The first part of the good news is that Jesus is no longer on a cross or in some tomb.
He is risen. He is resurrected from the dead.
The religious trial and civil trial that Jesus was subjected to was illegal by the existing laws of the land. Jesus’ trial was a conspiracy hatched at the highest levels of the society. It was not the common people who wanted Jesus dead, it was the leaders of that time.
In the short span of 18 hours Jesus of Nazareth was captured in the garden by a security force, tried, convicted and executed--the religious leaders were convinced they had rid themselves of a growing irritation.
But after the third day, something happened that sent their plans spinning out of control.
The man whom they tried and convicted without just cause.
The man who was impaled on a tree, and spent six hours there.
The man who was laid in the tomb and a HUGE rock placed at the entrance of this tomb is now....ALIVE.
Christian churches spend a lot of time focusing on the Cross. Yes, the crucifixion event was important. I believe, however, it is more important to understand what happened at the cross and look beyond that event to what happened next: The Resurrection from the dead of the man known as Jesus of Nazareth.
There was a conspiracy against Jesus.
A lot of people who wanted him dead --and, they wanted him to stay dead.
But somehow, that didn’t happen.
I have never understood the degradation of this Easter season into being about cartoon characters and bunnies and egg hunts.
Clearly, there is NOTHING AT ALL wrong with any of those extra-curricular experiences as long as you are reinforcing to children that the main event to be discussed is the most important event in the history of mankind
The Resurrection from the dead of Jesus of Nazareth.
I hope that Christians should not allow the extra curricular events of this time to cause the reality of the message to descend into fairy tale land
Because without this event, none of us have any hope for eternity with God.
If there is no resurrection from the dead of the man, JESUS of NAZARETH, we are, my friends, without hope.
The death bell has been struck for you, me, our children and our friends. We’re done. Period.
It is only through the shedding of blood and the resurrection that we have a path back to God.
And that is no fairy tale.
The man, Jesus of Nazareth’s resurrection from the dead is not something to be chatted about once a year and placed on a shelf until the following year when we get our our bonnets and our lilies.
It is an event of deep significance that we would do well to consider every day of our lives.
Without this singular event, our lives would be sad indeed. Why?
Because every moment of every day we would be perishing--sinking further and further into an eternity with no light, no hope and no heavenly Father to embrace us with love and tenderness.