9 For God chose to save us through our Lord Jesus Christ, not to pour out His anger on us. 10 Christ died for us so that, whether we are dead or alive when He returns, we can live with Him forever. 11 So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing. (1Thess. 5:9-11 NLT)
THREE DAYS…FOR US
Hello Redeemed of the Lord! It’s Easter Monday, the day after Resurrection Sunday; three days after Good Friday. In one “long weekend”, the whole of the Christian message of Good News is summed up. This Easter Weekend has been different from the last two years, since we have been able to gather at full capacity, without masks, to celebrate the pinnacle of the Christian Calendar, the death and resurrection of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ! There was more excitement and joy this time around! And, yesterday, for the first time in a very long time that I can remember, the grocery stores were actually closed on Easter Sunday. The city was a ghost town. It reminded me of the Easters of old, when all the stores were closed on Good Friday and Easter Sunday. This Easter weekend was one of worship, feasting and fellowshipping with friends and family. Three days of focusing on the main event of the Christian life; and ultimately the meaning of life itself.
When I was younger, I convened a baseball league and coached a team. We would play for the whole season, and then in one three-day finals event, the whole season would wrap up, and the winner was decided through a series of elimination rounds. It was a gruelling 3 days of baseball, but worth the effort to obtain the coveted prized trophy. Then the whole thing would wrap up with a huge celebration- 600 kids, plus parents, coaches, volunteers, etc. You can imagine that it was a big event. Three days with lots of planning, co-ordinating, effort and execution; then it was over for the season. We had achieved our goal, put in our time, endured till the end and received the prize.
Three days! A lot can happen in three days! On a larger scale, Jesus Christ could be crucified for us! The wrath of God could be satisfied, and the price of redemption paid in full. The Savior could lay in a tomb, and at some point, go down into the depths of Hades and release the saints held there, come back and rise from the dead…all in three days! It was all a well planned and executed achievement, orchestrated before the foundation of the world. God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, convened an incredible 3 day event. You can read all the details in the Gospels!
There was a battle that we could not win – no matter how hard we tried. The opposing team played dirty by using every tactic in the book to trip us up; to make sure there was no chance of winning. The more we put in our own effort to win, the further we got from the prize. Then God the Son said, “put me in Coach”, I’ll win the prize for them”. It was a gruelling battle. Our Champion was bloodied and beaten on the first day – for sure it looked like He lost the prize. But thank God it was a three-day event! On the third day there was an incredible comeback – totally unexpected – but a completely victorious comeback! The enemy was defeated, and the victory was pronounced! Our Substitute had won the victory for us! Wrath averted, prize obtained! “O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?”
FOR US! To save US! To give US eternal life! One Man; one three-day mission; completed successfully for US! Doesn’t that blow your mind! Oh what love! Oh what sacrifice! Three days changed everything for US who have put our faith in Him! Celebrate! Celebrate forever with your God! Praise Him for winning a battle you could not win! And…most of all, share this three-day event with everyone you can. Good News of this magnitude cannot be contained! Live this week like you’re going to live forever!