April 8 2014 by
Bartley Wooten, pastor, Beulaville Baptist Church, Beulaville
Focal Passage: 1 Corinthians 15:20-28
In 1990, I was in the infield at Bristol Motor Speedway getting ready to watch a NASCAR race.
Back then, I was a mechanic at a local dealership and spent a significant amount of time following NASCAR. When we arrived at the race, the men I was with wanted everyone to put in $5 and draw names of the drivers.
Whoever drew the winner’s name would get all the money. When they asked me to put in $5 I politely declined and told them I didn’t feel comfortable doing that.
One of the older men told me not to worry that he would cover my money.
They begin to pull out the names and they gave me mine. Although, I never felt comfortable taking the name, God had special mercy on me. The name of the driver they gave me won the race and they gave me all the money.
I probably should not have taken the money, but I was excited and figured God was just teaching them a lesson. However, the reason I tell you this story is not because of the money but because it provides an illustration for our lesson this week.
Let me explain: the winner, if I remember correctly, was Ernie Irvan. His team had worked extremely hard to get ready for the race. He drove hard for his team and, after much fender-to-fender racing, he won. The moment he crossed the finish line I became a beneficiary of his victory. In other words, because He won I won.
Now, as I young man that was exciting, but the truth is nothing can compare to how excited I am about Easter Sunday.
As our text teaches us this week, because Jesus was victorious over sin and death we too can be victorious over the grave.
Indeed, because of Christ’s resurrection, we are no longer slaves to sin but we can daily and eternally enjoy the fruit of His victory. Jesus has done all the work. He won the “race.” We just need to repent and receive His free gift and experience His blessings.