, “Do not be afraid, stand firm, and see the deliverance that the Lord will accomplish for you today; for the Egyptians whom you see today you shall never see again. 14 The Lord will fight for you, and you have only to keep still.”

 

I mention “shofar” because that is the rams horn Jews blow out when they celebrate the Lord’s mighty acts of redemption. And, if you are Christian or Moslem or none-of-the-above, this is certainly a time for coming together and soaking up the great things that we can learn from and share with all our brothers and sisters in the world.

 

I want especially to highlight the last sentence of those verses: “The LORD will fight for you, and you have only to keep still.”

 

We all, naturally, want to do things—keep busy for our selves, our jobs, and for the common good. But now is the time when, for most of us, keeping still and keeping indoors, is the most important thing. Yes, it is also, perhaps, the most difficult thing. But during Easter Vigil time, we can blow a ram’s horn, even if it is in the form of a pent-up “Alleluia,” and remember that the LORD is fighting for us all, and we only have to keep still.

 

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About John

John is a retired pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America who has served congregations for over 40 years, including in rural, suburban, campus ministry and urban settings. His love of Border Collie sheepdogs has been fortified by his many friendships with shepherds all around the world. Nothing he has ever or will ever accomplish is as significant as the patience God, his wife and his friends have shown in putting up with his deficiencies.
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