April 2018- The Easter Story
The Easter story, summed up so succinctly in 1 Corinthians 15.4‐5, is a poignant record of the death, burial and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. It tells us of the death of One who went about doing good, who healed multitudes, and who brought blessing to so many. But it tells above all of the sacrifice of the One who “bare our sins in His own body on the tree” (1 Pet 2.24). What He endured there is beyond our comprehension.
It’s interesting to remember that, in one way or another, each of these aspects of Easter was prophesied or portrayed ‐ read passages like Psalm 22; Isaiah 5253; Jonah 1.17‐2.10, and others.
But think for a moment of the reason for His coming and the redemption He procured. Redemption involves a price – “Ye are bought with a price” (1 Cor 6.20; 7.23). We can never estimate what that price was, but He paid it in full. It involves a change of master ‐ we now belong to the Lord Jesus not to the world or its prince – “We are ambassadors for Christ” (2 Cor 5.20). It involves a loyalty in the service of the One who paid that price: “Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful” (1 Cor 4.2). Does that grip our souls as it should? Where do we fit in here?
In each of the Gospels we read of a man (Joseph of Arimathæa) who courageously requested the body of Jesus. What were his thoughts as he took the body of the Lord, prepared it lovingly for burial, and laid it in a new tomb? There seems to be about this man a reverence in relation to the Lord’s burial.
What about us? While we remember the manhood of the Lord Jesus Christ, let us never forget that He was announced by the shepherds as “Christ the Lord”. Even in manhood He never ceased to be Christ the Lord. While it is a tremendous privilege to know the One who is not ashamed to call us “brethren” (Heb 2.11), this must never dilute our reverence as we know His presence day by day.
On the third day, there were those who came to the tomb. Imagine their feelings as they found that it was now open, but more remarkable was the fact that the body of the Lord Jesus was no longer there – He had risen, and we now rejoice in the fact that we have a Saviour in glory, for whose return we look!
These are simple thoughts around passages of Scripture which we know well. Let’s just meditate on them afresh so that we might have a deeper appreciation of the One who died, was buried and who rose again the third day. Hallelujah!