This is my favorite season of the year. From a Christian perspective, Easter season is the celebration of the Resurrection Day when Jesus rose from the grave. At this time of year, I gratefully think about the sacrifice Christ made on the cross.
The cross has great significance. For the Christian, it is during the Christmas that we contemplate Christ’s birth. Christ came to earth, born as a baby so he could live among us so we could know him. But at Easter, I think about his resurrection. Without his resurrection, Christmas would mean nothing. If Christ were born as a man and died as a man, he would be as any other man. He would be no different than other good men who have lived but who have died. The resurrection then gives meaning to our life because Christ was the first fruits of the resurrection.
I heard this wonderful story. A young graduate assistant at an Ivy League university sat in a coffee house with his professor of philosophy. The two were having lunch and discussing the meaning of life. At the end of the discussion, the student struck a match, and blew it out. He looked at his credentialed professor and posed this question: “Where did the flame go?” As they discussed the subject, the graduate assistant commented to the professor: “ “What do you think… is life like that? Does it burn brightly for a little while and then over time, is snuffed out by death and then is gone?”
The philosopher professor replied in this way: “No one knows…we will be ultimately dust… yet whether there is a God and an ultimate destiny, I have always questioned. I want to believe but I still have doubts. Let me just say that I observe what Aristotle observed. Aristotle said: “We must no more ask whether the soul and body are one than ask whether the wax and the figure impressed on it are one.” I cannot believe that this life is the end of things for any human being. I think there is more but what that is, I am not sure.”
But we can be sure. The significance of the Easter season is to look back at the cross and its message of sacrifice and hope. The message of Easter is that Jesus is alive and it is in his resurrection, and the certainty of eternal life that we can all see the significance of the cross and our purpose for living. Millions through the ages have come to know Jesus because of his sacrifice on the cross. The testimony of that event over 2000 years ago has endured through sophisticated communications, time and distance. That testimony of Jesus’ sacrifice on the Cross has become real in the hearts of millions regardless of culture or nationality, income, education or a lack there of, rich or poor, famous and infamous. Millions through the years have pointed to His saving grace and comfort and peace.
Centuries ago, Job asked this question: “If a man die shall he live again?” Jesus answered that question: “I am the resurrection and the life, He that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live.” (John 11:25) Revelation 21:4 points to eternal life in Christ: “There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”
Death, affliction and hurting will all be part of the way things used to be.
Job’s question was answered on resurrection morning and that answer is assurance for all of us.
Judy Brandon is a Clovis resident. Contact her at: firstname.lastname@example.org