Three Days Later
Easter or Resurrection Sunday as many call it is a wonderful day. It’s reality is Christianity 101. The basis of what we believe. This past Sunday has been a first in a number of years that it hadn’t even rained. It was sunny and 80 degrees. Spring is such a beautiful time of year when flowers start blooming and hibernating animals start waking up to start looking for food. Within nature, it’s basically New Year's Day. If it were truly this time of year that this incredible event happened, I honestly could not think of a better time.
Remember that Jesus arrived on the scene during the Old Testament time. Sacrifices were still going on and Solomon’s temple was still in use.Tradition was in full affect. It is what He brought with Him that ushered in the New Testament and what He did that closed the Old.
The salvation that Jesus brought reached further than just the forgiveness of sins. It transcended time and space. Now, that may sound a tad SyFy, but here is my meaning: It transcended time by going back into the past and forgiving all sin since birth. It transcends space because Jesus was sent from Heaven to earth offering us eternal life with Him in Heaven.
The difference between the religions of this world and Christianity is three days.
Now this is a pretty outlandish story if you really think about it. This Son of GOD came to earth to be the perfect sacrifice. Born of a virgin. He fulfilled scripture even up to His death on the cross between two common thieves. Up to now, a very gifted man could have done most the same as what Jesus did. I mean, anyone can get followers. Most anyone could author a doctrine. Anyone can be whipped and beaten. Let’s be honest, anyone can be crucified and die on a cross.
Now, we discussed what makes Christianity the One true path to salvation versus all the others that believe that they are as well? People in other religions are sincere in their walk thinking they have the way. Religion may offer a way, but we have the Way. So, what does this mean?
Thank the LORD our story doesn't stop there. The difference between the religions of this world and Christianity is three days. Why three days? Let's look at what happened while Jesus was on the cross first. He hung between two thieves. One thief wanted off the cross, but the other wanted free. He saw who Jesus was and believed. Jesus said, “This day you shall be with me in Paradise.” Now, there is something interesting about the spiritual world and the physical one. These two worlds are polar opposites. In one world, if we eat too much we get fat. In the other, if we are not fat we are neither healthy nor strong. In one world, we must eat to keep our strength, while in the other, we deny food (fast) to get strength and power from on high. The list goes on, but that is another blog post.
Picture now, Jesus on the cross and he is about to close out the Old Testament with three words. “It is finished.” This is the end of an age and the start of something mind blowingly new. It's the end of the age of prophets and the beginning or rather, restoration of a personal relationship with our Creator. No more intercessors between us and our LORD. We can now go straight to Jesus and He is the Intercessor for us to to GOD Himself. The veil of separation has been rent in two and we now can walk where no common man was able to before, straight into the Holy of Holies. This changes everything. When Jesus died, the impossible happened. No more sacrifices needed, for He was the ultimate and final sacrifice. Sins were no longer put off, but forgiven. He conquered the grave.
"I am He that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I AM ALIVE FOR EVERMORE, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death." (Rev.1:18)
There was no forgiveness of sin, as in redemption, in the Old Testament. So, according to scripture, the righteous went to Abraham’s bosom. A place used as a holding cell. It’s a section of hell that is without torment for those awaiting redemption. Jesus ministered to those in prison and was in the earth for three days and three nights.
It is also interesting that upon the death of of Jesus that the dead came to life and climbed out of their graves. What a sight that must have been. These people were believers and got a chance to be a witness of Him in a very unique way.
“Then, behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth quaked, and the rocks were split, and the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; and coming out of the graves after His resurrection, they went into the holy city and appeared to many.” (Matt. 27:51:53)
What a great representation of the resurrection. Jesus did not bring resurrection, He WAS and IS the resurrection.
So, if you look to feel good for a while then most any religion will do. If you are looking to feel happy by doing good works, then there are plenty out there for that. However, if you are looking for a personal encounter, if you are looking for truth, if you are looking for the meaning of life, if you want to know Who your creator is, if you seek eternal life, if you want to know if there is more to this life, if you want to get rid of your guilt, if you want to know what it’s like to be truly free, if you want to know how to smile from the inside out, then come to Jesus. He is the answer to every question and this great equation we call life. He is ALL of this and more, all because of what happened... three days later.