This is what Easter is all about. The resurrection is our notification that the transaction is complete. Jesus has paid in full the debt for our sin, and the Father has accepted the payment. The resurrected Jesus has entered into his kingdom in his resurrected body so that we may be raised to life and freed from death and bondage to sin.
But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. (Ephesians 2:4-10 ESV)
And he said to them, “Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has risen; he is not here. See the place where they laid him. (Mark 16:6 ESV)
Let the celebration begin! He is risen! Death is conquered! The bonds of sin and the power of the evil one are broken! Let us enter into the new creation by the resurrection of the Son of God! He is the first fruits of the new creation and guarantee of our inheritance!
The tomb is empty! He is risen!
I have always wondered about the silence of that Saturday Sabbath that followed Jesus’ crucifixion. For a day, the world stood still and waited in a state of breathless anticipation. Would the horror of Friday be the end? Was God dead?
The disciples hid in the upper room, fearing they would meet the same fate as their master. The rest of the city went about their usual Passover week Sabbath practices. The priests were likely anxiously awaiting the end of the Sabbath so they could mend the torn curtain of the Temple. The Sanhedrin celebrated the removal of another threat to their power. Jesus’ body lay lifeless in the grave. It was a silent Saturday.
Torn the temple curt’n in two
The blood paid full the price
The death of God had paid the dues
That men might receive life
The restoration thus begun
Creation groaning loudly
The Father killed the only Son
For men who looked on proudly
Died he the death that we deserve
The Father’s wrath poured out
The gavel struck, the court adjourned
The soldiers took him down
His body laid inside a tomb
With no time to embalm him
The one proclaimed “King of the Jews”
Death had now consumed him
Below are some links to videos and music, as well as some local Good Friday events. If you’re looking for a place Sunday morning for Easter, come join us at Fellowship Louisville at 10 AM. We’d love to have you!
SM Lockridge’s classic “Sunday’s Coming”
We’ll be singing John Mark McMillan’s “Death in His Grave” this Sunday.
Here’s a song called Drove the Nails I wrote and performed with my band in college. (Warning: this is ROCK music!)
What happened on the first Good Friday?
A Word for this Holy Weekend
Almost two thousand years ago, a bruised and bloody half-naked man was led outside the small capital city of a tiny, but notoriously difficult Roman province to a hillside, named the skull. Together with two other criminals, he was to be executed as “the King of the Jews,” a sarcastic title meant both as a jab at those who sought his death and as the accusation against him. By all appearances, it was an ordinary Passover weekend. Lambs would be slaughtered as the Jewish people gathered together in Jerusalem to commemorate the day the Lord led them out of slavery in Egypt. Little did they know, a greater salvation was taking place just outside the city.
As we enter this weekend, does it seem ordinary to you? Does it seem like just another Good Friday service–just another Easter Sunday? Could we also be missing what is taking place before our very eyes? Right in front of us is the central event of all of history! God, in Christ, is redeeming a people and restoring the creation to a state of perfection in relationship to its Creator. The death and resurrection of Christ was a cosmic event, bringing together heaven and earth.
The hope of history was a man hanging on a tree. We proclaim that same hope this weekend as we gather together. Who will you invite? Who will hear? Who will be redeemed, and participate in the great story of the ages? How shall we live in light of the death and resurrection of the King of Glory? Let us pray and worship and wait in hope for He is risen, and we shall be raised with him!