One surprising thing I realised when I read the Easter story again

5:30 am Wendy van Eyck 0 Comments


I love that the story of Jesus being led to the cross and being raised from death is full of humanity.

It’s full of people who one moment were saying “You are Lord” and the next denying they ever even knew the one who was about to be crucified.

There’s the hothead, Peter, so angry at God for allowing this to happen that he slices someone’s ear off. And then later Peter denies he even knew the one he was willing just hours earlier to fight for.

There’s the coward who is so afraid of being caught with Jesus that he runs away naked leaving his cloak in some surprised soldiers hands.

And there are the women who find Jesus in the garden. The thing I always forget about them is that they weren’t going to his tomb to see if he had risen they were going with salts and herbs to prepare his body. They weren’t women of great faith when they walked to the tomb they were women with broken hearts.

I love that it’s full of people like Thomas who deny that Jesus is alive until they see him for themselves.

What I love most of all is that Jesus loves all these frail, doubting people, loves all these people just like me, and you.

I'd forgotten this. The Easter story felt so familiar to me that I forgot that the people surrounding it weren't saints, I forgot that Jesus died for normal people like me. 

If you have ever bought into the lie that you have to be perfect for Jesus to love you, or that you cant have questions or doubts, or even be afraid for people to know that you’re a Christian than this story of a man who shoulders the wood that will kill him should end those.
Easter is about grace.
It’s about the fact that Jesus willing to die for us.
To die for people that would deny him, question him, doubt him, be angry at him, try to bury him, run from him.
That’s some crazy kind of love.

There will be those who don’t like this message, those who say, “But you have to do something to be saved, you have to live right.”
I don’t believe that is the message of the cross. I believe the message of the cross is all are welcome and Jesus has done it all.
His sacrifice, his act, his grace. 
His bigness wrapped around our smallness.
His goodness overcoming all our darkness.
His arms carrying the weight of our mistakes so that we could unwrap the life he has for us.
His love touching all the places we thought were unlovable.

That is what love does. 
Love offers itself in place of the one it loves.

When Jesus hung on a cross to give us life, life and more life he knew exactly the type of people who is laying it all on the line for.
He knew because they were his friends, his companions, the ones with whom he chose to spend his last hours before his capture and the first after rising from the dead.

Jesus chose to give us life. All of us.
Doubters?
Questioners?
Liars?
Those who give up?
Thieves?
Mourners?
People who no one notices?
Those with small faith? 
Those who deny Jesus?
All welcome. All welcomed by the man who died on the cross and rose three days later so we could live with him forever.

This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. John 3:16 (MSG)



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