WE CELEBRATE THE CROSS OF CHRIST!
Jesus was guilty of no crime and had done incredible good, yet he was crucified, the most painful and horrendous death in the ancient world.
His hands and feet were nailed to intersecting wooden beams, which were then lifted up and placed in the ground. Every time Jesus needed to breathe, he had to lift himself up, tearing His flesh in the process. Every moment on the cross, Jesus was in excruciating pain and was mocked, ridiculed and spat upon. Jesus also had a crown of thorns placed on His head and His side was pierced with a sword. Blood poured out of his body. Finally, after such horrible treatment and intense pain Jesus died.
We celebrate the cross because it paid our sin debt and brings about forgiveness.
HIS LIFE, DEATH AND RESURRECTION LITERALLY CHANGED THE COURSE OF HUMAN HISTORY.
- Jesus experienced the ultimate setback and then had the greatest comeback of all time.
1 Early on Sunday morning, as the new day was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went out to visit the tomb. 2 Suddenly there was a great earthquake! For an angel of the Lord came down from heaven, rolled aside the stone, and sat on it. 3 His face shone like lightning, and his clothing was as white as snow. 4 The guards shook with fear when they saw him, and they fell into a dead faint. 5 Then the angel spoke to the women. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I know you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. 6 He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead, just as he said would happen. Come, see where his body was lying. 7 And now, go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and he is going ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there. Remember what I have told you.” 8 The women ran quickly from the tomb. They were very frightened but also filled with great joy, and they rushed to give the disciples the angel’s message. Matthew 28:1-8 NLT
THE GREATEST COMEBACK IN HISTORY HAD TAKEN PLACE!
- Death had been defeated.
- The grave could not hold him.
- Sin had been defeated.
- Satan had been defeated.
Even the disciples did not believe until they became eyewitnesses of Jesus’ resurrection.
Jesus Appears to His Disciples
19 That Sunday evening the disciples were meeting behind locked doors because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. Suddenly, Jesus was standing there among them! “Peace be with you,” he said. 20 As he spoke, he showed them the wounds in his hands and his side. They were filled with joy when they saw the Lord! John 20:19-20 NLT
Jesus walked around Jerusalem for 40 days.
1 In my first book I told you, Theophilus, about everything Jesus began to do and teach 2 until the day he was taken up to heaven after giving his chosen apostles further instructions through the Holy Spirit. 3 During the forty days after he suffered and died, he appeared to the apostles from time to time, and he proved to them in many ways that he was actually alive. And he talked to them about the Kingdom of God. Acts 1:1-3 NLT
Apostle Paul, along with 500 witnesses, saw Jesus.
3 I passed on to you what was most important and what had also been passed on to me. Christ died for our sins, just as the Scriptures said. 4 He was buried, and he was raised from the dead on the third day, just as the Scriptures said. 5 He was seen by Peter and then by the Twelve. 6 After that, he was seen by more than 500 of his followers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died.7 Then he was seen by James and later by all the apostles. 8 Last of all, as though I had been born at the wrong time, I also saw him. 1 Corinthians 15:3-8 NLT
Have you seen Jesus? Have you had an encounter with Jesus?
5 Since we have been united with him in his death, we will also be raised to life as he was. 6 We know that our old sinful selves were crucified with Christ so that sin might lose its power in our lives. We are no longer slaves to sin. 7 For when we died with Christ we were set free from the power of sin. 8 And since we died with Christ, we know we will also live with him. 9 We are sure of this because Christ was raised from the dead, and he will never die again. Death no longer has any power over him. 10 When he died, he died once to break the power of sin. But now that he lives, he lives for the glory of God. 11 So you also should consider yourselves to be dead to the power of sin and alive to God through Christ Jesus. Romans 6:5-11 NLT
You can overcome any setback through the strength God gives.
Next Steps for me today…
- To believe!
- To put my faith in Jesus for salvation.
- To get up and start my comeback.