CCM Classics for Easter – Matthew Ward’s updated rendition of Easter Song (2011)

April 22, 2015

Ok, you can’t get too much more “classic” in terms of CCM than Easter Song, written by Annie Herring of the Second Chapter of Acts, released on their very first album With Footnotes in 1974.  It’s one of the defining songs of the genre by one of the pioneering groups of the genre.  For those of us who remember when this song and album came out, it seems impossible that the song is now more than 40 years old!

Vocalist extraordinaire Matthew Ward, along with his sisters Annie and Nellie comprised the Second Chapter of Acts, and although the group stopped performing more than 20 years ago, Matthew has continued to produce some solo albums.   In 2011 he recorded a new arrangement of Easter Song.  I only discovered it mid-Eastertide last year, and I’m so enjoying having his fresh update of an Easter classic in my playlist this entire Easter season. This song doesn’t get old…!

Here’s what Matthew wrote on his website as the reason for releasing a new version of this classic:

February 15th  2011 marked my 40th anniversary in music. I wanted to do something special for this momentous occasion, so I recorded a new rendition of “Easter Song” one of the most popular tunes my sister (Annie Herring) ever wrote, it’s available now …  He has risen!!!!

In my opinion no one has matched Matthew’s voice in the past 40 years of CCM!

Matthew’s updated version of Easter Song is available at iTunes and elsewhere.

Here’s Matthew performing Easter Song in the Colorado Mountains.  It’s EXCELLENT.  Crank up the volume and sing along loudly in joyous praise of our Risen Lord!


Easter Quotes – Mark D. Roberts: Without the Resurrection, An Easter Postscript

April 22, 2015

During the fourteen days prior to Easter, I was reflecting on the Stations of the Cross in preparation for a deeper experience of the reality of Jesus’ death, and therefore a greater celebration of his resurrection. Today, on the Monday after Easter, I want to add an Easter postscript.

Without the resurrection, the cross of Jesus really wouldn’t matter much.

Without the resurrection, we’d never have known about Jesus’ prayer on the Mount of Olives, where he submitted to the will of his Heavenly Father.

Without the resurrection, Judas’ betrayal of Jesus would have been long forgotten.

Without the resurrection, the Sanhedrin who condemned Jesus would have been seen as largely correct in their estimation of him as a blasphemer who needed to be silenced.

Without the resurrection, Peter’s denial of Jesus might seem like a judicious way to preserve his own life.

Without the resurrection, we’d probably never have heard the name of Pontius Pilate, unless we happened to take a class in Jewish history in the Roman Period.

Without the resurrection, the fact that Jesus was scourged and crowned with thorns would seem to be a sad but fitting end to one who pretended to usher in the kingdom of God.

Without the resurrection, Jesus would have been one more nameless individual who took up his cross on the way to dying a cruel death.

Without the resurrection, Simon of Cyrene would have disappeared into the dust of history.

Without the resurrection, the women who mourned for Jesus would have continued to mourn for a long, long time . . . not for only two days.

Without the resurrection, most of us would know very little about crucifixion, unless we had seen the movie Spartacus. (Of course there would be no Passion of the Christ film.)

Without the resurrection, the promise of Jesus to the thief, that he would join Jesus in Paradise, would seem like a bad, sad joke.

Without the resurrection, the presence of Jesus’ mother at the cross would be painful in the extreme, without a hint of meaning or hope.

Without the resurrection, the cross would be largely forgotten, and it would not appear on millions of buildings or around millions of necks.

Without the resurrection, the tomb would have been the final resting place of Jesus, until his body was exhumed so his bones could be placed in a ossuary (box for bones).

Without the resurrection, there would be no Stations of the Cross.

Without the resurrection, there would be no Christian church.

Without the resurrection, there would be no assurance of salvation.

Without the resurrection, there would be no reason to hope.

Without the resurrection, there would be only death.

From a 2011 Easter Devotional by Presybterian Pastor Mark D. Roberts


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