Today is the day every year that Christians celebrate as the day of the risen Messiah, Jesus Christ. It is a measure of our faith, whether we live every day as the day of the risen Jesus, or whether we need to be called back into a deeper relationship with God the Father, Son and Spirit. Some, like the author’s point of Not a Fan (Amazon), may identify as Christians, but that identity has not radically altered their lives; many of us do not share how God has changed us. For being a fan of something or someone is not the same as intimate, personal experience. Some therefore cannot acknowledge, that through Jesus, our marriages have been strengthened or an addiction has been overcome. Yet Easter is symbolic, in that we, through the Mercy and Grace of God, can return to Him, through the blood of Christ, and be strengthened. Our confidence will be refreshed in a daily relationship with God gained through reflecting on his Word, prayer and fellowship with believers. We can then celebrate the resurrection of Jesus every day.
15 He asked her, “Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?”John 20:15 (NIV)
the risen Jesus changes everything
The disciples who had been with Jesus, as he taught them, healed the sick and sent them out in his Name to minister to people, before he was arrested and crucified, were frightened. In the book of John, Chapter 20 (NIV), Mary Magdalene was on her way that morning to the tomb to anoint the body. At her alarm, disciples ran to the empty tomb, not expecting the risen Jesus. Jesus spent time with five hundred believers over forty days, encouraging them that everything they had learned from Him was true. We can trust that the accounts are truthful, in that disciples weakness, boasts, doubt, fears, and embarrassing moments would not included in fanciful tales. We know that Jews and Gentiles named in the New Testament existed, that contemporary historians wrote about the followers of Jesus and that thousands who refused to renounce their faith risked death, imprisonment and persecution in the centuries since.
it is decision-time
If we call ourselves Christian, we must live according to God’s Word, and through faith, humility and the Grace of God, our weaknesses will be forgiven. We should share with other how God has changed, healed, or encouraged us. And by inviting others, teaching them, and baptizing them into the Name of Jesus, we follow Jesus’ commission.
And if you are not a Christian, take the opportunity to deepen your understanding of God, Man and the Universe. Does your faith answer the same life questions? Bring you the same peace, joy, and fulfillment as that through the Son of God? If you do not believe in God, rest assured that God believes in you. If our lives are spent, as God speaking through Isaiah tells us in Isaiah 16, in sacrifices and “shrines” to other gods, we wear ourselves out in satisfying them.
11 My heart laments for Moab like a harp, my inmost being for Kir Hareseth. 12 When Moab appears at her high place, she only wears herself out; when she goes to her shrine to pray, it is to no avail. Isaiah 16:11 -12