THE MIRACLE OF EASTER
Easter is made up of two distinct components:
- Good Friday – Where we celebrate the cross.
- Easter Sunday – Where we celebrate the resurrection.
Good Friday reminds us of the pain associated with sin. Sin creates ruins in our lives. Sin destroys what we love most.
Romans 6:23 (NIV) For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
The word death, in the Greek, means separation. Physical death is separation from your body. Spiritual death is separation from God. Sin separates. It separates us from God. It separates us from friends. It destroys marriages. It creates ruins. Jesus came to bridge the gap of separation that sin had created. Jesus came to pay the bill of death so we could receive God’s life.
- Forgiveness is offered at the cross.
- A new life is offered at the resurrection.
Revelation 1:18 (TLB) I am the First and Last, the Living One who died, who is now alive forevermore, who has the keys of hell and death—don’t be afraid!
Keys unlock things. Jesus possess the power to unlock death for everyone. God doesn’t just want you to experience the cross. He wants you to experience the resurrection. Christianity is not just about receiving forgiveness. It is about bringing life back into things that have been ruined.
LET THE RUINS COME TO LIFE
Ephesians 1:19 (TLB) I pray that you will begin to understand how incredibly great his power is to help those who believe him [those who had the Friday experience].
God doesn’t just want you to experience forgiveness. He wants you to experience the power of resurrection.
Isaiah 61:1-4 (NIV) The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion— to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor. They will rebuild the ancient ruins and restore the places long devastated; they will renew the ruined cities that have been devastated for generations.
Easter is not an event
Easter is an invitation to a process, a four step journey, that God wants to take you on.
- Step 1: Stop dying! “The LORD has anointed me to proclaim Good News to the poor . . .” Enter into a relationship with God.
Easter is “death working backwards.” – C.S. Lewis
- Step 2: Start rebuilding. “Bind up the brokenhearted . . . proclaim freedom for the captives . . . release from darkness . . .” Get into life giving relationships.
God’s grace will meet you wherever you are, but it will never leave you where it found you. God wants to heal you.
- Step 3: Stop doubting. “They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of His splendor.” Let God use your life.
God sees greatness in me that I can’t see in myself.
- Step 4: Start living. “They will rebuild the ancient ruins and restore the places long devastated; they will renew the ruined cities that have been devastated for generations.”
Jesus didn’t come to make bad people good. He came to make dead people alive. God wants your ruins, your broken places, to come to life. God wants you to experience the resurrection power of Jesus. He wants to take you on a spiritual journey.