The next day, the one after Preparation Day, the chief priests and the Pharisees went to Pilate. “Sir,” they said, “we remember that while he was still alive that deceiver said, ‘After three days I will rise again.’ So give the order for the tomb to be made secure until the third day. Otherwise, his disciples may come and steal the body and tell the people that he has been raised from the dead. This last deception will be worse than the first.” —Matthew 27:62-64

The religious leaders remembered that Jesus said He would rise from the dead after three days. They did not believe this, but thought that the disciples would come and try to take the body in the night to make it look like He rose from the dead. This, of course, is what they bribed the soldiers to say after Jesus did indeed rise from the dead and the soldiers were there to witness, from their perspective, the terrifying event (Matthew 28:11-15, 2-4).

Yesterday I was talking with a man who said “I taught Sunday School years ago… I am now an atheist.” I mentioned a couple things to him. First I asked him if he had all information about everything everywhere right at this present time. He responded, “No.” So I said that because he doesn’t have all information about everything everywhere right at this present time then there is the possibility that God does exist and he just doesn’t accept that possibility. There was silence. We talked about a few other points but then I asked how is it possible for a person to truly believe in Jesus not to truly believe in Him anymore? It is probably because that person really did not believe in the first place because if you truly believe in Jesus there is no way you will come to a place of not believing. A person that said they once believe but now do not is a person that never truly understood and believed in the first place…

People can deny and disbelieve that fact that Jesus did rise from the dead (Romans 1:4), but that does not negate the truth that He did. Nor does that deter those who have truly called on His Name from sharing this truth. I was sitting around a table with 8 men at the NH State Prison last night and before we parted company we agreed to pray each morning “Lord, who would You have me encourage toward You today.” I am looking forward to meeting with these men next week to hear the stories of how our Lord Jesus answered those prayers.

Dear brothers and sisters our hope is in the risen Jesus, our Savior and King. Will you pray that prayer with me right now? “Lord Jesus, who would You have me encourage today.” If you have prayed that prayer and are sensitive to those around you today then you will have a story at the end of the day as to how He answered.

Yes, Dear Father, please work in and through me to encourage someone toward Jesus today. May this be so in the power of Your Holy Spirit and in the authority of Jesus. So be it!

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