Focal passage: John 20:3-9,19-23, 27-29
The Easter story may be a familiar one to some, but the resurrection of Jesus is a truth that we should often rehearse. An innocent Jesus had been led to the cross of Calvary to die a sinner’s death. He suffered and died there, taking on the death that we deserved for our sin. When He died, hope seemed to be lost. But Jesus came through on His promise to rise again.
On Sunday morning, the tomb that held Jesus’ crucified body was empty! God the Father was pleased to raise Jesus from the dead, and by doing so, He demonstrated that He was pleased with His perfect sacrifice (Romans 8:11). Because Jesus is risen, we can be justified – made righteous before a holy God. Because Jesus is alive, we can have the hope of eternal life (1 Corinthians 15:20-23). This is good news!
Jesus is alive! And He did not just leave the tomb empty, He appeared in flesh to His disciples and many others. Jesus proved that He had risen from the dead by appearing to and speaking with those who had seen Him die. He did this so that they would believe in the power of God and so they could bear witness to the world. One of the reasons we can trust in Jesus today is because He appeared alive to people back then.
Jesus lives today! His life, death and resurrection are still sufficient to save. When we believe that Jesus is alive, we are blessed. In fact, faith in the living Christ grants us forgiveness of our sins and ensures the gift of eternal life. If you’ve never asked for Christ’s forgiveness and placed your faith in Him, you can do so now! If you have trusted in Jesus, who can you encourage to do the same? Jesus’ resurrection is still our greatest hope!