Blessed Easter to you. May the remembrance of what the Lord Jesus did for us at Calvary followed by the empty tomb always ring loudly in your heart. This is the real Christian celebration: He died and He is alive. Take this weekend’s message out of Christianity and you have nothing–hopelessness, meaninglessness–and that’s frightening!
We started the day together watching REACH SA’s Easter Sunday service with Glenn Lyons. Then we had breakfast followed by watching Christ Church Midrand’s service. Both messages were good. I loved the way Glenn used the spacemen’s preparations as an illustration. And, as Jenny comments, Martin’s message was pointed–the non-Christian who listened to it knows without a doubt that they are non-Christian!
By now it was close to midday–time to make pizza! I brought the bread maker out, got all the ingredients ready for the topping, measured off the ingredients for the dough correctly and placed it into the tray that fits into the bread maker. I set it … heard some humming … heard some heating … and after 40 minutes, nothing! I reset the machine twice again, with the same results.
I could dump the ingredients or take it out of the pan and knead it myself. Never did this before! Out with the pizza machine, rolled out the dough, put on my secret base paste, added the oil and the sweet and sour sauce, and added the toppings of cheese, tomato, green pepper, red onion, banana and sliced pork worsies. The end result was enough dough for three large pizzas–one for Jen, one for the neighbour and one for me … and no need for supper tonight! It was delicious!
When something fails you can dump it or use it. I chose to use it and was pleased with the results.
Religion goes like this–try it, use it and maybe dump it–and what are the results?
Christianity is not a religion in the sense of being religious. Christianity is a relationship. You can’t try it and use it and then dump it. When the gospel makes sense in your heart, the Holy Spirit is actively at work convincing you of the truth of the gospel, and He slowly brings you to understand this truth and respond to it–bringing you into a relationship with Jesus as your Lord and Saviour.
That is the essence and purpose of the Easter Weekend.
Immediately after Jesus’ resurrection, we find John recording a number of eye witness accounts of Jesus resurrection, proving Jesus who was dead (crucified) is now alive. The last one in John 20 was the “Thomas” account. John writes under inspiration:
Jn 20:30 Jesus did many other miraculous signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. 31 But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.
When John writes, “But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name”, he has in mind all the miracles Jesus did, but the supreme one was Jesus’ death and resurrection: “that by believing you may have life in his name”.
You can’t try the gospel and use the gospel and then dump the gospel. You either believe or you don’t believe. If you don’t believe you are lost and hell bound. If you believe you are saved and are heaven bound. You know where you stand!
Father, thank you for your supreme gift of Jesus’ sacrificial death and miraculous return to life. Thank you that this is the culmination of the Old Covenant, making it obsolete and giving us a New Covenant written in the Blood of Jesus. Thank you for your rescue mission and my salvation. Amen.