EASTER IS JUST FOUR WEEKS AWAY

Easter is less than four weeks away. At this point, it does not look like we will be able to celebrate that at church. However, that should not take away from our observance of the most important day of the calendar. Yes, Christmas is important because it was the birth of our Savior. He left heaven and was born into a human baby’s flesh. However, the purpose of that birth was to be killed when he became an adult.

After the murder of Jesus on the cross, he was placed in the tomb of a rich man who was a believer in Christ. That rich man was a member of the leadership of the Jews and, yet, he was a secret believer because he buckled under the pressure of his peers. When the body of Christ was hanging on the cross after his death, Joseph of Arimathea finally came forward publicly as a believer and asked that he could bury the body of Christ. He placed the body of Jesus in his own tomb.

Old Testament prophecy and the words of Christ himself declared that Jesus would rise from the dead on the third day. There has been much dispute about the day of the crucifixion since it was on Friday and Jesus rose on Sunday. If we keep in mind the way the Jews calculated their daytime, there is a simple solution. The day began at dusk, not dawn. That means that the day Jesus was crucified began on Thursday evening. Calculate Thursday evening to Friday evening to Saturday evening and that is three days. Early in the morning women visited the tomb only to find angels there reminding them that Jesus promised he would come back.

This is the most remarkable statement that has ever been made in history! The actual body of Christ regained the spirit of Jesus. He even folded the grave clothes that were binding him. Jesus did not need the stone to be rolled away for him to exit the tomb. The stone need to be rolled away so that his followers could look in to see that he was no longer there.

After seeing the tomb empty and hearing the words of the women who saw Jesus, his disciples could not believe it. Of course, this would be so difficult to say that a person was prepared for the grave and entombed and later rose from the dead. It was so ironic that the ones who were responsible for the death of Jesus probably believed his prophecy more than the disciples. They requested that Pilot place guards at the tomb.

After Jesus rose, they bribed the guards to say they were overcome by the disciples and the body was stolen. This has two fallacies. According to the Roman military rules, any member who fails his duty should be put to death. They would certainly not expect a financial reward. Second, to say that the guards were overcome by disciples, borders on being ridiculous. These were trained and armed military people. Even if the disciples had weapons or a means to intimidate the guards, there is no way possible that they could overcome the guards and steal the body. The guards had no wounds in such a proposed fight with the disciples and should that be possible it would be very difficult to roll the stone away because the heavy stone would have to be rolled up hill.

Easter is an invitation for all people to turn their hearts over to Christ, repent of their sins, and live a new life as a believer. Because Jesus died on the cross and shed his blood the Bible talks of every new Christian as having been washed in the blood. Only Jesus could be our sacrifice to heal our relationship with the heavenly father. Only Jesus lived a perfect life and died a criminal’s death in behalf of each and every one of us. Easter asked the question, “how could we ignore this immense effort Jesus made that we all would have the promise of eternal life in heaven?”

Easter is less than four weeks away. At this point, it does not look like we will be able to celebrate that at church. However, that should not take away from our observance of the most important day of the calendar. Yes, Christmas is important because it was the birth of our Savior. He left heaven and was born into a human baby’s flesh. However, the purpose of that birth was to be killed when he became an adult.

After the murder of Jesus on the cross, he was placed in the tomb of a rich man who was a believer in Christ. That rich man was a member of the leadership of the Jews and, yet, he was a secret believer because he buckled under the pressure of his peers. When the body of Christ was hanging on the cross after his death, Joseph of Arimathea finally came forward publicly as a believer and asked that he could bury the body of Christ. He placed the body of Jesus in his own tomb.

Old Testament prophecy and the words of Christ himself declared that Jesus would rise from the dead on the third day. There has been much dispute about the day of the crucifixion since it was on Friday and Jesus rose on Sunday. If we keep in mind the way the Jews calculated their daytime, there is a simple solution. The day began at dusk, not dawn. That means that the day Jesus was crucified began on Thursday evening. Calculate Thursday evening to Friday evening to Saturday evening and that is three days. Early in the morning women visited the tomb only to find angels there reminding them that Jesus promised he would come back.

This is the most remarkable statement that has ever been made in history! The actual body of Christ regained the spirit of Jesus. He even folded the grave clothes that were binding him. Jesus did not need the stone to be rolled away for him to exit the tomb. The stone need to be rolled away so that his followers could look in to see that he was no longer there.

After seeing the tomb empty and hearing the words of the women who saw Jesus, his disciples could not believe it. Of course, this would be so difficult to say that a person was prepared for the grave and entombed and later rose from the dead. It was so ironic that the ones who were responsible for the death of Jesus probably believed his prophecy more than the disciples. They requested that Pilot place guards at the tomb.

After Jesus rose, they bribed the guards to say they were overcome by the disciples and the body was stolen. This has two fallacies. According to the Roman military rules, any member who fails his duty should be put to death. They would certainly not expect a financial reward. Second, to say that the guards were overcome by disciples, borders on being ridiculous. These were trained and armed military people. Even if the disciples had weapons or a means to intimidate the guards, there is no way possible that they could overcome the guards and steal the body. The guards had no wounds in such a proposed fight with the disciples and should that be possible it would be very difficult to roll the stone away because the heavy stone would have to be rolled up hill.

Easter is an invitation for all people to turn their hearts over to Christ, repent of their sins, and live a new life as a believer. Because Jesus died on the cross and shed his blood the Bible talks of every new Christian as having been washed in the blood. Only Jesus could be our sacrifice to heal our relationship with the heavenly father. Only Jesus lived a perfect life and died a criminal’s death in behalf of each and every one of us. Easter asked the question, “how could we ignore this immense effort Jesus made that we all would have the promise of eternal life in heaven?”

Because we are housebound as a nation, we cannot sit in church and listen to spectacular music or here stirring sermons. We cannot have public Easter egg hunts. It is useless to think of the Easter Bunny. All of the superficial and substitutionary observance of Easter has been put aside. We are left with the one and most important thing. Jesus bled on the cross and died so that we might live. He came out of the tomb so that we do not have to fear death and know that through him death is a temporary experience. Instead of talking about all those minor things connected to Easter, let us rejoice in the resurrection of Christ. He is alive! He is alive! He is alive! He is alive!

Categories Christmas, Easter, Murder,crucifixion, Easter, Calvary,resurrection

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