He’s alive! After the darkness of watching Him die and the days of doubt and fear that followed, on the third day He does exactly what He said He would do and returns to life. Even though Jesus had been very specific with them, I’m sure this was so hard for His disciples to wrap their minds around! People don’t just die and then return to life! But this was no ordinary man; this was the Son of God.
Jesus’ resurrection is what our faith hinges on. If He had lived, shared the good news of who God really was and then died, He would have been just like any other prophet that had lived before Him. But by conquering the grave and cheating death itself of the victory, Jesus proved that He was exactly who He said He was – the Messiah, our Savior.
Jesus gave us our “marching orders” in what is known as the Great Commission; go out and tell others about Me, teach them, baptize them and keep the cycle going. And the greatest revolution the world has ever known has been in full swing since then. He even told us how to do it, what would distinguish us from the rest of the world and would win people over to Him – the way we love. Not our strength, not our hate, not our political views, but by the way we love. So simple, and yet so powerful.
Love comes up as the very first fruit listed in the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23) – the fruit that the Holy Spirit produces in our lives when He is allowed to be living and active. What if every single action that we took had to first pass through the filter of love: Are these words that I’m about to speak really loving? Does this action show love? Is this thought loving? What if we began to look at our thoughts, attitudes and actions this way? What might change in us? How might our relationships change? What doors would God open for us to share about Him?
Jesus loved us so much that it compelled Him to take on our sins and die for us. We have been loved enormously and because of that, Jesus asks us to love others in return. Do others see a difference in you because of Jesus? Would loving be one of the characteristics someone would use to describe you? I pray that we all spend some time focusing on that this week and asking Jesus how we can love more like He does.
Executive Director of Education and Outreach