Matthew 28:6 He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.
On Sunday Durham churches were filled with members and visitors making their annual Easter trek. This is one Sunday of the year that Pastors can expect full pews. In many cases, churches were filled to capacity and if the regulars didn’t arrive earlier enough, they probably lost their favorite seats.
Easter Sunday or Resurrection Sunday as it sometimes affectionately known by Christians, means different things to different groups of people. For many, it’s a holiday in which unbelievers flock to churches for the one and only time of the year outfitted in their brand new Easter gear. For these one-timers, Easter Sunday is nothing more than tradition. It’s something they have been doing since they were little children. Many haven’t seen the inside of a church since the previous Easter and won’t again to the next. But for born-again believers, Easter is a celebration of the death, burial and most of all, the resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. For us, Resurrection Sunday comemmorates the greatest day in history–the day when Jesus rose from the grave with all power in his hand.
Jesus’ resurrection is one of the foundational truths of the Christian religion. The entire faith is established upon this event. Christ’s resurrection from the dead is what separates Him from idol gods. No other god had or has the ability to die and live again or give life, for that matter. But, by this very event, Jesus proved He was God. He showed the skeptics of the time that he has the power to give life. As a matter of fact, He is life. In John 14:6 He says I am the way, truth and life. No man comes to the Father, but by me.
His resurrection also fulfilled prophecy. He, himself, prophesied to his disciples that he would rise again on the third day of his burial. Prophets of the Old Testament also prophesied about this event. The fulfillment of the prophecy, once again, proves Jesus’ deity and distinguishes Him from idol gods.
Jesus’ death was significant because it reconciled sinful man to God. Sin, introduced by Adam’s disobedience, separated us from God. According to scripture, the penalty for sin is death and the only way man could be redeemed or forgiven was by the offering of an unblemished sacrifice to God. Hebrews 9:22 says and almost all things by the law are cleansed with blood;and without shedding of blood is no remission or forgiveness. From this scripture we can conclude that the blood Jesus shed on Calvary blotted out our sins and served as the payment for them. For those who believe, we are no longer debtors to sin and can live free from the threat of its penalty. Because of Jesus, we can expect life instead of death. Hallelujah! He is risen!
John 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life.