by Kevin Burton
Profound as the Easter message is, it’s also very simple.
Did you catch it Sunday?
Dane Massey is a guest blogger on Page 7 from time to time. He is formerly the pastor of Mulvane Christian Church and is now in ministry in Houston. His Easter message Sunday contains a great reminder.
There are entire libraries of material about Jesus, the cross, the resurrection and all that it means to us today. Not speaking against that, but let’s never get away from that easy-to-understand Easter morning message.
Here is Massey’s Easter greeting.
“Good morning! It’s Resurrection Day! It’s Easter! I’m sitting in a dark living room, four of my grandchildren asleep on couches and floors, thinking about writing about something complicated, and I’m reminded: It’s really quite simple,” Massey wrote.
“Over 2,000 years ago God made a statement across the pages of history; it starts at a cross and it ends at an empty tomb! It reads: I love you!”
“It means my sin is not the final statement about my life no matter how ugly, how dark, or how large it is. I can be forgiven! Sin doesn’t win,” Massey wrote.
For believers, the resurrection turns death from a period to a comma, allowing for and pointing toward what comes next. Death is an ending in the physical realm, but it marks a glorious beginning for followers of Christ.
“It means that all those graves that we visit, all those pictures we look at, all those memories that bring pain and tears are not the end. There will be another chapter written,” Massey wrote.
“There is a Creator! He loves us! He sent His Son! Jesus died that our sins might be forgiven!”
“The testimony that the payment of His death for our sin was legal, acceptable, complete and perfect is the empty tomb! The grave is not victorious!”
Next Massey quote the Apostle Paul’s exultant assessment from 1 Cor. 15, 55-57, which in the KJV reads:
“O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
You may be saying ‘Easter is over, move on to something else.’
I say, the Super Bowl is one day a year. But Easter and its message of forgiveness through Jesus, though formally celebrated once a year, is for every day, every moment even.
Paul believed that. That’s why verse 58 reads, “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.”
“This statement: ‘The cross and an empty tomb,’ is the plumb line of history. By it all things are interpreted, all things are measured, and all things are weighed,” Massey wrote.
The evidence for the resurrection is there for any who are willing to view them objectively.
“There is more evidence that Jesus rose from the dead than there is that Julius Caesar ever lived, or that Alexander the Great died at the age of 33,” reads a daily devotional on the website www.billygraham.org.
“It is strange that historians will accept thousands of facts for which they can produce only shreds of evidence. But in the face of the overwhelming evidence of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, they cast a skeptical eye and hold intellectual doubts,” reads the website.
“The same men and women who give testimony of His birth and His life give testimony of His resurrection,” Massey wrote.
“They couldn’t believe it! It wasn’t possible! Yet they saw an empty tomb, guarded by Roman soldiers! They saw Him! They touched Him! They ate with Him! They walked and talked with Him, not in a dream but for more than 30 days! It was unbelievable yet the facts said it was and is true!”
“These men and women are never questioned concerning the fact that Jesus was born, that He lived, that He died, yet they, along with over 500 other witnesses are all of the sudden questionable when it comes to the resurrection?”
More than mere memories from a happy day, their testimony is evidence pointing toward a new and glorious reality for believers.