Why I Love the Empty Tomb

happy easter

Good Friday?  Strange to title such a grotesque day in history as good.

With today being Good Friday and what we as believers celebrate as the day that Christ was crucified on the cross I thought I would take a moment and take a look at the  2 major events that are celebrated over the Easter weekend.  The gospel is clearly lived out and told through the crucifixion of Christ on the cross and the empty tomb of His resurrection.

Sin on the Cross

In the post “What Does Jesus Save Us From?” I explained that we are saved from God’s wrath.  We experience God’s wrath because of our sin (Romans 1:18-32).  What we as humans are desperately in need is for someone to save us from the consequence of our sins, to forgive us of our sins, to pay the penalty of our sins.  God know that the only thing that would satisfy His wrath would be the overwhelming payment of the death of His son Jesus.  How great is it for someone to believe that God would send the rescuer from His own wrath and He sent Himself!  The penalty of our our sin is death (Romans 6:23).  See, someone had to die for our sins, and who is good enough to pay that penalty?  Definitely not us.  Jesus being God in the flesh is the only one who could satisfy the penalty for us, so He endured the cross, shed His own blood, and died in our place.  He took the penalty of our sins upon Himself on the cross.

Our sins are paid for and forgiven on the cross of Christ, but that’s just half of the story, half the Gospel.  What would have happened if Jesus stopped at the cross?

The Empty Tomb

Having our sins forgiven is a miracle in itself, but if God stops there, if He stops with Christ work on the cross we are left forgiven but not alive.  For us, just having not to bear the wrath of God would have been enough.  This is the extreme mercy of God!  But this is not enough for our God!  He wanted us alive!  To live for eternity worshiping Him, living life to the fullest in His unhindered presence.  It is for this reason that on the third day God raised Jesus from ‘the dead (Acts 10:40).  This is the extreme grace of God!  When God raises Jesus from the dead, He paves the ways for us to also raise to life when our earthly bodies die.  When Jesus followers find His tomb empty what they don’t realize they are looking at is how their own tombs will be, how our graves as believers will be…EMPTY!

It Takes Both

If Jesus is just raised from the dead, then our sins are still unforgiven and we have to deal with the wrath of God.  If Jesus is just crucified on the cross then our sins are forgiven but we have no hope of eternity.  This is why this Easter I am asking you to praise Jesus for both the cross and the empty tomb.  Romans 10:9 says,

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.

It is believing that God raised Jesus to life after His death on the cross that saves us from God’s wrath!

This is why I love the empty tomb!

 © Jonathan Haley Uhrig 2014

 

 

What Does Jesus Save Us From?

What Does Jesus Save Us From?

calm-in-the-storm

Easter is this weekend.  It is as basic as it gets for Christians.  We cannot ever forget what Easter is about.  In 1 Corinthians 15, Paul ask us to remember how simple the gospel is.  Jesus died for our sins.  He was buried.  And He was made alive again on the 3rd day.  That is the simple and clear message that thousands of churches around the world will be professing this Easter.  It is this gospel that has the power to save all who believe it (Romans 1:16).  This has led me to recently ask a simple question…  What are we saved from?

Jesus died, Jesus was buried, and Jesus was resurrected.  The gospel is that simple.

For the majority of believers, I am afraid that we have lost sight or even worse, never knew what we needed salvation from.  I started asking Christians the simple question, “What are we saved from?”  I got many answers, many of which weren’t wrong, but they aren’t the answer.  And no, I am not out trying to be a stickler on semantics.  Answers like we are saved from our sins, we are saved from Hell, we are saved from ourselves, and we are saved from Satan.  Yes, all of these are true, but they are all parts of the right answer.  So what is the right answer?

Romans 5:9 “Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him!”

We are saved from the wrath of God!

As believers we must understand that we are saved from the wrath of God.  We must understand that our friends, family, neighbors and co-workers are in danger of suffering the wrath of God.  Did you get that!?!  Those around you that do not follow Jesus are in sever danger of the wrath of God.  God knows this, that is why He sent His son!  We celebrate Easter to remember the event that allows us to be in God’s immediate presence for all of eternity… The Resurrection!

I urge you to take time this Easter weekend to understand that God through Jesus saves us from the wrath of God.  He saves us from His own wrath.  Ponder that!  I also urge you to share Easter.  Your friends, family, neighbors and co-workers desperately need to know they are are facing the wrath of God because of their sins.  Use Easter as that time, no matter where they are in life and what road they are walking down, they are aware that this weekend is Easter, so its already on their minds.

Tomorrow I will address sin as part of Easter.

 © Jonathan Haley Uhrig 2014