On Easter Sunday millions of people will attend local churches throughout Arkansas, the United States, and the world. They will gather to remember the most significant events of history: the death and resurrection of Jesus the Christ.
Millions of lives have changed for the better because of these events, but the power for change does not come through mere reflection. The power of the death and resurrection of Jesus (called the Gospel in 1 Corinthians 15:1-4) is not imparted merely by remembering or even accepting the events as factual and historical. The power of the Gospel for changing lives is found in the application of the facts of His death and resurrection into the lives of those who believe in it.
The Memorial is important, but it has no power to change people if it is not allowed to make a difference in the daily lives of believers. Even if Christians have gathered and remembered this sacrifice and resurrection every Sunday even from the beginning of the church (see Acts 20:7-11 for example), this is no guarantee that the crucifixion and resurrection will have a practical impact on their lives without intentional personal application. If you want to be changed by the Gospel, you must learn to apply the Gospel into your life. There should be an intentional practical impact or the sacrifice will have no impact upon you. God will never force you to conform yourself to the image of Christ.
What is the practical impact of the resurrection? How should it affect you?
According to the Bible, the death and resurrection of Jesus was necessary for the redemption of humans who have sinned against the righteousness of God. (For information about this, please refer to Acts 2:22-39, Ephesians 1:7-10, etc.) Those who have heard the message of Jesus and believed it, who have responded to the message of the Gospel with repentance, confession, and baptism, these people should also live by the sacrifice and resurrection. As Paul the apostle wrote in Romans 6:4, “Therefore we were buried with Him 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” (New King James Version). If one chooses to celebrate the death and resurrection of Jesus, that one should seek to find practical application by deciding to live a different life–a life that reflects the new life provided by Jesus.
If you want to see your life grow more godly, you must understand that it will not happen by accident. The resurrection of Jesus must find relevant, practical applications in your life. These applications are written throughout the pages of the New Testament. These involve stopping the practices that the Bible prohibits and practicing those things it requires. (A good guide is found in Galatians 5:16-25 for starters.)
Here are a few appropriate questions to ask:
Has the death and resurrection of Jesus made the appropriate impact upon my life in the past?
Will I allow this sacrifice and resurrection to impact my life today and in the future?
Am I willing to look at what the Bible teaches and live it so that I can take full advantage of all that God has done for me?