Brothers and Sisters,
As we continue our journey through The Story, we now approach the cross. Praying in Gethsemane, Jesus begged the Father, “If it is possible, let this cup pass from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.” Jesus knew what lay ahead, that he would be beaten, scourged, and crucified. Jesus had come to earth for this purpose, but the Son of God was also fully human. He didn’t want to suffer and die.
Yet Jesus faced all this for you and me. He was crucified by his own creations, “pierced for our transgressions, crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.” Jesus showed us how to live, he died the death that we deserved, and he rose that we too might have eternal life.
This is the Good News; it is old news, yet ever new. That’s why Paul writes in First Corinthians 2, “I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.”
What do you know? What are you sure of? Of what have you become convinced? It seems the older I get the less I know for certain. Yet of this we can be sure: Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again.
This April, and in the months to come, live in that truth. Jesus’ resurrection is not merely a historical event; it is a present reality. Jesus is leading the resurrection parade and he invites us to join him! You and I can have eternal life in Jesus, that’s true. But eternity begins now. What in your life needs to die? What needs to be surrendered more fully to Christ? In what areas do you need to experience resurrection?
One last question: How can you bring Christ’s resurrection to the world? Jesus died, Jesus rose, Jesus ascended into heaven, and he empowered his followers with the Holy Spirit. The Spirit that raised Christ from the dead and that descended upon the believers at Pentecost now dwells in you and me. We have been empowered – now we need to go forth, joining the resurrection parade, and breathing new life into the world around us.
In joy, celebration, and hope,