Friday, March 27, 2015

"It is Finished"

Within the next few days, many of us will participate in dying Easter eggs, egg hunts and eat a few Cadbury eggs.  While all of that is fun and great traditions, Easter has nothing to do with an egg.
I looked up the definition of holiday out of curiosity.  Merriam-Webster defines it as a special day of celebration: a day when most people do not have to work.  We view holidays as a free day away from the office. A time to overindulge on ham and the fixin's while surrounded by family. Those are all great as well, but, the reason we have a holiday, in this case, Easter, is because it is a holy day.
Most of us know the story of Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection. It is the ONLY reason we celebrate.  If we aren’t careful, we can hear it so much, it impacts us less.  That’s why it’s important to know and remember the details, as best we can, of what happened on those few days that would change our fate, for those who believe.
On the night before Jesus was to be crucified, He went to The Garden of Gethsemane to pray. He knew the torture He would have to face and He was overwhelmed with sorrow, to the point of death. (Matt. 26:38) In fact, he agonized so much He sweat drops of blood. While Jesus prayed, He asked God three separate times to take the cup of suffering away from him, yet he said let God’s will be done and not His.  He was then captured by Roman soldiers, which was when His physical torture began. To humiliate Him, they stripped him naked. To mock Him, He was given a scarlet robe and scepter. He was scourged with a whip, of at least three strands as much as three feet long, with pieces of bone or lead balls at the end. The flogging was so violent; it tore open the flesh exposing veins and arteries. Thorn branches, around an inch long, were driven into his scalp. They spit in His face as the blood poured from his head and ran down his body.  Jesus was then forced to carry His own cross to Golgotha. The same cross He would be nailed to and executed on. Iron pegs, roughly 7-9 inches long, were driven into his hands and feet. While hanging on the cross, Jesus asked The Father to forgive them, the same people who killed him, for they knew not what they did. Moments before His final breath, in separation from God, Jesus asked: “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” He then said “It is finished” and His spirit was released.
Can you imagine watching your child be tortured and left to die? The Bible said it pained God so much, He had to turn away. 
This is how much God loves us all.  So much, He sent His one and only son to take our place and die this painful, gruesome death for our sin. He was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole.  He was whipped so we could be healed. (Isaiah 53:5)          
Why would anyone celebrate the death of this man Jesus? Because, this is not where the story ends. It is only the beginning. Three days later, Christ was resurrected from the dead! There is no amount of technology or money on this earth that would be able to bring a dead man back to life.  Only the magnificent power of God Almighty.  Our debt was paid, scripture was fulfilled and Jesus Christ was vindicated!
As we get prepared to clothe ourselves in our Sunday best and listen to another Easter sermon, let the specifics break us and the outcome wake us to the glorious message of the life-saving gospel.  Jesus is risen! The tomb is empty! We are free from the grips of death.  That is why we do more than observe, we rejoice,this holiday called Easter. Because of Jesus, "It is Finished"!

Please take a moment to listen to the song below and just thank Jesus for who He is and ALL He's done for us.


No comments:

Post a Comment