I love this time of the year. For at the time of this post, Christians all over the world have participated in services that have recognized the death, burial, and resurrection of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ. For the resurrection is unifying theme within the Christian faith. For while the idea of a god coming to the earth is not new to humanity, the idea of his death being predicted by prophets in antiquity, fulfilling such prophesy, dying, being resurrected back to life and protecting his servants is nothing short of amazing.
For this message is good news for humanity. For the Apostle John writes in his account of Jesus’s life, “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him. (John 3:16-17 NLT) I don’t know about you but for me this is good news. I love how the God of the bible doesn’t discriminate against me for being of African descent, American, or of whatever “ism” we can invent. We learn through his revealed word to humanity that he loves us. And to prove his love, he sent his son Jesus to this world so that we do not have to perish in sin but have ever lasting life. This life can only be accessed through Jesus Christ.
That word perish is also interesting. For it has various meanings. Merriam Webster defines it as: to die or be killed; to disappear or be destroyed; to cease to exist; to slowly break apart by a natural process. The bible teaches us that men and women have been placed up under the burden of sin (lawlessness) through the actions of our ancestors Adam and Eve (see Romans 5:12). With this weight of sin, we all have been separated from the love of God. For God is a holy (pure) God who doesn’t play well with sin. Because sin when it has reached its full maturity produces death (James 1:15). In order for us to reconnect with God, blood has to be shed to cover the stain and guilt of sin. Why is this the case? In the bible, blood represents life. In order for death (sin) to be covered and done away with, life has to be presented. That is one reason why the God of the bible requires a sacrifice. For when we encounter the first instance of sin in the bible, God doesn’t destroy his children (Adam & Eve) he sacrifices life (animals) to provide a covering (clothing made of animal skin) as a figurative and symbolic way to cover his children’s sin and their shame (Genesis 3:21). For without the shedding of blood there is no remittance (covering) of sin (Hebrews 9:22).
Now Jesus Christ, the son of God is known to us as the Lamb of God who takes the sin of the world (John 1:29). Hallelujah! This is good news. Well, to me and others who seek after light and righteousness it is good news. But the apostle Paul sheds more light on this subject as to why some can’t stand this message. “Our lives are a Christ-like fragrance rising up to God. But this fragrance is perceived differently by those who are being saved and by those who are perishing. To those who are perishing, we are a dreadful smell of death and doom. But to those who are being saved, we are a life-giving perfume (2 Corinthians 2:15-16 NLT).
This is so true. Many oppose the message of the resurrection because it reminds them that their life is not their own. That we must take account of our actions on how we live, treat, and love others. Because there is a coming day of judgment for both the living and the dead. But thanks be to God, my savior is there to help in the time of trouble. For with the resurrection, just like he raised Jesus’ mortal body from the dead, he can raise your life back from the dead. For if you study scripture, death is just separation. In particular it is the separation of the spirit from the body. And just like your life may be dead (separated from God) you can gain reconciliation with God. But this can only be done by acknowledging his son (Jesus Christ) as the only way to him. For many say that they want to know their creator and to seek out their purpose or “the” purpose of life. But the only way to do this is to use the map that leads us to life: Jesus Christ. For we believe that Jesus Christ is the only way to God. Now you may say, “Tim that is too narrow a view point. For just like there are stars without number, there are many ways to God”. I would agree with you in one point there are many ways to the gods of this earth. But if you are talking about the God of the bible, there is only one way. For in antiquity, he allowed us to follow after our own desires but within every man and women he placed the seeds of eternity. For every person, who is mature knows right from wrong. And just as this is true, every person chooses which god they may serve. For now in this age of humanity, he has revealed to us a better covenant. A covenant that is sealed by the precious blood of Jesus Christ. And since his gospel is preached, there is no longer an excuse for rejecting this way to salvation.
But thanks be to God, with the resurrection there is fullness of joy. For we know that Jesus Christ can raise our lives from sin and makes us right with God. He changes our nature and renews our hearts and minds through continual fellowship with him through his revealed word and prayer. What’s more he promises us everlasting life not doom but life. Let him come into your heart, for he is standing at the door, even today knocking. Let him in.
The grace of our lord be with you.