Sunday, April 27, 2014

Post Easter

“Remember Jesus Christ, risen from the dead, descendant of David, according to my gospel…” -2Tim. 2:8 By now, the Easter decorations are put away and the candy is long gone. You might still find a few Easter egg remnants around the house but, for most, Easter is a faint memory. But a week ago, Sunday, we were dressing in our best to head out the door to a beautiful Easter service. The day to celebrate Christ’s rising from the dead had arrived. But have we have already forgotten? It is absolutely crucial that we never forget. We have a tendency to forget. In the spiritual realm, a place where we seldom camp, the evil one is fast at work in the cessation of a positive thought life. We remember the bad and forget the good. We will overly dwell on a past mistake but quickly forget a past success. In the Old Testament, that’s why God instituted so many feasts and celebrations: so the nation of Israel wouldn’t forget His blessings. That’s why we need celebrations like Easter: so we will remember that Jesus is alive. And that’s why we have church- whether Sunday, Saturday or whenever- so we will remember Jesus’ resurrection every week. And it’s not just individuals who forget, it’s churches as well. We have to be careful, as a body of believers, to remember the origin of worship. We meet as a church every week specifically so we will remember Easter. Most denominations do not worship on the Sabbath, which according to Jewish law is the last day of the week (Saturday), when God rested from all the work he had done in creation (Gen. 2:2-3). Most churches worship on the Lord’s Day, the first day of the week (Sunday); the day when God said "Let there be light" (Gen. 1:3); the day when Christ rose from the dead; the day when the Holy Spirit came upon the Apostles (Day of Pentecost). The actual day of worship is not important. Paul said, ““Let no one, then, pass judgment on you in matters of food and drink or with regard to a festival or new moon or Sabbath” (Col. 2:16). The point is that when we gather as believers in Christ, whatever the day, we celebrate Easter all over again. We’re to celebrate Easter every week. Wouldn’t that be amazing? Every week? Most churches focus more energy on Easter. Special music, videos and a take-home souvenir highlight most church services on Easter. The budget for most Easter services is twice that for the “regular” service. It is the highest day of attendance for churches across the land. Why? Because the spectacle of Easter attracts the masses. Oh, that the “spectacle” would continue the other 364 days of the year, not just in churches, but in the hearts of us all. Jesus’ death and resurrection were not just a historical event, but an every day privilege to enjoy. We wake every day to the reality that our redeemer lives, not on a distant planet somewhere, but in the hearts of those who, by faith, have confessed their belief in Jesus Christ. Remember Easter every day. Remind your kids of Easter every day. Reach out to Jesus as your risen Lord every day. Reflect on His tremendous love for you every day. Relax in His awesome peace and love others with His strength. Enjoy Easter every day of the year… …and the chocolate Easter eggs as well. By Eric Joseph Staples ©

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