The C3 April theme is “The Power of the Resurrection”. We are entering two of the most celebrated times on the Jewish and Christian calendars, Passover and Easter. This year I believe with the Covid-19 pandemic and the timing of the celebrations we should pay close attention and open our eyes to the work our heavenly Father is doing in this season. Just like the Sons of Issachar, we must be wise and know the season and what we are to do during this season (1 Chronicles 12:32).
The Festival of Passover
Tomorrow evening, March 8th at 6pm will begin the festival of Passover as outlined in Exodus 12. As I read through this passage, I thought about how Moses was to lead the people of God out of Egypt and the slavery they had experienced. They were to paint their doorpost with the blood of the sacrificial lamb so that the angel of death would pass over their house and they would be released to leave Egypt and be free to worship God. Upon their release, they experienced many miracles like the parting of the Red Sea, the destruction of the army pursuing them, manna, etc.
As we reflect on Passover this year, let us be thankful that our Heavenly Father, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob has provided His only Son to release us from the bondage of sin. We can celebrate the offering of the only perfect sacrifice that allows us to come boldly before the throne of God sinless, not because of our perfection, but because of the finished work of the cross.
The Darkness of Good Friday
The day Jesus paid the price no other human being could pay was a dark day for Him and his disciples. This darkness was required to take on the sins of the world. Luke 23-44-49 describes this time, “It was now about noon, and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon, for the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.” When he had said this, he breathed his last. The centurion, seeing what had happened, praised God and said, “Surely this was a righteous man.” When all the people who had gathered to witness this sight saw what took place, they beat their breasts and went away. But all those who knew him, including the women who had followed him from Galilee, stood at a distance, watching these things.”
The darkness that covered the land and the hopelessness they felt watching Jesus be crucified must have been overwhelming. Often when we are in the darkness it is difficult to be hopeful. We must look beyond our circumstances and place our trust in the promises of God. When I was in a difficult season, my friend and mentor gave me the following verse in Isaiah 50:10-11, “Who among you fears the Lord and obeys the word of his servant? Let the one who walks in the dark, who has no light, trust in the name of the Lord and rely on their God. But now, all you who light fires and provide yourselves with flaming torches, go, walk in the light of your fires and of the torches you have set ablaze. This is what you shall receive from my hand: You will lie down in torment.” This scripture encouraged me to trust in God when I couldn’t see the path before me and not try to light my own fires to illuminate a path that was not intended for me.
The Power of the Resurrection
The darkness was overcome by the light of the resurrection! When Jesus arose from the grave, He provided a way for us to spend eternity with Him and realize who we were created to be. We are now free to pursue the Good News of the Gospel that provides hope for each of us that follow Jesus.
Jesus knew His purpose and the plan God had for Him when He walked on this earth. The Apostle John clearly states this in John 3:16-17, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” When we embrace the truth of God’s Word we can live a lifestyle of celebration.
A Lifestyle of Celebration
I was recently reminded of a scripture in Habakkuk 3:17-19 that I find appropriate for the season we are in. “Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior. The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to tread on the heights.” This reminds me when things are dark or uncertain I can still have a lifestyle of celebration.
Join me as we look beyond these difficult circumstances and celebrate the power of the resurrection and the gift of the Holy Spirit that enables each of us to live a lifestyle of celebration, even when the world seems to be going crazy.
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Jamie Jordan is the State Director for the South Carolina Christian Chamber of Commerce (SC-C3). His passion is to see unity and excellence exhibited within the Christian community. Jamie can be reached at email@example.com.