Yesterday President Trump laid out his plan. Back to packed houses of worship on Easter, despite the Coronavirus.
Because Easter is very special and means a lot to him personally, and to our country as a whole. His words paraphrased a bit.
Others will parse the medical implications of the President’s words yesterday. The medical scientists understand how to do the math far better than I ever could. Or the President ever would, for that matter.
My own reaction is to parse the theological implications of such a wished for Easter re-opening. And while I’m quite confident the President’s underlying message yesterday was that going to church Easter Sunday will mean going to work Easter Monday and reviving the economy and resurrecting his re-election hopes this November, I say “so what?” And by those words my own underlying message today is “so what does Easter Re-Opening mean for our world?” Forget about America, and about Trump, and about the Wall St. economy and the jobless numbers for use in future campaign rhetoric. What does Easter Re-Opening mean for our world?
I believe it means this: that God has invited us to lay down our own bodies on earth, in all humility……………… that he might then raise up our souls in heaven, in all exaltation.
Those who proclaim going to heaven without having to first die on earth are liars. They are false prophets. Or false Christs. They point to Easter but not Good Friday. To resurrection but not crucifixion. To reward but not sacrifice. To exaltation but not humility. To restoration but not repentance. To opening up what we've never really closed up.
My prayer these days is not only for the medical scientists and health professionals as they go about their miracles of healing. It is also for Christians who are going out unprotected into a world of this theological pandemic that sickens our souls with false hopes. Better that we tune out our President and turn on our Repentance in this season. For only as we close up our own selfish pride, greed, and sense of personal invincibility can God’s own Easter Re-Opening occur for our world of humanity.