Resurrection, it’s a New Day
Isn’t it interesting how the more things change, the more people want them to stay the way they were? In a way, I understand traditionalism myself. It’s not that I don’t respect the need for change. I mean, as time moves along, so does the changing of the guard, so to speak. Still, I will resist being just shoved aside for this same progression. Certain things are quality, timeless. Things like: not resenting another has a viewpoint; the capacity to maintain your own perspective; the ability to see another’s position without taking on a sense of being belittled yourself, which really is our choice; the idea of not being threatened by difference, and even supporting it, as far at it validates life; and the wisdom to tell all this apart.
In my most recent editorial, the importance of putting our best foot forward was offered, recollecting the way things were, good and bad, taking the best and starting over. We can only change the things we can and then simply leave the rest by the wayside.
In many senses, this is what the celebration of Easter is all about. But to properly understand it, we must look into it and accept its reach from beyond time. Here’s why: those who don’t have a personal revelation of Christ’s purposes on the cross, struggle with the whole contrast of it all. It appears, to them, to be a fool’s errand, ending in the tragedy of a very compassionate man dying, with no more result than a footnote in history, commemorated by many who revel in the past.
The profound thing is, this sacrifice was really a timeless intervention, through a moment of time-past which changed the path of reality for everyone’s future, even ours and beyond. It was an act of Love’s insight passing all human understanding, enabling so much more, if one will open up to its reality.
To offer some perspective and insight to Christians out there, about the struggles others have who don’t get this; they actually cannot see it, because they do not have the power of this revelation residing in them. This limit is not their fault. It only comes from the entrance of Christ when asked into the human heart. Once there, He imparts personal revelation of the meanings which reside in scripture as we read it; this is known as the illumination of God’s word.
In Hebrews 11:6b it says, “for whoever comes [near] to God must [necessarily] believe that God exists and that He rewards those who [earnestly and diligently] seek Him.” (AMP)
It is not just an intellectual action that happens when we dig things out of the Bible. There is still some limited benefit to doing this, but it is an appeal made to the heart of a human being, by God’s own Spirit as we read. This, of course, winds up occupying the thoughts as a result and roots itself even deeper.
It’s very dumbfounding when an answer shows up, like Jesus’ sacrifice, while the problem isn’t even known to exist.
In 1 Corinthians 1:27a scripture says, “God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound [those who think they are] wise;” (KJV)
We ‘intelligent’ people often choose to avoid the confrontation with reality. This will challenge a person’s view of the world, so we attempt to dismiss the truth when it doesn’t line up with our assumption of life. It’s really a fear response to what is not known. But the sad results are, this can keep a person separate from what is offered. If a person chooses not to be open-minded, they can never see how a thing would play out in their life.
For those who don’t believe ‘God Is’; well, then it’s no wonder they don’t get proof. “The proof is in the pudding,” not just the idea there is some, or in the reading of the recipe. It’s often said, “You have to be open to something before you can begin to see it.” Much like soil receiving a seed, a birth happens out of the mutual acceptance and interaction of the two. This is why a Christian’s life is different than others’ around; it’s Spiritual mechanics, operating under an interactive response to God. This can only happen when each person has found how to accept peace with their maker and how to live a life reflective of that. Jesus came as the answer to that question of how.
That brings it all to the point.
This Friday, we will be celebrating thankfulness to God, who came in the form of Jesus Christ: you know, in the flesh like us, to take His own judgment on sin, in His own body, in our place.
God set things up so Christ could act as our substitute. While God unleashed his destroying judgment upon sin in our lives, Christ was dying from the punishment of it; our death on the cross.
This was not so much about controlling the actions of sin; of course, that will naturally follow anyhow, because we can sometimes stop ourselves from acting falsely in certain moments. It was more about freeing us from the dominance of the nature that provides the impulse within to be untrue to ourselves. Then, if we don’t accept this exchange, to play with a quote from Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Act 1, Scene 3, “So it follows, as does the night the day, thou canst,” really be true to God or anyone.
The desire to express gratitude to God, even if we don’t know who that is, is built in us. We find ourselves under fire, or after crises of various kinds, and in relieved response, naturally expressing gratefulness to God. This is a good thing. It’s an unguarded uncomplicated thing, and an act of our true selves. Friday is a day of release from burdens.
On Saturday, the Sabbath, the day of rest, Christ’s body rested in the tomb. Like in the eye of the storm, it’s the most calm place, the calm before the reality to come.
So on Sunday, this same Christ exploded from the grip of sin to put it’s power over us behind. Because He himself was guiltless of the sin, it could not hold Him, and He rose to new life, free from sin and death’s dominance. He now offers this Resurrection Life to us, if we will ask Him to give it. A simple trade, our sin-riddled life for His life, impervious to the control of sin. Our life led to death but His life leads to the source and more Life, God. What liberty! What Fairness, more than fairness! That’s Grace! God completely understands our inability to overcome sin’s driving impulse by ourselves.
Asking Christ to rule in our lives is a truly free choice. Jesus’ sacrifice offers us eternal life; it is to be received here now in this life, while there is still time. If you will see it, wherever you are, just say thank you to Jesus for dying in place of your sinful life, release to Him your old life and ask him to exchange it for His. He will enter your spirit and give you His resurrected life, and it’s a new day, you cannot lose!