This weekend the Western world is celebrating Easter. The time when God proved His love to us. A love greater than our mistakes, stronger than our rebellion, more adamant than our stubbornness. Love that can never be lost, love that is eternal.
Love, not as we know it but as it can be.
”But God demonstrates His own love for us in this:
While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8
I want you to close your eyes and see God as a loving Judge faced with a difficult situation. Our sins demanded condemnation- which is death (we know from the Bible that the payment for sin is death), yet love demanded forgiveness. But as God is a Holy God, He couldn’t just turn a blind eye to our mistakes and say they never happened (that wouldn’t be just). Instead, he found a ransom for us. Someone strong enough to bear the sentence in our place. Someone who would die for us so we could be saved. Saved from what? From an eternal separation from Himself- the source of love and of all good things- and from an empty existence.
Another beautiful aspect of God’s love is revealed by the Person that was deemed suitable to take the blow in our place. It wasn’t an angel, another prophet or a good man on the planet that was sacrificed for us. It was His only begotten Son. This proves the great importance and value we found in His eyes. Our souls and our destinies are so important to God that He was willing to do whatever it took to ensure that we’ll end up in the right place. So He sent Jesus Christ, our Older Brother, who for 30 years lived humbly among men in a town of Israel and let himself prepared for the Mission.
He came and lived a perfect life, a life that convinced His friends and disciples who accompanied Him for three years that He is indeed the Son of God, the promised Messiah. And then He died, bearing the weight of everybody’s sins on the cross. He- the Lord of Lords- could have saved Himself from the crucifixion, but He didn’t do so, because of us. Jesus too, loved us and loved God. So on a Friday night, with arms wide open, He embraced the guilty world in an embrace of love, accomplishing the greatest victory humanity needed. Victory over sin and over all the things that can subjugate us, humans. Love has won and has set us free. That’s what we celebrate on Sunday morning when- almost 2,000 years ago- the empty tomb proved that Love never dies.
”For God so loved the world
that He gave His only begotten Son
that whoever believes in Him shall not perish
but have everlasting life.” John 3:16
The only thing we have to do today is To Believe in Him, the Son of God and in what He did for us. Forgiveness and Salvation are a gift (we don’t earn our ‘entry’ to Heaven in the same way as we don’t have to earn God’s love) but as any other gift it must be accepted to be enjoyed.
Let us open our hearts to this everlasting love of God that is constantly pursuing us, constantly looking for us, waiting, waiting, waiting….
In a way, we all are prodigal sons. Our sins and disobedience to God, our desire to live life on our own terms, separated us from the Father, just like it did the son from Jesus’ parable. As we are told in this parable which portrays God’s heart, the Father didn’t forsake His wondering child but waited for him with a patience that only love can sustain. When the prodigal son finally came back home, he was received with embraces and kisses by his parent. He was long awaited! What a love, what a welcome!
Indeed, love not as we know it but as it can be.
Our response to God determines our future. He already did everything necessary to bring us back. Jesus paid for the ticket but will we board the plane? Will we trust Him for the journey?
The answer is a matter of heart. A great adventure is awaiting us!
Happy Easter everyone!