Resurrection Day

For many, the Passion of Christ stops with the cross, it stops with his sufferings and his anguish in which we see the pain he struggled with and the blood that Jesus shed.  It is true that we are washed in his blood and our sins were washed away because of the cross, but we shouldn’t stop there and leave it at the cross.  There is a greater day that took place and is the reason we can all have faith today.  That reason is “Resurrection Day”.

The empty tomb that we find is the reason we can hope in the plans the Lord has for our lives.  Without the empty tomb we would have no reason to believe.  Jesus had to die for our sins, he had to face the trials for us to be saved, but if he were still in the tomb we would have no reason to celebrate because death would have won…the earth had to shake, the stone had to be moved, and the Lord had to walk out that day or we could not be saved.

We cannot earn our way to heaven on works, we cannot get there by simply knowing the history, and we must be fully involved in this realization.  We, as Christians, must give our lives for the sake of Christ.  We each need to experience our own resurrection to get by in life.  We must let ourselves be shaken, we must roll away our stone and allow the Lord to enter our hearts for us to fully align with God’s will for our lives.

God has plans for us, plans that included Jesus dying on a cross so that we could be granted the eternal life that God has promised to His people.  We are given so much through the blood of Christ that was shed on the cross that was intended for us, but as I have stated, without the resurrection the cross would mean nothing to us.

I encourage each of you today to seek the cross, but don’t forget the reason that the cross has the power it does.  Today, experience your own resurrection day by allowing the Lord into your heart, and remember what it took for us to have the promise of eternal life.  Jesus came to the world to save it, not to offer condemnation.

Are you willing to roll back the stone that is covering your heart today and allow the Lord in to do the great work in you that he has planned?  I urge you to experience a resurrection in your life today, because without resurrection – the cross is just a cross and Jesus’ blood was poured out for nothing.

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The Cross

One of the most inconceivable things within the Christian faith is the Cross of Jesus.  With this week being the Passion week, I have been focused intently on the cross and what it means to each of us.

What is so difficult to understand is the grace that was shown with a simple act of mercy that was more than any man on earth could do for each other.  There was only one who walked the earth that could have done what Jesus did, and that was Jesus himself.

Jesus came to save the world (John 3:17) and that is just what he did…dying on a cross, bearing the weight of the world on his shoulders.

There are a few interesting facts about the cross that make this even more amazing.  The Old Testament prophesies paint a picture of a Messiah that would come and “by his stripes we are healed (Is. 53:6)”.  What is even more interesting, even Jesus said that there would be a time when the Son of Man would be lifted up.

The traditional Jewish method of punishment was stoning, yet, they looked to the Roman method for Jesus’ execution.  They had determined that he would be taken out…they even pushed through trials at times that went against their own rules and regulations.  There were so many different things that should have happened differently according to their customs, and yet, the main accusation against Jesus was that he was not like the Pharisees…he was set apart.

The truth of the cross is that it happened just as it was told, down to the letter that was written in blood that gave us pardon from our sins.  By the stripes of Jesus we have been healed.  Jesus was beaten, brusied, and nailed to a cross to bear a sin that he never committed.

In fact, what is likely the most interesting fact of the cross is that Jesus knew what was coming.  How many of us, knowing that death on a cross was our final act, would willingly give in to the torture so that others may live?  How many of us would die for the ones who were nailing us to the cross?  How many of us would give ourselves freely to the will of God, even if it meant death?

That is what the cross is all about, a sacrifice that was given freely…look to the cross today and find true peace and comfort during this Easter week.