Wednesday, April 1, 2009

He Is Not There! He Has Risen!

                     He Is Not There! He Has Risen!

As I sit here this Saturday morning  I remember what my mother would always say when the lilies would break the soil and bloom. She said it reminded her of Easter and Jesus rising from the dead. She always wanted lilies on Easter. She is like a lot of other Christians that depicted the lily as the emblem of the  Resurrection. White lilies bloomed where religious events took place, such as the Garden of Gethsemane, the Crucifixion, and the tomb of Jesus. What a honor this flower has and rightly so to be called the EASTER LILLY. Jesus is the lily of the valley.

I think about the pain, the sadness, the hurt,of knowing that my savior was beat, spit on, His hair pulled out, falsely accused, made fun of, it grieves my soul and I weep. Here these people, of that day, were in the very presents of God and denied Him. How sad! Near Easter every year I always remember, with great emotion, the Easter play,  by the youth,  at my church . It was over twenty years ago and I still remember it as it was yesterday. I have told this in a past commentary but I feel that it needs to be repeated. I can still feel the presents of The Holy spirit as I did that very day in that old country church!

My oldest son had the part of Christ and as he carried the cross on his shoulders down the isle he was being beaten with a whip by his cousin who was playing the part of a roman soldier. {There was no real hard and hurtful blows to my son}  As I watched my son being beat with the whip in this play I thought to myself; This is my son and it is only a play, but how Our Heavenly Father  must have felt as he watched from Heaven as His only begotten Son was being whipped, beat, and then crucified.  I cried uncontrollably and it was not just a few tears. I felt the spirit of the Lord all over me and to this day I’m always in remembrance of that day and that play. That was the day it hit me like a ton of bricks and I was greatly moved by the Holy Ghost. Some people might call it emotions, but I call it The Holy Ghost moving on me. It always feels so good when the Spirit quickens you. That play and The Holy Ghost moving on me will stay with me for the rest of my life. This was the punishment that Jesus took for you and me. Oh what joy it will be on that day when my Jesus I will see. The One who died for me {and you}. I want to fall at His feet and tell Him how much that I love him.

 By His strips we were healed, no kind of disease or sickness has no authority over The Lord’s child, He was wounded for our transgressions, {for all those past sins that was in our life He was beat and spit upon}, the chastisement of our peace was upon Him. { In other words He took our punishment and correction so we might be reconciled to God.} He was bruised for our iniquities, { The Hebrew meaning for bruised is: To crush and beat to pieces.} This my friend is what Jesus did for us. Don’t you love Him? That Old Rugged Cross made the difference.

 I’m reminded of three other events that took place that day of long ago. They happen for a reason. I like to get all the details of what ever I’m studying and it helps me to see all the picture. The first event was Pilate’s wife who told Pilate to have nothing to do with that just man because she had suffered many things in a dream about Him. { That word suffered means: To feel pain or distress, sustain loss or injury} did you ever stop to really think what that pain and distress or that loss was? What ever it was it was placed there by God. According to ancient history books her name was Claudia Procula and she later became a Christian. I’m sure that it was because of the Holy Ghost inspired dream that she became a believer.

Then there was the thief on the cross next to Jesus. A man who robbed and stole. Now what caused this thief to ask Jesus to remember him? He was not a follower of the Lord, but yet it was something there with in this man that caused him to call out to Jesus. Was it The Holy Ghost? I believe so. This thief believed and accepted Jesus as his savior and was that day is in paradise with our Lord.

Lastly there was The roman soldier {a centurion} who was guarding the cross on that sad day. This soldier, after seeing the earth quake, and the other things that where done, said along with the other people that were there: “ TRULY, THIS WAS THE SON OF GOD” He did not say a son of God, but The Son of God. According to ancient history books from that period of time this centurions name was Longinus. He became a devoted follower of Christ, preached the gospel, and died a martyr’s death. He was one who choose to suffer death rather than renounce the Lord. Once Again I believe it was the Holy Ghost that caused this soldier to come to Christ.

It does not make no difference what your station is in life. You may be like Pilate’s wife, who was someone of importance. You could be like the thief on the cross, who stole, or else you might be a person of authority as the roman soldier. It makes no difference. Jesus went to that cross for us all, no matter what our station in life is. It is the Holy Ghost Conviction that causes us all to come to Christ same as it was with these three in Bible times. We serve the same Jesus, as we did yesterday, we serve the same Jesus today, and forever we will serve the same Jesus! We must remember that “He is not there {in that tomb}, He has risen. We as followers of Christ have something to look forward to, that is this, we are going to live forever with our Lord, to sit at His feet, and to serve Him for ever and ever. We will be in a place where there will be no more sickness, death, no sadness, no pain, no sorrow, just peace and joy in The Holy Ghost. We will be in a place where a day will be as a thousand years and a thousand years will be as a day. Oh what a day that will be!

As with almost all Christian Holidays Easter has been secularized and commercialized. Each spring the excitement of Easter fills the air. Many churches prepare special Easter programs  and their egg hunts. Little is said about our Savior. At home mothers color Easter eggs, and parents hide the brightly colored holiday symbols around the house and lawn so that, come Easter morning, their children can excitedly hunt for them. What do colored eggs and the Easter rabbit have to do with Jesus Christ's resurrection? How did these seemingly irreligious symbols come to be associated with that event? As this Easter approaches there will be people in their Easter bonnets, new clothes and shoes going to church for the very first time this year. There will be Easter egg candy, colored eggs, and Easter egg hunts in every town and city. This is okay with me as long as the children are taught the true meaning of Easter.  There comes a time that we must separate the real from the unreal. It is okay with me as long as the parents tell their kids who and what to search for first and that is Jesus, not the Easter eggs. It is not for them to look for the bunny rabbit hippy hopping down the bunny trail, but to look for the return of the one who died for them. Kids will be kids and it is the parents place and responsibility to teach their kids the truth. If you claim to be a Christian it is your duty to do this. You can eat your Easter eggs with your kids {but save the jelly beans for me} as you tell kids and grand kids the true Easter story about a Savior who died for them.

We live in a time and age that the world grows spiritually darker every day. There are people losing their jobs, people going hungry, people losing their homes, bank accounts, and all their worldly processions. People are alarmingly turning their back on God and things does not lot good. Our nation’s leaders for the most part have turned their back on God. I believe with all my heart that Our Savior’s return is emanate. All the signs are there. We must put our faith in Jesus, The Cross, The Resurrection, and The promise that He will come again. The fact that He has gone to prepare a place for us and where He is we will be also. This is our hope and our faith. All other hope is sinking sand. As I close this commentary of mine for this Easter I want to leave you with a few lines of a old hymn of the church;

 My Hope is built on nothing less,

than Jesus’ Blood and righteousness,

I dare not trust the sweetest frame,

But wholly lean on Jesus Name

On Christ, The Solid Rock, I stand,

All other ground is sinking sand,

All other ground is sinking sand.


 


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