THOUGHTS ON EASTER
Easter is a word that means nothing to some people, and to others, it is a term that generates excitement. For those to whom Easter is a word in the dictionary, it is a time to sleep, mow the lawn, have fun at the park with friends, or pursue their favorite pasttime.
On Easter, Christians celebrate a special occasion: Christ rose from the dead. This is what stands out among all religions and faiths.
Easter is the other bookend of Jesus’ Virgin Birth. Easter backs up Jesus’ claim to be God in the flesh. Through Jesus’ death we are able to have a personal God.
Jesus came to earth for a special purpose. He was focused on this particular mission throughout His life. He came to do a work for God. God needed someone who would live life with His agenda in mind. Jesus alone could fulfill this need. God had to have someone who would embody Himself and show people what God is like and what God does. Jesus boldly demonstrated in words and deeds the magnificence of who God is.
The culmination of Jesus’ life was His death. In Jesus’ death, He satisfied the wrath of God because He lived His life without breaking any of God’s commands. Only God could have accomplished this. Jesus’ humanity came into play because God needed a human to help humans have direct access to God by building a bridge to span the distance between God and man. As Paul puts it in Ephesians 1:6, “To the praise of the glory of His grace, wherein He hath made us accepted in the Beloved.”
There are hundreds of prophecies that were fulfilled as Jesus was born, lived on earth, died and rose from the dead. For Jesus’ resurrection in particular, we have Psalm 16:10, “For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.” Further, Jesus referred to Jonah, calling him a sign. The Pharisees and Sadducees wanted a sign from heaven to authenticate Jesus’ work (Matthew 16:4). He told them in Luke 11:30, “This is an evil generation: they seek a sign; and there shall no sign be given it, but the sign of Jonah the prophet. For as Jonah was a sign unto the Ninevites, so shall also the Son of man be to this generation.”
Where does this lead us? If ever there was a cause to embrace, Christianity is it. Why? God helps people by getting to the core of their problem; sin, a falling short of perfect obedience to God’s commands. Our efforts to do good for others will not meet God’s standard of perfect. After accepting Jesus’ work on the cross on our behalf, we become instantly acceptable in God’s eyes. Then God begins the slow, painstaking work of transformation from sinner to saint in everyday living. As changes in our behavior continue, we begin to take an interest in others and the things of God. This is unique to Christianity, Where God changes people by installing in them His own character. The difference is God is directing rather than us. This changes the equation, raising us from me-centered to God-centered. This gives us a different outlook on life. Paul said in 2 Corinthians 5:17, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”
God is still at work. In Easter God speaks, “Since we have now bridged the gap between God and man (Jesus’ death on the cross), now let’s get on with the program.” God has chosen to use humans to do His work on earth. We take instructions from God. In Psalm 32:8-9 David says of God, “I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye. Be ye not as the horse, or as the mule, which have no understanding: whose mouth must be held in with bit and bridle, lest they come near unto thee.”
God wants to do His work with our cooperation. Don’t be like me, who stalled ten years after He asked me to let Him have my will. I had to learn that giving my will away to God was beneficial to me, not detrimental. I didn’t lose in that transaction when I finally said, “Yes!”
Do you need a tune-up? Let God clean out your carburetor. Jesus is explosive to our culture when we let Him be in charge of our lives. Let God take His rightful place on the throne of your heart, and watch Him as He drives the car of your life with controlled energy.
It’s about the Cross by Ball Brothers