OUT OF THE PASTOR’S PEN

BECAUSE HE LOVES YOU SO MUCH

In his book “Evidence that demands a Verdict,” Josh McDowell describes what Jesus went through on our behalf. It started with “a sleepless night with no food. Then Jesus endured the mockery of two trials; He was slapped, mocked, spat upon, and ridiculed with a robe, a scepter, and a crown of thorns. He had his back lacerated with the cruel Roman “cat-o-nine tails” whip which caused excessive tearing of the flesh, bleeding, cramps and dizziness; followed by tetanus (many prisoners did not even live through this lashing!) When He arrived at Golgotha’s Hill, Jesus suffered the shame of the cross (a weapon of punishment reserved only for the cruelest of criminals). Messiah Jesus was publicly humiliated and shamed. He was stripped naked; He suffered the long horror of anticipated death; the mortification of untended wounds; the unnatural position of His body on the cross; lacerated veins and arteries; crushed tendons throbbing with incessant anguish and torment; gradual gangrene; arteries around the head and stomach becoming swollen and oppressed with surcharge blood; and with all that – add a burning and raging thirst!”
My Soul! WHY did Jesus DO that? Why did He allow Himself to SUFFER so? WHY DID HE DIE? Because He loves you so much, that’s why? Because He loves me so much, that’s why! Every time I think of His sacrifice on my behalf, I’m AMAZED! I stand in AWE of His GREAT REDEEMING LOVE! I’m reminded of a poster that reads “I asked Jesus – How much do You love me? And He stretched out His arms – and died!” WOW! Isn’t that POWERFUL, isn’t that AWESOME?!
 

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He is Risen, He is Risen in Deed

Some Thoughts About The First Easter
Before the first Easter, the world was under a number of separations:
–Political distinctions: various nations, but in that time, Roman Empire. Provinces, leaders
–Geographical: some traveled far, others stayed near their home territory; Jewish males had to make three trips to Jerusalem (Passover, Pentecost or Weeks, and Tabernacles). They had to overcome mountains, rivers, deserts, walled cities, and any other obstacles as they journeyed.
–National: Jews were different than all other peoples, and their culture was different than that of most places where they lived.
–Religious: They worshiped an “invisible” God, compared to the images and idols of every other religion. The idea of an invisible God being involved in the physical universe might have been more than most non-Jewish people could understand.
–Gender: Men were looked on as superior to women, Gentiles, and slaves.
–Spiritual: All people were spiritually separated from God and there was no way to become personally acquainted with God except by coming in contact with the Jews. Some Gentiles had become believers in the God of Israel during Old Testament days (Rahab, Ruth, and more); sadly, most did not. The Israelites had a limited knowledge of the afterlife; only a few comments are recorded such as David’s realization he would meet his infant son (2 Samuel 12:23) and the writer of Psalm 71 knew of a resurrection (Psalm 71:20). Several have observed that the clearest declaration of two resurrections in the Old Testament is found in Daniel 12:1-3.
But at and after the first Easter:
Jesus Christ took on Himself every sin that has ever been committed and all those in the future! He paid the sin-debt in full
By His death we have forgiveness; by His resurrection we may have everlasting life!
Because He came to earth, we can go to Heaven!
Scriptures: 2 Samuel, Daniel 12:1-3, Psalm 71, Psalm 71:20, Psalms 71:20

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