1. The gospel of Jesus’ coming out of death and the tomb alive so that we might be restored to our identity as God’s children establishes the most enduring reality there is.
  2. Our Advent anticipation of the coming of the Savior to liberate us from sin and its wage of death, from the condemnation of God’s Law and the wrath of a loving heavenly Father, is indeed a daring and defiant stance.
  3. Each day gives us occasion to die to our sinful identities of all kinds and to live out a life in Christ’s footsteps as children of God.
  4. Golgotha is the point where not only Mary and John’s family life assumed a new character, but it is the point of orientation for all human community that uses the cross to straighten out the lives of individuals turned in upon themselves.
  5. The cross does not remain on a hill far away. It pursues us into the valleys, the ravines, the crevices in which we get trapped as we wander in search of a fixed point for our lives.
  6. The Easter season is designed to cultivate our resurrection thinking throughout the year. When God looks at us each day, He sees us through the lens of Christ’s resurrection. We should look at our lives the same way.
  7. The devil is to be taken seriously, but we should also not give him more credit or more power than he has after being defanged by Christ’s resurrection.
  8. Can we fully experience the joy of the Festival of the Resurrection if we do not seriously stare boldly into the sad state of our own faithlessness to Him who promises to be faithful even when we are not?
  9. Lenten meditation is the one time Luther might advise us to be turning in on ourselves--and taking a cold, honest glance. For only in the shadow of the Cross can we look honsetly into the cause of the death of the man from Nazareth, the second person of the Trinity.