God walked amongst His creation. Jesus was born of a virgin, God incarnate, God amongst mortals. Nothing more amazing ever came into this world, so why did Jesus – the Promise, the Son of God – have to die?
The simple answer is sin! Sin came into this world as a result of both Adam and Eve’s disobedience towards God. You see, God created Adam and left him in charge, yet Adam and Eve ignored God’s warning.
The Lord God placed the man in the Garden of Eden to tend and watch over it. But the Lord God warned him, “You may freely eat the fruit of every tree in the garden— except the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. If you eat its fruit, you are sure to die.” (Genesis 2:15-17, NLT)
The serpent (or the devil) in the garden tricked Eve into eating the fruit. Adam was stood right there next to her and he didn’t stop her. In fact, he took some for himself!
The serpent was the shrewdest of all the wild animals the Lord God had made. One day he asked the woman, “Did God really say you must not eat the fruit from any of the trees in the garden?” “Of course we may eat fruit from the trees in the garden,” the woman replied. “It’s only the fruit from the tree in the middle of the garden that we are not allowed to eat. God said, ‘You must not eat it or even touch it; if you do, you will die.’” “You won’t die!” the serpent replied to the woman. “God knows that your eyes will be opened as soon as you eat it, and you will be like God, knowing both good and evil.” The woman was convinced. She saw that the tree was beautiful and its fruit looked delicious, and she wanted the wisdom it would give her. So she took some of the fruit and ate it. Then she gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it, too. (Genesis 3:1-6, NLT)
That’s the moment sin entered into the perfect world God had created and messed it up. The only way sin could be removed was to give a sacrifice to pay the price. The problem was the only things mankind had to offer were animals, and their sacrifice didn’t have the power to take away sin, only to ‘atone’ or cover it.
God’s plan was to send His perfect sinless Son as a sacrifice for all mankind to take away our sin. God sent his only Son – Jesus – into this world to pay the price once and for all.
No one likes thinking about death! Yet because of what was unleashed into this once perfect world, someone had to die. In many ways it was a beautiful death, a life given to save billions. It took God becoming fully man (yet remaining fully God at the same time) to pay the price for our sins.
But our High Priest offered himself to God as a single sacrifice for sins, good for all time. Then he sat down in the place of honor at God’s right hand. There he waits until his enemies are humbled and made a footstool under his feet. For by that one offering he forever made perfect those who are being made holy. (Hebrews 10:12-14, NLT)
This became the ultimate act of love.
There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. (John 15:13, NLT).
Jesus gave Himself for you and I so we are no longer bound by the penalty of sin.
For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23, NLT)
When Jesus died He did so freely because of love. Love made Him do it. He wasn’t tricked into dying. He didn’t have a stunt double or a lookalike who took His place. Jesus actually died! Not only did He die, but on the third day He rose again, just like He said He would! No one believed Him when He told them it would happen. Even His own disciples doubted Him.
Then Jesus began to tell them that the Son of Man must suffer many terrible things and be rejected by the elders, the leading priests, and the teachers of religious law. He would be killed, but three days later he would rise from the dead. (Mark 8:31, NLT)
The gospels tell us that the Romans placed two guards outside Jesus’ tomb. When the earth began to shake they were frightened and the seal that the Roman officials had placed on the tomb was broken and the stone was rolled away!
Early on Sunday morning, as the new day was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went out to visit the tomb. Suddenly there was a great earthquake! For an angel of the Lord came down from heaven, rolled aside the stone, and sat on it. His face shone like lightning, and his clothing was as white as snow. The guards shook with fear when they saw him, and they fell into a dead faint. Then the angel spoke to the women. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I know you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead, just as he said would happen. Come, see where his body was lying. And now, go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and he is going ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there. Remember what I have told you.” The women ran quickly from the tomb. They were very frightened but also filled with great joy, and they rushed to give the disciples the angel’s message. (Matthew 28:1-8, NLT)
Even the two Marys were astonished with what they saw. They asked the man sitting there, ‘Where is Jesus?’ Little did they know they were speaking to the angel of the Lord. He said, ‘Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but is risen!’ (Luke 24:5-7, NKJV)
The two women ran and told the disciples. The disciples didn’t believe their story until they saw Jesus for themselves, all except for Peter, who jumped up and ran to the tomb to look.
Jesus appeared to His disciples on the road to Emmaus, as well as to over 500 of His followers. He ate bread and fish with His friends. He wasn’t a ghost. He is a risen saviour.
Today, Jesus is alive in Heaven. His presence is here with us and the Bible tells us that one day He will return for His bride, the church. We need to be ready and waiting for Him, not consumed by the desires of this world. We have to keep our hearts and ears tuned for when He comes again. What a glorious day that will be!
There will never be another King like Him. He is King of kings and Lord of lords! Amen.