The way the members of the early church would greet each other was with “Christ is risen.” And the reply would be “He is risen indeed.” What a strange greeting. I think there are very few places the same type of phrase is used to say hello these days. And I can only think of one for sure… “Red Socks Rule.” and its’ counterpart, “Don’t you know it!” (I make no personal statement about any sports team here, this is just what people say.)
It must be that people need to be united by something… a team, a movie, a song, a reason. The thing that kept the early church together was the death & resurrection of Jesus. The death alone did it at first – the disciples were huddled in a corner of an upstairs apartment the day after. The resurrection, ironically, created confusion in the group. People were skeptical or manic or still in shock from the weekend’s events. The individual events are big. But together, the events verify the whole life of Christ. And by doing that, they also validate the early church members.
So for the church to greet each other in such a strange way was really a way of saying ‘this really is for real!’ and the reply, ‘Can you believe it?!?!’