Monday, March 25, 2013

Why Easter is the Super Bowl Sunday of Christianity

Would football Jesus be the coach, the quarterback, or the wide receiver?
Did you know that Easter is bigger than Christmas?  I know it may not seem like it.  For Christmas, we spend months decorating, planning, and shopping.  We dish out a thousand or more dollars to buy gifts and host huge parties.  We go on vacations and return home to visit family.  We tell elaborate stories about Santa, Rudolph, and Frosty and we might even set up a Nativity scene and go to midnight mass or service.

On Easter, we paint eggs, eat candy, have dinner, and call it a day.  But I'm telling you, Easter is bigger than Christmas.  Easter is the biggest day of the year for Christians.  It's our Super Bowl Sunday.  Why?

Well let me ask you this: What's more important, the day Frodo is given the ring or the day he drops it into the fires of Mount Doom?  What's more significant, the day Tony Stark built his first Iron Man suit or the day he saved the world from an alien invasion?  The day the plan for Argo was drafted by Tony Mendez or the day those Americans made it back home?  The day Abraham Lincoln was born or the day he issued the Emancipation Proclamation?

Enough comparisons, let's get back to Jesus.  What's bigger, the day the Savior was born or the day the Savior actually triumphed?

There is no bigger day for Christianity than Easter!  In fact, it's so important that Paul says that if Jesus didn't rise from the dead then you're faith is useless (1 Cor 15:14 and 17).  On Easter, we celebrate that Jesus not only was born, not only lived a great life, not only died in our place, but that Jesus was victorious!  By His resurrection, Jesus proved that He had conquered all of our great enemies.

But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep... But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. - 1 Corinthians 15:20, 58

Jesus conquered Satan by His resurrection and showed that He is the King of this world and His power is greater than the evil one's.  We don't have to be afraid of the devil anymore.  Our King is bigger and better and stronger.  No plan or scheme of the enemy can ever harm a child of God.  Our God lives!  Our God is victorious!

Jesus conquered sin by His resurrection and proved that we can be forgiven through Him and freed from the bondage of sin. We no longer have to live in fear of God's judgment or feel wracked with guilt for our mistakes. We no longer have to struggle without hope against our secret sins whether they be pride, gossip, pornography, alcohol, drugs, sleeping around, or whatever.  There is freedom and a way out.  Sin has been defeated.  Our God lives!  Our God is victorious!

Jesus conquered death by His resurrection and wrenched us from the grip of our greatest and oldest foe.  We no longer live in fear of that day that's coming for us all.  When a Christian dies, it's as much a party as it is a funeral because we know that death is not the end.  Death cannot hold us because it could not hold Him.  The grave doesn't have the final word, Jesus does.  To us, death is sad but it is also overwhelmingly joyous because to die is to be alive with Christ forevermore.  We Christians can look death in the face and ask, "Where, O death, is your victory?  Where, O death, is your sting?" (1 Cor 15:54b-55)  Our God lives!  Our God is victorious!

Easter is our Super Bowl Sunday because it is the day we celebrate that Jesus is victorious and, for those of us who have put our faith in Him, so are we.  We have victory over Satan because Jesus conquered him.  We have victory over sin because Jesus broke its chains.  We have victory over death because Jesus rose again!

Do you have that victory?  If you'd like to be free from Satan, sin, and death, you can.  If you declare with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. --  Romans 10:9-10  If you've put your faith in Jesus today, let me or a Christian friend know so we can help you take your first steps of faith.

I hope these truths settle in you deeply this week and that you have a Happy Easter as you celebrate Jesus' victory!

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