The Hope of Resurrection Sunday feels like a soft breeze on a warm day but comes in like a hurricane. One moment changes everything. Jesus goes from being a great teacher to being the Risen Messiah! Of course, he has been that all along, but Sunday proved it to be true. The prophecy of his own death and resurrection from Matthew 16:21 and 17:22 is fulfilled, and everything He taught is now backed up by the power of this event. If this is true, then why would anyone doubt the validity of any statement he made or lesson he taught when He walked this Earth. It demonstrates His power over death, which in turn gives us peace in that eternity with Him begins now.
While this news is incredible and freeing, what good is it if we don’t first recognize our need for Friday? If you don’t recognize that you are a sinner in need of a Savior, then Jesus’s sacrifice isn’t significant to you, and Sunday’s resurrection is just a crazy historical story.
If the power of Jesus’s death and resurrection doesn’t overcome you with deep gratitude, ask yourself whether or not you recognize your need for it.
Maybe at one point, you did recognize it, but over the years, you’ve let yourself grow accustomed to the story. It has become routine knowledge rather than the life-changing event that it is. If we as Christians lose the awe of Jesus’s sacrifice, then we forget the power of the Gospel, and it no longer influences our daily lives. Let me remind you (or tell you if you don’t already know) of its power with the words of Paul from Ephesians 2:1-10,
“As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. But God, because of his great love for us, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”
WE WERE DEAD. BUT GOD, because of his great love for us, who is rich in mercy, made us ALIVE with Christ.
But God. I pray the power of those words is not lost on you. He changed everything with the sacrifice of His Son. He brought us back to life just like He did with Jesus. We can try all we want, but we are nothing without Jesus’s sacrifice. We were created by a Holy and Perfect God, and if we want to live in the glory of His Kingdom now and for eternity to come, we need Jesus.
I don’t know about you, but I need Jesus every single day. I need His grace and mercy. I need the Spirit’s influence in my life. I need the sacrifice He made so that I can have the Hope of one day being in the presence of God. (Okay, I do know about you because I know that this is true for all of us.) Friday means that my sins are covered. Friday means that I get to live in Christ. Friday means so much to me because Friday means that Sunday is coming, too. We have so much Hope because of the Resurrection, but we can’t fully appreciate the hope and awe of Sunday if we don’t first recognize our need for Friday.
As we approach Good Friday and Resurrection Sunday, I encourage you to set aside some time to remind yourself of the power of Jesus’s sacrifice. Meditate on Ephesians 2. Ask God to break your heart of pride and humble yourself before Him, recognizing your sin and your need for a Savior. Invite the Spirit to mold your heart and give you a deep passion for the life that Friday offers us.
Join us on Sunday as we celebrate the power and awe of Jesus, the life that comes from his sacrifice, and the Hope of the resurrection.
If you don’t know about Jesus, I want to invite you to learn about Him with us. Call our office, 317-846-8166, email me amy[at]nccoc.org, reach out to our Elders, elders[at]nccoc.org. We want you to live in the same Hope that we have through Jesus, our Risen Messiah.