Honoring Christ's sacrifice: These three words will change your life forever
John 19:30 (KJV) "It is finished."
Matthew 28:6 (KJV) "He has risen."
I want to take a moment and use this Christ's Corner to truly honor the sacrifice Jesus Christ did for us. This time of season is when believers celebrate the death, burial, and resurrection of our Saviour. I chose these two verses because to me, these three little words speak volumes.
Have you ever stopped to think about what all Jesus went through? I know that growing up we are taught that Jesus died, was buried, and arose again on the third day but then that is simply followed with a dismissal prayer and off families go to rush home and have their dinners, egg hunts, and other various traditions that were brought in over time. For some, its hugging after the dismissal prayer and going into the fellowship hall to have breakfast after Sunrise Service. Now, don't get me wrong, I enjoy those things like everyone else, but my point here is to shed light on this essential event that happened thousands of years ago.
Most of us have read the four gospels where it tells of Jesus's life. There have also been many movies to come out depicting what it might have looked like throughout the crucifixion process. Through that, we have a better understanding as to the sorrow Jesus felt as He prayed there in the garden of Gethsemane about what He was going to endure for the salvation of the world. Those visionary examples show the suffering from the beatings and degradation our Lord went through just before He was nailed to the cross, and as He hung there.
Our Saviour was betrayed, mocked, degraded, and beaten. Think of your own life as I give a brief run down on some of the events leading up to Christ's death. Jesus was obeying God, doing all the things our Father would have Him do. Christ worked miracles and changed lives all the while teaching and building up people to continue His ministry for after His sacrifice. Judas Iscariot was the one who betrayed our Lord (Matthew 26:47-50, Mark 14:43-46, Luke 22:47-53, John 18:1-11) that night. Many say he was driven by greed stating that in John 12:6 it showed Judas as a thief. They have also said that he could have been motivated by a hunger for power, thinking Jesus would take a political stand and bring Judas up with Him. After He was arrested, the others fled to keep out of trouble but Peter came close enough to hear, only to deny his Messiah (Matthew 26:69-75, Mark 14:66-72, Luke 22:55-62, John 18:16-17; 18:25-27). And that was just the beginning of what Jesus did to solidify our grafting in.
With our God being a methodical God, He always has a plan. He has a strategic outline so that things will work out for the good. As we read in the scriptures, God wanted to start a new covenant in the world so He sent His son to be the ultimate sacrifice to break the barrier between Heaven and Earth that there would be no separation (Matthew 27:51 '..the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom') and praise God, He arose on the third day (Matthew 28:6). We serve a living God that cares for us. The Bible says He knows the number of hairs on our heads (Matthew 10:30, Luke 12:7).
In a world, as today, it's hard to trust that even your family truly cares for you, much less friends or people in your inner circle. But there is always a love that is unwavering. A love that is unconditional. An agape love that transcends anything our earthly mind could ever try to comprehend. He did it for me. He did it for you. He did it for all. The verse most of us were taught as children says, 'For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.' John 3:16.
It's amazing how three simple words can change the course of history. 'It is finished.' 'He has risen.' 'I love you.' Remember, He thought you, me, all of us - were worth all that He went though.
Anna Green is a member of a non-denominational church in the United States and is also the writer and editor of Christ's Corner Ministries founded by her father, the late Dr Walter D. Hill. Christ's Corner is a weekly devotional sent out to uplift, inspire, and share the word of the Lord. She is on Twitter @AnnaGreen2017