It was a pivotal point in human history. The Prince of Peace culminated a three-year ministry that transformed the way God dealt with His people. No longer would people search for peace with God through compliance with the law. That weekend on Friday, He died on a cross and was buried. On Sunday, He was raised from the dead. He knocked the end out of a “dead-end street” and turned death itself into a passageway to life. He demonstrated that death is not the end of life, but a transition into our ultimate destiny, life with Him. For me, a whole new quality of life emerged. On a day-to-day basis I began to know Jesus personally and to grow in my relationship with him.
That weekend changed the way I think about events in time. I used to wonder how a historical event 2,000 years ago could have any significant impact on me today. In Greek grammar, there is a verb tense that carries the meaning of a past event that continues to bring results in the present. It’s called the “perfect tense.” That busy weekend provided the perfect basis for my faith in which I now stand and a quality of life which I now enjoy.
The Bible says it clearly:
3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, …” (1 Corinthians 15:3-4)
That weekend changed my quality of life. My life had been good, but it was two-dimensional. I surrendered the control of my life to Christ late in 1968 and experienced a spiritual “rebirth.” The third dimension added to my new life was spiritual. Instead of striving to achieve goals, I found myself surrendering to God’s lead, being used by him to accomplish his will. Instead of getting exhausted and tired chasing my own goals, I found myself getting energized and excited. Instead of wondering if my contributions would soon become obsolete, I found a peace of mind and confidence that I could contribute to timeless issues of people’s lives. People and the Word of God, these became secure investments for the rest of my life! Even when I left my profession of electrical engineering and didn’t know exactly what lay ahead of me, I knew the WHO that would take me there. Jesus is the “who” that takes care of all the “what” in my life. Security became based on the experiential reality of knowing Jesus who can never falter or fail.
That event transformed the way I now see circumstances in my life. Events are not determinative, but evidence of God’s intervention in my life for my good. So-called “bad” things (like cancer) simply bring curiosity at how God is pruning me and bringing me closer to Him. So-called “good” things, like health and comfort and success, need not bring pride because I can’t take credit for so much anymore. God is at work in my life! I no longer see God through the lens of my circumstances, but I can assess my circumstances through God’s eyes.
That event 2000 years ago continues to remind me that, though I am a small part of this world, I am not without value. I am significant and I matter. If worth is measured by the price paid for something, then I am humbled by the price God paid for my salvation on that busy weekend.
This Easter, I reflect on the impact of that busy weekend on me: Jesus came so that his followers “may have life and have it abundantly” (John 10:10). Okay, I must say it: “Hallelujah!”