For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. -John 3:16 (NIV)
So, Jesus was betrayed, mocked, scourged, and crucified. He took all the sins of the world into Himself, was even separated from His Father, and died. He was buried in a tomb, which was even secured with a seal on the stone before the tomb entrance, and a guard was posted there. (The chief priests and Pharisees were afraid Jesus’ disciples would come and steal His body away, claiming He had risen.)
Well, guess what?
At dawn on Sunday, a violent earthquake occurred as an angel descended from Heaven, rolled back the stone, and sat on it. The guards were so afraid they became like dead men. The angel told the women (Mary Magdalene and the other Mary) to not be frightened, and to tell the disciples that Jesus had risen, and was going ahead of them into Galilee.
Jesus did indeed meet the disciples in Galilee, and issued forth the Great Commission: to spread the Good News, baptize in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, and to spread His teachings. Finally, He assured them—and us—that He is always with them, to the very end of the age.
Jesus was the final sacrificial lamb
Before Jesus, the Jews would bring blood sacrifices, like lambs, to confess and have their sins forgiven. But Jesus, the Lamb of God, was the final and ultimate sacrifice for all of our sins. The Lamb of God’s blood washes away the sins of the world, so we no longer have to make blood sacrifices to God.
When the temple veil was torn, Jesus destroyed the religious barrier between us and God…and Jesus is also the one and only path and bridge between us and God. We can now take our prayers directly to the Lord.
The story continues
We now await His return, and only He knows when that will happen. Till then, we honor His amazing sacrifice for us by making Him known in all we say and do, till the whole world hears!
Easter dinner prayer
I wrote this prayer to say over our dinner. If you’re needing words for yours, I hope they might help.
We come before You with thanks and praise, and for all of Your gifts and blessings. We thank You for bringing us together as a family to celebrate You not just in prayer, but in our walk as a family.
We leave at Your feet our burdens, and confess and repent of our hardheartedness. We ask for, and thank You, for Your forgiveness, and gladly take up Your easy yoke and light burden.
As always, we come boldly before Your throne of grace and ask You, in Jesus’ name, knowing it will be done, that You will strengthen and align us to Your will, and to Your glory. We thank You for making a way, Lord. Please show us the way.
Some 2000 years ago, Your Word became flesh and lived among us, and out of an unfailing and unfathomable love, Your Son became a ransom for many. As the final sacrificial Lamb, His blood washed away our sins…He defeated death…and He forged a direct path between us and the Father.
When Jesus rose, He issued His Great Commission: to spread the Good News to every corner of the earth. To walk this walk and carry out this mission, Lord, help us remember that our ministry begins with our solitary walk with You. You gave all to save us; help us give our all to make You known to the ends of the earth. Help us to live in a manner worthy of the calling you have placed on our lives.
Please bless this food, Lord, to the nourishment of our bodies, so that we may have the strength and energy to serve and glorify you on this day.
In Jesus’ holy and powerful name we pray.
Third Day’s “Victorious” reminds us that His death was victory over sin and death, and everlasting life for us!