On Easter morning, thousands of people put on their nicest dresses, ties, and hairstyles and went to a Church gathering. Many had big meals with family, and continue to celebrate all day long. As you go to these celebrations and church services, you may be asking, why does Easter really matter? Why does the Church celebrate something that happened 2000 years ago? Does it still matter today, in the 21st century? And if so, what does it have to do with me?
If you are asking these questions, Iâ€™m so glad youâ€™re here. Let me tell you, if you believe the message of Easter, which is the resurrection of Jesus Christ, your life will be completely altered forever. So with that, letâ€™s look at why Easter is important.
The entire Bible tells one big, continuous story that points to Jesus. In Genesis, we read about God creating everything; the earth, space, oceans, land, plants, and animals, night and dayâ€¦and the peak of His creation, man and woman. God created us in His image, and He created us to live in relationship with Him.
However, we decided to rebel against God. This tore us from being in a perfect relationship with Him and set us up for a life of pain and death.
Despite our rebellion, God had a plan to restore a relationship with us and to make everything right again. In Genesis 3, God promises to one day send Someone to defeat sin and death, and save His people. In Genesis 3:15, God said to the devil, â€œI will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.”
This foreshadowing of Jesusâ€™ coming continues throughout the Old Testament. God makes a promise to a man named Abraham, that He will make a great nation of his family, and one day, this promised savior would come from his family line. This family became the nation of Israel.
The rest of the Old Testament shows how God pursues Israel, despite their constant rebellion against Him. Then, we come to the book of Matthew. A virgin became pregnant and named the baby Jesus. This baby was fully God and fully man. He lived a sinless life and modeled what true life looks like. He spent the majority of his first 30 years of life as a carpenter. He then became a Jewish rabbi and began to disciple 12 apprentices. He spent the next three years of his life preaching, teaching, performing miracles, and healing people.
Jesus’ message was scandalous. The religious leaders and government officials were threatened by Him. They devised a plan to have Him killed. He was stripped, beaten, and then hung on a cross to die. He was put in a tomb, and His followers mourned. Was He not who He said He was? Was He not the One promised in Genesis that would save us?
Three days passed, and all hope seemed lost. A few of the women who followed Jesus went to the tomb where His body lay, but they were shocked to find the stone rolled away, and an empty tomb. Instead, there were two angels there to greet them. The women fell to the floor, terrified and confused. Â
Luke 24:5-8 says, â€œAnd as they were frightened and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, â€˜Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen. Remember how he told you, while he was till in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men and be crucified and on the third day rise.â€™”
Jesus paid the price for our sin, conquered sin and death, and now reigns victoriously! He promised that He would one day come back to Earth, to ultimately restore all things. He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right-hand of the Father, where He will be until He returns to Earth again.
That is what we celebrate on Easter. If you trust in Jesus and follow Him, you will have eternal life in Jesus. He invites you into His Kingdom, and that life starts as soon as you turn to Him. When you enter the Kingdom of God, His Spirit comes inside you and helps you to walk in intimacy with Him, and newness of life. Romans 8:11 says, â€œIf the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.”
This life that Jesus offers isnâ€™t easy. Itâ€™s messy, scandalous, and different than anything the world has to offer. It is the only way to a life that offers true life, satisfaction, and joy.
In John 16:33, Jesus said, â€œI have said these things to you, that you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”
I donâ€™t know what youâ€™re facing today, but Jesus promised we would face tribulation in this world. It could be a lost job, a scary diagnosis, family strife, an unplanned pregnancy, fill-in-the-blankâ€¦No matter what youâ€™re going through, cling to Jesus as your hope! He has overcome the world and is bigger than anything you can face in this life!
So as your Easter festivities wind down and you go back to your daily life, I challenge you to look to Jesus. If you have not yet turned to Him and begun walking in the life He offers, would you consider it? He is so much better than anything this world can give you. He loves you and is eagerly waiting for you to call out to Him.
â€œBehold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.” Revelation 3:20