Defeated but not really.
Prince of Peace Enters.
Defeated but not really.
Prince of Peace Enters.
Below is an article I saved many years ago. I thought I’d share it with you as we approach Resurrection Day!
Sunset to Sunrise by W. T. Allison
It could well be said of the early followers of Christ, “They came to the sepulcher at the rising of the sun and found it empty,” and life was never the same again. Christ had turned their sunsets into sunrise.
At SUNSET, it seemed that the universe did not care what happened to the Righteous One; at SUNRISE, the disciples knew that the tomb could not contain the Lord Jesus.
At SUNSET, the cross seemed a horrible implement of execution; at SUNRISE, it became a reverent and holy symbol, before which the world kneels in adoration and rises with inspiration.
At SUNSET, the grave, sealed with an immovable rock seemed to be conclusive evidence that death was at the end; at SUNRISE, man was given hope that he can outlive death. The empty tomb represents victory for every child of God.
At SUNSET, hopelessness abounded; at SUNRISE, hope did much more abound.
At SUNSET, a Galilean rabbi was dead, Jesus of Nazareth; at SUNRISE He was truly the Christ of God, the risen Lord of Glory.
At SUNSET, the obscure disciples were a timid, discouraged, disillusioned, weary lot; at SUNRISE, they were transformed, confident, courageous crusaders who went forth to defy kings, to proclaim Christ, and to change the world.
Resurrection Sunday was a day that changed the world. If you can catch the spirit, power and significance of this day, it can change your life and can turn your sunsets into sunrise.
Thomas was not going to believe that Jesus shad been raised form the dead. He replied, “Except I see, I will not believe.” Then the risen Lord appeared, and Thomas, falling down, cried, “My Lord, My God.” Jesus said, “Because you have seen me, you believe; blessed are they who have not seen me but who believe.”
If you will only believe the resurrection of Christ, it will turn all your sunsets to sunrise. He arose!!!
From the church bulletin of the Creekwood Church of Christ, Mobile, AL, date unknown.
By the time the darkness had descended upon the land Jesus had been hanging on the cross for three hours.
Suffering intense agony.
Speaking words of forgiveness.
Listening to the cry of the thief on the cross.
Recognizing his mother.
Entrusting Mary to John.
Roman soldiers were watching him suffer, mocking him, dividing his clothes, gambling for his outer garment.
The chief priests were angrily criticizing Pontius Pilate’s inscription on the Cross “THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS.”
Humanity passing by, a wicked parade of sarcasm, ridicule, challenge, and curse.
Then suddenly at noontime a somber silence descends as darkness instantly falls upon the land – leaving the hours between noontime and three o’clock in the afternoon a blank page in the story. (Luke 23:44-49)
The darkness at the cross speaks to …
The Darkness in Our Hearts. Where have you encountered the darkest places in life? What are the dark places….In your home, In your habits, In your thoughts…
This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. ~John 3:19-20
Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. For it is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret. But everything exposed by the light becomes visible, for it is light that makes everything visible. ~Ephesians 5:11-14
The Battle Against Darkness. We are incapable of winning the battle against darkness on our own. We have an enemy we are unable to defeat on our own. We have a hope in heaven we are unable to attain on our own.
The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work. ~1 John 3:8
And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross. ~Colossians 2:15
The Price Paid to Dispel Darkness.
God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. ~2 Corinthians 5:21
But 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
The glory of the resurrection story must be understood in the pain and darkness of the cross. Only in the Cross do we find our identification … the acceptance of the loss of answers … to be abandoned in the mystery of the cross. If we ever wonder why or why not, we look to the cross to know that even God’s son – innocent for the guilty – cannot be fully explained.
“God must pity any man who thinks he understands this cross completely. God have mercy on any child of God if the day comes in which he has not to sing, “Love so amazing, so divine. … in those three hours He could not save Himself. That was because His heart was set upon saving others.” ~G. Campbell Morgan
If this were the end of the story, it would simply be another tragic loss of life. Next week we celebrate the good part of the Good News. But this week we contemplate how much it cost God to defeat sin and death.