Summary: Easter means the Christian can have peace with the past, joy in the present, and hope for the future.
Easter Sunrise Devotional: 2001
From the pulpit of Bayview Baptist Church, Columbia, SC
"What Does Easter Mean To You?"
What does Easter mean to you?
Amanda Ward, age 7, of Nashville, Tennessee said, “Easter is when Jesus got alive!”
The resurrection of Jesus is the most totally awesome event of our Christian faith.
For believers, Easter means not only that Jesus is alive, but also Easter gives us the promise of our own life after death, because Jesus conquered death.
Matthew, the tax collector gives us our early morning account of the resurrection.
Read Matthew 28:1-10
Because of the resurrection, you and I can have peace with our past!
I’ve seen so many people who cannot get over the mistakes they have made in the past.
Life to them has become hollow, and has lost its purpose and meaning, because they have allowed themselves to be defeated by their past.
The heavy burden of their past sins is more than they can handle.
When a person places his or her trust and faith in our living Lord Jesus Christ, Jesus, if you’re willing to allow Him, He will help you make peace with your past.
Do you remember the A,B,C’s of our faith?
A. = By myself, I cannot! (Admit your sin).
B. = God can! (Believe in God).
C. = With your help, God, I can! (Commit to God).
The resurrection of Jesus Christ is essential for the forgiveness of our sins.
For if Jesus had not been raised from the dead, He would have been powerless over death and the forgiveness of our sins.
Because of the resurrection, you and I can have peace with our present!
John’s Gospel says, “I have come that they might have life, and have it to the full.”
You and I can enjoy the blessings of the present, and we can have peace and joy in the present, because we know Christ in our lives and hearts.
To be blessed with the present means that you and I are not sitting passively, but instead we are actively looking for the blessings.
Where can the blessings be found?
They can be found in the home, in the church, in daily Bible study, through prayer, and certainly they can be found through the joys of daily living.
Many people today take their daily lives for granted.
I hope and pray that we remember our blessings of the present and are thankful for them day-by-day.
As you go through life day-by-day, remember that Jesus understands.
He knows exactly what you are experiencing, for He knows the pressures and emotions that go through your heart, because He experienced those same things too, and He can give you peace with your present.
Because of the resurrection, you and I can have peace with our future!
This is where our Christian faith gets real good!
The future is of great concern to most of us.
Jesus is alive and through His help we can have joy and peace about our past.
Jesus is alive and through His help we can enjoy life today in the full.
Jesus is alive and through His help we are promised to live eternally with God.
If you believe that Jesus died on the cross, was buried, and was resurrected from the grave, then the Bible promises you eternal life.
When we consider the fact that the tomb was empty, we can come to no other conclusion than the fact that Jesus is alive!
If you’re here this morning, and you need a good dose of hope injected in your life, then imagine for a moment that you were the first person to look into the tomb that first Easter morning.
When you look inside, all that you see are strips of linen lying on the slab of stone.
“He was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5).
What then are we healed from?
We are healed from the sins of our past.
We are healed from the dangers and mistakes of our present.
And we are healed from the fear of our future and the eternal punishment of our sins.
Romans 6:8-10 “Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with Him. For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, He cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over Him. The death He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life He lives, He lives to God.”
We don’t have to live in fear this morning because all power is in the hands of our gentle Savior, and from the results of His death, comes life.
What does the resurrection mean to you?