This time of the year is an exciting time as new life springs up with the warmer weather, at least in Ohio. Easter is also an exciting time for Christians as we celebrate Jesus Christ. As we prepare for Easter 2014 I thought I would share some thoughts on the significance of what Jesus did that causes us to be celebrating over 2,000 years later.
- Jesus died in our place – This is known as substitution, Jesus subbed in for us. He took our punishment for us. The Bible tells us in 2 Corinthians 5:21 “He was made sin for me.” and in 1 Peter 2:24 “He bore my sin in his body on the cross.” What happened on the cross was personal. Jesus the perfect, sinless Son of God had your sin put on him. All the garbage, all the junk and ugliness he assumed it all.
- Jesus made us right with God – This is known as justification or in legal terms we were acquitted and found not guilty by God the Judge. Acts 13:39 says “Through him (Jesus) everyone who believes is justified from everything you could not be justified from by the law of Moses.”
- Jesus made peace with God possible – This is known as reconciliation, which means bringing together two people who have suffered a breakdown in their relationship. Jesus, by his death on the cross, gave us the opportunity to have our relationship with God healed and renewed. 2 Corinthians 5:19 says “God was in Christ, making peace between our world and himself…God did not hold the world guilty of its sins. And he gave us this message of peace.” So Jesus created a new bridge between us and God that had been broken.
- Jesus made us a part of God’s family – This is known as adoption, meaning God went through a lot in order to bring us into his family. He considers us as his own children. In Romans 8:17 it says “And since we are his children, we will share his treasures-for all God gives to his Son Jesus is now ours too.”
- Jesus purchased our salvation with his blood – This is known as redemption, which means being set free. In 1 Peter 1:18-19 it says this “God paid a ransom to save you from the impossible road to heaven which your fathers tried to take, and the ransom he paid was not mere gold or silver, as you very well know. But he paid for you with the precious lifeblood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God.”
- Jesus satisfied God’s justice – This is known as propitiation which means that Jesus completely satisfied or fulfilled all of God’s righteous demands. God demands holiness and perfection and Jesus satisfied that demand. in 1 John 2:2 it says “He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for our sins but also for the sins of the whole world.”
- Jesus sent our sins away from us – This means forgiveness. In Colossians 2:13 it says “When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins.” God put all of our sins on Jesus, even though he was innocent and pure. When our sins are put on him, we never see the guilt of them again. God’s forgiveness is final and complete.
So there you have it, that is what Jesus Christ did for us. That is why we celebrate so big during Easter, because all of this is amazing, unbelievable, undeserved and completely free. Salvation is not by works but by grace, it’s not initiated by us but by God and its not an afterthought with God, it is his eternal plan.