Shocking. Awesome. Amazing. Humbling. Thankful. Filled with awe…
I honestly struggle to find words to describe how Easter makes me feel. To think, that God would love mankind, would love me so much, that He would come in the person of Christ Jesus to redeem those who had rebelled against Him, leaves me with no words to express my state.
Easter Sunday, I shared with the congregation the story of a message sent to England following The Battle of Waterloo on June 18, 1815. Duke Wellington had led the English and allied armies against the seemingly unstoppable advances of the French military, under the command of Napoleon. A tower watchman waited for word to be signaled by light from a ship approaching the English shore. But just as the ship approached, a fog began to settle in. Through the fog, the watchman read the message:
"W-E-L-L-I-N-G-T-O-N --D-E-F-E-A-T-E-D- -."
Word quickly spread of the defeat. Shock, grief, dismay, and fear spread as those who had put all their hope in this battle believed all was lost.
But then the fog lifted. The watchman saw the message again, but this time saw it in full;
"W-E-L-L-I-N-G-T-O-N --D-E-F-E-A-T-E-D -- T-H-E—E-N-E-M-Y”
This past week we walked with Jesus for a week of His life. On Palm Sunday Christ Jesus entered Jerusalem and the crowds loved Him! The KING had come! “Hosanna to the Son of David!” they shouted (Matthew 21). Day by day we walked with Jesus through the gospel message until Friday, when Jesus was betrayed by one of His own, tried and found guilty for crimes He did not commit, and sentenced to death by mankind whom He came to save. Many of the same people who had shouted “Hosanna” which translates “Save, Please” were now demanding; “Crucify Him!”
Sentenced to death, even death on the cross, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, died in the full view of the public for all to see. The message that day indeed appeared to be; “J-E-S-U-S---D-E-F-E-A-T-E-D- --"
The fog of grief, shock, dismay, and fear was certainly over those who followed Jesus. All their hope had been in Him, and now He was dead, and His body lay in the tomb…
But, three days later, on Sunday morning, the fog lifted, and the full message was revealed for all to see!
“J-E-S-U-S --D-E-F-E-A-T-E-D -- T-H-E – E-N-E-M-Y”
I pray you see this message clearly, as the fog of the world would love to cover it up: Christ Jesus is alive!
He is the King of kings and the Lord of lords. He has overcome sin and death, and He is coming again to judge the living and the dead. He alone holds the keys to death and Hades and the power to save those who call on His name in faith! (Rev 19:16, 1:18, Acts 4:12)
What does this mean?
For those who love Him: Rejoice with eternal joy that your Savior lives and resides at the right hand of God the Father as an intercessor for you! (Romans 8:34)
For those who doubt, decline, or despise Christ’s message of salvation: Tremble in fear of the mighty hand of God. Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom (Proverbs 9:10). Repent of your past ways. Fear God more than you love
your sin and pray that God will open your eyes to see, your ears to see, and your heart to trust in faith the Word of God. For
the day of judgment is coming (Psalm 2).
“But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God” (John 1:12).
HE IS RISEN – and He will reign forever! All glory and honor to our great Savior, God, and King!!
In the hope of Christ,