In keeping with that, God presents Jesus' resurrection as a solemn pledge that He will also raise us up through Jesus Christ. It is a saving power, a reconciling power, a re-creating power, a transforming power. His resurrection changed everything, and his divine power over death proved that he was exactly who he claimed to be. Yet God (the innocent party) has taken the initiative and done something astonishing to enable man (the guilty party) to be at peace with him by dealing with the root cause of the rift — human sin. Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Savior and commit your life to Him. Although the message of Divine Mercy is prominent in the teachings of Jesus, and expressed through His works of healing throughout His Galilean ministry, the gospel writers emphasize that it is the Cross and the Resurrection of Jesus, above all, that is the most decisive breakthrough of … His resurrection is for US, not just for Himself: He rises to new life in order to be with us always, to the end of time (Mt. What Were the Key Events in the Life of Jesus Christ? In the death of his Son, God not only punished human sin but also satisfied his own righteous judgment, and in this, he way removed the barrier separating him from sinners. When one of the criminals crucified alongside Jesus turned to him in faith, Jesus promised him, "Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise" (Luke 23:43). my host replied, "The moment the sun sets." The symbol of Christianity is an empty cross because the Bible's glorious message is that Jesus is alive today, having triumphed gloriously over sin and death. Some years ago I was in Greece at the time of a general election. If Jesus had not been raised from the dead after living a perfect, sinless life, the only conclusion we could draw is that in the end, evil permanently wins and good is destroyed. If you are willing, I will help you to be put on the cross." The evil witnessed in Auschwitz and Birkenau could not destroy the power of the Cross or the reality of the resurrection; neither can the evil we witness today being thrust upon life and family destroy what God has in store for His children – for those who love Him. (I Can't Tell Sometimes), Tapping into God's Strength by Waiting on Him. This is why the apostle Paul writes, "While we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son" (Romans 5:10) and tells early Christians, "You who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ" (Ephesians 2:13). The illustration is not perfect, but the main point is clear. Neither setting the finest example nor following it can make sinners right with God. God declares a person righteous on the basis of the life and death of his Son, who was acting on that person's behalf. (, Not only are you helplessly exposed to God's righteous anger day after day (even if you are not aware of this), but by rejecting his invitation, made at such unimaginable cost, you are "stor­ing up [God's] wrath" for the day when "God's righteous judgment will be revealed" (, God may not allow you another day, let alone another week, month or year, in which to turn to him. His resurrection is all the proof we need that those in whose place he died can never be asked to pay sin's debt again. God may not allow you another day, let alone another week, month or year, in which to turn to him. This profound insight—that the resurrection confirms that love is the deepest meaning of the crucifixion carries several implications. They are "slaves of sin" (Romans 6:17). When Jesus said, ‘Come to me', it was not a casual suggestion or a vague ‘take it or leave it' offer, but a serious and firm instruction. Go to the cross and remain there. That is by accepting the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross for the sake of our sins. The crucifixion and resurrection powerfully demonstrate God’s mercy and justice. It seems that the cross never kills the ignored or tolerated parts of our life. The best way to know the power of Christ’s resurrection in our married life is to go to the cross. (5) Since the Resurrection had been promised as the main proof of Christ’s Divine mission, it has a greater dogmatic importance than any other fact. The one who paid the debt was released from the prison of death. There is a purpose for which Christ rose from the dead, and there is a power made available to us through His resurrection. In the temple in Jerusalem, the focal point of the nation's worship, a richly-embroidered veil or curtain separated the "Holy Place" from the "Most Holy Place," the inner sanctuary that represented God's presence. Without the Cross, the Resurrection is inconceivable and without the Resurrection the Cross has no point. This comes across powerfully, Jesus showed the cost of being the propitiation for sin when on the cross he cried out, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" Theories that he was buried while still alive and somehow recovered full health and strength again are absurd. He gives the same invitation today. The resurrection is the guarantee of ultimate justice. This is what Jesus did in dying on behalf of others: "In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins" (1 John 4:10). Early in the 20th century, several of the popes called the world back to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. As Jesus drew his last breath, "The curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom" (Matthew 27:51). ", The Bible's first answer is that Jesus "was declared to be the Son of God in power … by his resurrection from the dead" (, It showed him to be everything he claimed to be. "Propitiation" means appeasing an offended person by paying the penalty he demands for the offense. In the original language used, Jesus' last cry, "It is finished," is just one word — tetelestai — a word that was often written across a bill when it had been paid in full. If not, call upon him now, asking him to have mercy on you and to enable you to lay hold on the promises of the gospel. In other words, Jesus is the mercy seat, and all you've got to do is run to Him today and He will not only get you up and get you out, but He will move into your home, to your family, to your marriage, to your life, to your … We all know of people taken prisoner by someone who then demands a ransom. The Bible's answer is that in his death Jesus was bearing sin's penalty (which he did not deserve) in the place of others (who did). An invitation I received from my queen would to me be a command, and one I would feel under a willing oblig­ation to obey. The Proof of Promises Fulfilled: Christ's Resurrection. The same is true of an infinitely more important invitation, one that comes to everybody from the Lord Jesus Christ, who is "the King of kings and Lord of lords" (1 Timothy 6:15). God has ‘zero tolerance' of sin, and his holiness demands that all sin be punished. III. On one oc­casion over 500 saw him at the same time, and when the apostle Paul recorded this well over half of them were still alive and could confirm the fact (, The Christian church is the largest religious body the world has ever known (over two billion and growing by the thousand every day) and no other group, religious or otherwise, has made a greater contribution to the well-being of humankind. His death did not conclude his life; it crowned it. To believe in the resurrection is to believe in God. Jesus was punished as though he had never been holy so that those in whose place he died could be treated as though they had never been unholy. When I asked, "When do they close?" How do we know the price Jesus paid was accepted and the debt paid? Healthcare Professionals for Divine Mercy. Through Jesus’ death and resurrection, God turns on the power to the new life of a living hope (Now) According to His great mercy, He has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead…vs 3 It is a powerful picture of the urgent need to respond to God's invitation to turn to him while you can. As there was an armed guard of Roman soldiers at the tomb, Jesus' followers could not have stolen the body, nor would they have wanted to as it was buried safely in a friend's grave. The Bible certainly tells us that "God is love" (1 John 4:7), but also that he is "majestic in holiness" (Exodus 15:11) and that ‘the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men" (Romans 1:18). The justified sinner is brought into God's favor and family and received as though he had met all the demands of God's holy law. As the 20th-century American theologian, Donald Grey Barnhouse put it, "The resurrection of Christ is our receipted bill." When I turn on this switch power in the form of electricity flows through the switch and into the lightbulb, thus giving us light. PHILIPPIANS 3:10-11 05/31/95 Go over to light switch. On the cross, Jesus took the judgment of your sin—everything inside, everything outside—He completely removed it. As the British preacher, John Stott says, "A pattern cannot secure our pardon." Resurrection is self-sacrificial. As another New Testament writer puts it, "He laid down his life for us'" (1 John 3:16). Here is a source of power. Sermon on resurrection power RESURRECTION POWER! This miracle was a sign that, whereas under the old religious system the high priest alone could enter the symbolic presence of God, and then only once a year, the death of Jesus had removed the sin barrier between God and man. The cross and the resurrection show that freedom promised is now fully available in Jesus Christ. This idea is fatally misleading. Copyright © 2021 Marian Fathers of the Immaculate Conception of the B.V.M. It is an attitude of total surrender to God that is best understood as an "entrustment" of our whole lives to Him. “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” – John 8:36 … On Election Day I was told that the polling booths opened at sunrise. Reconciliation means bringing together those who are separated for one reason or another. We can escape sin's death penalty, find favour with God, be set free from prison, escape from our self-imposed captivity, have all our sins forgiven, have spiritual peace and be right with God forever. See also earlier installments of this article series: part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4, part 5, and part 6. Divine Mercy Sunday: What's This Feast All About, Anyway? It is a force that repudiates and virtually makes a joke of the crucifying powers in the world. It is also, as Pope Francis has told us, a healing power. Elsewhere God makes the wonderful promise, "You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart" (Jeremiah 29:13), but he also says, "Seek the Lord while he may be found; call upon him while he is near" (Isaiah 55:6). Some can be thrown away immediately, while deciding what to do about others is just a matter of choice, with no serious consequences. This explains why, as he was dying, Jesus cried out, "It is finished" (John 19:30). This enables him to receive back into his favor the person who committed the offense. When he invited a disciple (ever since known as "Doubting Thomas") to examine the wounds caused by his crucifixion so as to confirm that he had indeed risen, Thomas was convinced and cried out, "My Lord and my God!" Contributions are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law. This clearly illustrates the overwhelming importance of these events in the story of God's merciful love that Luke is narrating. Sinners are offered forgiveness; rebels are offered amnesty; enemies are offered friendship; outsiders are offered places in God's family; slaves to sin are offered release from its grip; prisoners are offered liberty; those doomed to spend eternity in hell are promised eternity in heaven — and all these are lovingly made to everybody, even those who deny God's existence or flatly reject the Bible's testimony that Jesus is divine. I have been to Buckingham Palace once as a tourist, but never at Her Majesty's invitation. For the Resurrection shows us not only that Christ's love was more powerful than sin and death, but more powerful than OUR sin and OUR death! His resurrection means that He has the power to convey His life to me. He says the same to you at this very moment. He does not come into judgment but has passed from death to life" (John 5:24). The basic meaning of the word is very straightforward and in relation to the death of Jesus is extremely important. 28:20), to fill us with His new life and thereby enable us to share in His Easter triumph. by Dr. John Blanchard (ep books, used by permission). To those who found life empty, without meaning or purpose, Jesus said, "I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst" (John 6:35). The basic meaning of the word is very straightforward and in relation to the death of Jesus is extremely important. Live Free with Resurrection Power. Answer: The resurrection of Jesus is important for several reasons. But there is real dependence also. There is power in what Jesus did on the cross – power that sets us all free. Without the pain and reality of the cross, without the sacrifice of Christ on our behalf, without the power of the Resurrection and his final victory … “Our Lord’s Cross is the gateway into His life. The Bible also says that because of sin God has become man's enemy: "For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men" (Romans 1:18). These seven big words reveal the most amazing promises, but how can we know that they are true and relevant to us today? "The power of the Cross and Resurrection is God's love, which acts 'with God before the world was', in the creation and direction of the world, before the incarnation, during the incarnation, before the sacrifice on the Cross, during the sacrifice on the Cross and after it." Resurrection Power in You We were buried with Him (Jesus) through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life (Romans 6:4) The death and resurrection of Jesus are the greatest events in history. April 20, 2003. The answer lies in the earth-shattering truth that on the third day after he died and was buried Jesus rose from the dead. As Jesus put it, "The light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their deeds were evil" (John 3:19). You may receive many invitations of one kind of another. • By the wounds inflicted upon Jesus in his scourging and at the cross, we … Although the message of Divine Mercy is prominent in the teachings of Jesus, and expressed through His works of healing throughout His Galilean ministry, the gospel writers emphasize that it is the Cross and the Resurrection of Jesus, above all, that is the most decisive breakthrough of God's merciful love in this fallen world. I often think of what various holidays are like for those serving Jesus … For example, after St. Peter's confession of faith in Christ in chapter 9 of St. Luke's gospel, the rest of the book tells the story of Jesus' final missionary walk from Galilee to Jerusalem, His arrest, trial, crucifixion and resurrection. The resurrection of Christ, and the resurrection of all Christians at his coming, was the sustaining power of Paul’s song in suffering and his love for jailers. Resurrection power is promised to every believer in Christ and we receive it in the same way that Jesus gave it. This is not being miserable or morbid; it is a simple fact. Jesus "was declared to be the Son of God in power … by his resurrection from the dead" God's invitations and commands are very different because left to yourself you are in clear and present danger. We need to know both the purpose and the power for us to enjoy maximally our relationship with God with the accompanying benefits in this world and in the world to come. Are you sure that your sins are forgiven and that when your life on earth ends you will spend eternity in heaven? In our family life and in the church life, we all need to go to the cross and remain there. Before Jesus died his deity had been ‘veiled' by his humanity, so that, in spite of his character, his teaching, and his miracles, he was in many ways no different from others. The message of the cross is the power of God because God acts powerfully through the cross of Jesus Christ. We may know the story of Christ's death and resurrection, but what do these events mean for us 2000 years later? We should begin by recognizing that Christ’s love was apparent for us on the cross itself. Understanding Its Meaning, Is God Merciful or Mad at Me? His perfect life met all the demands of God's law — he was "holy, innocent, unstained, separated from sinners" (Hebrews 7:26) — and his death paid in full the penalty that God's law demands. For millions of Christians remembering these events continues to be an important part of every day life. Services and sacraments, rites and rituals can never bridge the gap that sin has created. His resurrection did not make Jesus the Son of God, as he has always been so; it proved that he was. The Power of the Cross The cross was the greatest achievement in history and has cosmic and eternal ramifications. It is only by God's grace that you are being given the present opportunity to respond to his invitation, obey his command and lay hold on the promises of the forgiveness of sins and eternal life that he is making to you at this very moment. The opportunity to do so lasts only for as long as the "sun" of one's life is in the sky — and nobody knows when it will set. (3) He works in power today on earth through his Word and Spirit. Here are a few of the obvious pointers: The Bible has "many convincing proofs" (Acts 1:3) of the resurrection of Jesus, but what does it mean? The Bible sees sin as a debt owed by the sinner to God, but those on whose behalf Jesus died to receive not only "redemption through his blood" but also "the forgiveness of sins" (Ephesians 1:7). Far from being something over which God had no control, or a knee-jerk reaction to an unforeseen crisis, it was something he had planned "before the foundation of the world" (1 Peter 1:20). This is a very familiar word. (Matthew 27:46). For some forty years I have lived within fifteen miles of Buckingham Palace, the official residence of Queen Elizabeth II, the United Kingdom's head of state. Not only are you helplessly exposed to God's righteous anger day after day (even if you are not aware of this), but by rejecting his invitation, made at such unimaginable cost, you are "stor­ing up [God's] wrath" for the day when "God's righteous judgment will be revealed" (Romans 2:5). • Jesus on the cross, bearing our sins, gives us power to die to sins. For on the cross, God plays with power. If you had been the debtor and had left the country owing a large sum of money, your guarantor would have been jailed until the debt was cleared. The "trust" that Jesus asks for in the Image is not a passive thing. Many years ago in Britain, there were "debtors' prisons," where those who could not pay what they owed were held under arrest. (Ezekiel 33:11). This comes across powerfully when we read that "Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God" (1 Peter 3:18). Yet, as sinners stand condemned by a God whose eyes are "too pure to look on evil" and who "cannot tolerate wrong" (Habakkuk 1:13), how can we possibly be declared "Not Guilty" in his sight and treated as though we had never sinned? His resurrection changed everything, and his divine power over death proved that he was exactly who he claimed to be. Let me spell it out as you come towards the end. This is what it means to live the crucified life. The cross is a Trinitarian event. As the Bible warns you, "Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring" (, God says, "I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live; turn back, turn back from your evil ways, for why will you die…?" Personal Benefit #3 – You have the personal power to do anything (Ephesians 1:19-20, 3:20; Philippians 4:13). Now, all those for whom he died could be reconciled to God without any religious trappings. Jesus was under no such curse, yet in order to satisfy the demands of divine justice, he bore the curse of the law in full. Yet the church is not based on the moral example Jesus set, nor on his death, but on his resurrection. What do the cross and resurrection mean for us? But if you turn to Jesus and trust him to save you, he will release you from the burden of trying to get right with God by your own efforts and give you the "rest" you need. (2) He has reigned since in power above. To those who were concerned about their eternal destiny, Jesus said, "Whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. When Jesus became accountable for the sins of others he was punished as though he had committed them, and he bore that punishment both in his body and in his soul. ", [Editor's note: Taken from "Why the Cross?" If God exists, and if He created the universe and has power over it, then He has power to raise the dead. Darby Bible Translation. Divine Mercy 101: Elements of the Devotion. The Cross and the Resurrection. Jesus said that he had come to "give his life as a ransom for many" (Mark 10:45). to know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being conformed to his death, English Revised Version. The cross is the key that unlocks our hearts and reopens our connection with our Creator. Only hours before, when his closest friends were about to desert him, he had assured them, "I am not alone, for the Father is with me" (John 16:32). Although he was crucified "by the hands of lawless men," his death was "according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God" (Acts 2:23). About a year before his death three of his disciples were given a glimpse of his divine glory and Jesus "spoke of his departure, which he was about to accomplish at Jerusalem" (Luke 9:31). For 2,000 years this has been its driving force and, The first Christian church was known as "the Way" (, ), but if Jesus had remained in the grave "the Way" would have become a dead end! What Do the Cross and Resurrection Mean for Us? When a ransom has been paid, the captives are set free or redeemed, and this is what happens to those for whom Jesus gave his life. He issues the same invitation today. To be justified means to be made right with God for time and eternity. THE PURPOSE AND POWER OF HIS RESURRECTION. Firstly, it is a genuine and loving invitation. It showed him to be everything he claimed to be. For the Joy Set Before Us In other words, for the joy that was set before Paul, he sang in the jails and loved the jailers. A few years ago it was all the rage for some Christians to wear a badge saying, ‘Smile, God loves you', but, as a friend of mine said at the time, ‘It would be more truthful to wear one saying, "Frown, you're under judgment.". Everything is different because he has done so. As the Bible puts it, "God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God" (2 Corinthians 5:21). As the Bible warns you, "Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring" (Proverbs 27:1). Before Jesus rose from the dead his followers hid behind locked doors "for fear of the Jews" (, Six independent witnesses record Jesus appearing after his death in eleven separate incidents over a period of forty days. I have never forgotten that. As C. S. Lewis put it: [Jesus] has forced open a door that has been locked since the death of the first man. Jesus was "imprisoned" by death on behalf of those in whose place he was acting, but when he had paid sin's penalty in full, "God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him" (Acts 2:24).

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