Easter is the celebration of the resurrection of Jesus Christ and the resurrection is the key doctrine of the Christian faith. Think about it, no other faith has at its core a leader who conquers death. If Jesus did not conquer death, then faith in him means nothing. But Jesus did raise and he spoke about his death and resurrection long before he went to the cross. He tied the events that would happen directly to the Old Testament then after he rose he reminded his followers of what he had said.
Luke 24 tells us of an event after Jesus had risen. I love this event as it’s full of drama and humor. Jesus appeared to some of his men who were really confused. He kept himself from being recognized by them but walked along with them. As the disciples were talking, Jesus jumped into the conversation. He asked them what they were talking about but they’re blown away that anyone hadn’t heard the news. So they explain that Jesus was a powerful prophet in word and deed. They told him how the religious leaders handed him over to be crucified while they had hoped that he was going to redeem Israel. “And now it’s been three days since all that took place and some of our women went to the tomb this morning and didn’t find his body.” They told us about angels, who said he was alive – then some of our companions went and found the tomb empty, but they didn’t see Jesus.”
I love that narrative, I picture Jesus with a smile on his face as he hears them describe what they do not know. What they don’t know is not only is Jesus alive, but he is walking with them.
Now Jesus speaks and he uses this as a teaching moment. Jesus said; “How foolish you guys are, don’t you believe what the prophets spoke – that Christ had to suffer to enter his glory?”
Luke 24:27 states, “And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.”
Did you catch that? Jesus went back to the scriptures and showed them that this was God’s plan. God’s plan was to bring sinful human into a relationship with himself because sin separated humans from God. So Jesus would atone for sin by his death, he would rise from the dead to prove his sacrifice was accepted. Later he ascends into heaven so that those who trust in him may also rise to eternal life. It’s a plan that continues today.
2 Corinthians 5:21 states, “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”
Easter is when we remember Christ’s resurrection but there’s another promise that Jesus gave the church. Just as he spoke about the resurrection and it happened, you can take it to the bank that his other promise will happen as well. The promise? “To return in power and glory.” All believers should be looking forward to that day, and be it by rapture or by death we know that his coming will be in an instant, when the dead will rise and those who are alive will be caught up to meet the Lord in the air.
Have you trusted in the Jesus? Is Easter the best day to you?
Pastor Rich Lammay of High Sierra Fellowship is a member of the Carson Valley Ministers’ Association.