Easter Sunday. It is the day that friends and family members, who have been absent from church, return for a visit. A joyful event, Easter Sunday has the power to move the heart, rekindle forgotten commitments and refresh a soul that has become calloused. How will you respond?
A Psalm Introduces Easter
Whether you are a first-time guest, a returning friend or a longtime member, Easter Sunday holds a special meaning for each and everyone. Interestingly, it finds its origin in Psalm 22. Although its authorship is attributed to King David, you will be hard-pressed to find a parallel event in his life that could account for the collection of prophetic verses. Clearly foretelling the crucifixion, the psalm beckons for a response. Is it possible to acknowledge Jesus as the Messiah and concurrently choose to remain unaffected by His message?
A Model Response
How should you respond to the meaning of Easter? If you are in church today, you most likely acknowledge that there is something to the idea of a Messiah having walked the earth. While churched Americans have been conditioned to submit to the image of the cross with downcast eyes, Christ did not ask for obeisance to an image.
In fact, He may be a bit put off by it. Instead, you can find His wish for you in John 17. Praying before heading out to the garden where Judas would lead a band of soldiers to arrest Jesus, He asked God that you, I and everyone else, who will have placed faith in the persona of the Messiah because of the disciples’ testimony, would experience unity.
- Unity among believers is characterized by the absence of petty arguments that sound like theological discussions but do not fall under the mantle of doctrinal teaching.
- Unity expresses itself in the individual’s decision to love the other person – in spite of their political leanings, obvious (and imagined) shortcomings as well as unlovable qualities.
- Unity has you coming back to the foot of the cross. Not to curtsy to the image, but to practice a unified faith response to a God who chose to suffer and die. And this response does not come naturally; it must be learned.
See you next Sunday!