Today we celebrate Easter. It’s my favorite holiday of the year because of its significance.
It is the most attended church service of the year, which means that many people who do not usually attend church do so on Easter, which means that there are more people who don’t know Jesus at church on Easter than any other day of the year.
Christians, of course, celebrate Easter because the resurrection is the lynchpin of Christianity. As the Apostle Paul said, if Jesus is not resurrected from the dead, our faith is in vain, we are still in our sins, and we should be pitied not followed. I Corinthians 15:14-19. The resurrection proves Jesus was who he said he was and that we can trust Him to grant us eternal life.
But so often overlooked at Easter is what the resurrection means for Christians before they die. The Apostle Paul told the Roman Christians:
But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.Romans 8:11
We can be assured we will be raised from the dead because the same Holy Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead dwells in our mortal bodies. But if we believe the Holy Spirit can raise us from the dead, we must also believe that the same Holy Spirit can give us victory over sin in our mortal bodies. If we believe the Holy Spirit is powerful enough to overcome the result of sin, we must also believe He is powerful enough to overcome the reality of sin.
Easter, then, is not just about the sweet by-and-by but the nasty now and now. And although pain and suffering will always be part of living in a fallen world, for the Spirit-filled Christian, continuing to live enslaved to sin need not be.
Of course, what you believe will determine how you act. If you believe you cannot resist temptation you will surely give into it. So, maybe this Easter instead of just thanking Jesus for eternal life, thank Him for one in which you no longer need be enslaved to sin, and then start living like you believe it.
Happy Easter. GS