Stations of the Resurrection – Introduction

Stations of the Resurrection – Introduction

Lift High the Tomb

On Celebrating Easter as the Death/Resurrection of Jesus

The signature event of the Christian Faith has been seen since the beginning as a one-act drama with two scenes: The Death/Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Either scene is incomplete without the other. The cross remains a simple method of execution without the victoriously empty tomb. And the empty tomb is merely an unused grave had not Jesus hung dead on the cross.

Sheri and I have wondered if perhaps our “Nothing But the Cross” focus has resulted in an unhealthy neglect of the Resurrection. We believe there is a good reason why the earliest Christians chose Sunday as the Day of the Lord, and not Friday. For centuries, though, the Passion of Christ has been meditated upon effectively and concretely through the 14 Stations of the Cross. So it makes sense to us that believers should have at hand a parallel series of meditations on the scripture events surrounding the Resurrection.

After coming up with this idea of meditations on the Resurrection, we looked into it a little, and discovered this history… In 1988 a Vatican priest decided it was high time to rediscover the ancient church tradition of meditating on the various scenes before, during and after the Resurrection. There has been a long-held knowledge that all the biblical Resurrection scenes found in the gospels are actually scratched and painted into the ancient Roman catacomb walls of St. Callistus, but apparently there hasn’t been much interest in reviving an organized meditation since those early days. The time has come, the priest thought, to once again explore more fully the paschal mystery, Christ’s Death/Resurrection. His series of meditations was called Via Lucis, the Way of Light, and his version is indeed 14 stations in order to be seen as parallel in number to the long valued and practiced Stations of the Cross, thus acknowledging the two sides of the Easter coin.

Since the four gospel witnesses all seemed to experience these events somewhat differently, the Church has no fixed order of the 14 Resurrection events, with no mandatory set of gospel scenes. The main intent is to plummet deeper into the bottomless sea of Easter, to intentionally and passionately identify with and embrace the Risen Christ after the Crucified Lord. So, we pieced together an order of selected scenes that seemed logical and helpful to us after consulting various blended narratives and other works of biblical scholars. We believe that our version has a flow that makes sense to us, but of course a precise, historical chronology is simply not possible.

We invite you to engage with each Station and meditation in any way that is fruitful for you, whatever will help you somehow to live inside of the Resurrection with Christ’s disciples. Any manner of study or discussion is good and proper… private devotions, small group study, large group discussions, in church, at home, wherever. Remember to take your time. These Stations are not intended to be ruminated upon while multi-tasking through your day.

Each of our 14 Stations of the Resurrection will include the relevant gospel passage as the starting point. Alongside each Station is a recommended visual aid, a work of art that we hope will deepen the meditation. Just look it up on Google Images. Also included at these Stations are quotes from various authors to help us reflect on the events from perhaps unexpected angles. Finally, at the end of each Station, is a passage from an epistle that will reinforce a powerful and wonderful truth… The historical Resurrection of 2,000 years ago and the future general resurrection of the dead are indeed true. But also real is our current in-between time, during which the Resurrection is taking place right now in you and me, and is in fact the very source of our transformation in newness of life as we live in Christ daily. Ponder anew the Resurrection, past, present and future.

Steven and Sheridan Larson