Sept. 29 - The Good News - Personal
As kids, we grow up hearing about the crucifixion of Christ and we may tend to imagine it’s a method of death only reserved for the son of God, but in reality crucifixion was very common in those times. Between 100 BC and 400 AD, around 30,000 - 50,000 people died on a cross.
Jesus’ followers at the time were shocked this is how the story would end for their Messiah, a man they believed had come to lead the fight against the occupying pagan forces and bring freedom to them all. Although they had listened to his teachings for years, they had no idea Jesus was dying for their sins. On the evening of His crucifixion, they were clueless of the change in the world that had just taken place. They thought all their hopes had just died along with their leader.
Until three days later.
1 Corinthians 15:3-6 For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, and then to the Twelve. After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers and sisters at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep.
Everybody in the time of Jesus, just like everybody in our time, knew that dead people don’t just come back to life, let alone reappear in a new, transformed body. Something must have happened to make that possible. The crucifixion, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ changed everything. Through the resurrection of Jesus, God’s new creation had started and now everything was being made new.
Believing in Jesus’s resurrection isn’t simply a matter of giving acknowledgment to the fact that on the third day he rose again from the dead. It goes far beyond that. We need to understand a new way of being human has launched, a way that starts with forgiveness. It starts with God’s forgiveness of those who turn from their now-defeated idols and it continues with forgiveness offered by Jesus’s followers to all who have wronged us.
Forgiveness is the new reality. Every day we are surrounded by so many people who don’t know Christ and have no idea what the Good News is. It’s up to us to live out the Gospel in our lives and show them what it means to accept what Christ has done for us. Our primary role of the resurrection is to be a reflection of God in this world, forgiving others. Through this His holiness is satisfied and the love of God is magnified.
There are so many aspects of this message that can be difficult to grasp but are important to understand. We encourage you to listen to the whole sermon here if you missed it.