This week, we celebrate the powerful culmination of the first coming of Jesus! “Born to die to rise again; to crush the power of Satan’s sin.” This is the reason why we celebrate and rejoice this week!
The Creator of all things, taking on the form of His own creation – walking among them, experiencing the same difficulties they experience. The One who never sleeps or slumbers experiencing fatigue and hunger and thirst. The One whose words were rejected and broken by His creation, breaking bread with them, saying to them, “this is My body broken for you”. The One who was present at the casting out of Lucifer and his angels from heaven, submitting willingly to the lash and the nail from Satan’s hand. The One who turned rebellious mankind away from the Garden of Eden telling a thief from His cross, “Today, you will be with Me in Paradise!”
The One who told the people to roll the stone away from Lazarus’ tomb so that He could raise him from the dead – Himself laid behind a stone on the slab of death. The One whose disciples couldn’t believe that He was alive enters their chamber of fear saying, “Touch my hands and feet. Put your hand into My side. Why are you troubled and why do doubts rise in your hearts?” The One who created the universe, Pleiades and Orion, cooks fish and prepares dinner for His disciples.
This is the reason we celebrate this Resurrection Week!
That’s a truly beautiful story but what does it have to do with me now?
That’s what I want to address today.
Jesus’ death was what we call a “substitutionary” death. He did not die for His own sins. The religious leaders and the Roman authorities tested Him over and over and could not prove that He ever did anything wrong or deserving of death. The death He died; He died as a substitute for you and I!
Isaiah 53:5 – “He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed.”
Look at yourself in the mirror and say, “You killed Jesus!” It was by your hand that He was put to death! Now, He is risen from the dead and each of us has to reckon with Him over what we have done!
Those who do not settle this blood debt will be found guilty of murdering Christ. But, for those who give their lives to Him in faith:
- Our old life is crucified and buried!
Galatians 2:20: “I am crucified with Christ!” He died our death so we died to the old life and its controlling habits. Through baptism, the old life is buried with Him. When Jesus entered the grave, so did your old way of living! A dead man stops sinning! The body controlled by sin is done away with; I am no longer a slave to sin in my life! If you live by faith in Jesus, neither are you!
- We are raised to walk in newness of life!
If we die with Christ, it is certain that we will be raised with Him! Jesus did not stay in the grave, He lives to the Father! The Father called Him out of the grave on the chilly Easter morning and He has called us out of our life of death! You may go home to the same house and drive the same car but you are not the same! You live a life that is now free from the control of sin and submitted to the control of the Holy Spirit of the Living Christ! Your life will take a new direction because it is not following the same path! Were you addicted? You’re not now – is Jesus addicted?
- We never have to fear death again!
Verses 8-11: “Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, dies no more. Death no longer has dominion over Him. For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God. Likewise, you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
The person who is free from sin does not ever have to fear death!
This is the transformation that all who are truly saved pass through:
Death to sin
Resurrection in the Spirit
New way of living evidenced by walking in Christ
We celebrate Jesus’ resurrection this week, but in doing so, we celebrate your resurrection as well!!