Every movie–and many books–has a savior, superhero, chosen one, etc. But who is truly the only one who can save you? What needs saving? What is worth saving?
Batman, Superman, Captain America, Luke Skywalker, Thor, Iron Man, and so many of those other superheroes are beings that have a special “power” to save the earth or universe(s) and the measly beings who live there.
This is probably not the kind of blog post you expected on Easter, but I thought it was fitting. We do need a Savior. But we don’t need one to save earth from all the evil that is taking place on it. There is a lot of evil and bad things, but the Bible tells a very different story from what you will find in any superhero movie or book. Continue reading →
For those who knew and loved the man, that night had been the most horrific act of injustice and cruelty they had ever witnessed. Criminals were often treated in much the same way, sometimes even worse. But what made this man’s trial and punishment so much worse was the fact that He was innocent. Even those who ran the mock trial knew that He was innocent.
They bound the hands of Jesus in the garden where He prayed
The chief priests secretly arrested Him, held an illegal nighttime trial using the false witness of two people whose accounts contradicted each other. After the innocent man admitted that He was the Son of God, the Messiah, He was spat upon, mocked, and struck.
They spat upon the Savior so pure and free from sin
The next morning, He was brought before the governor of the area. This man also was unable to find any fault with the so-called criminal, but the chief priests were insistent that the innocent man be put to death. As the threat of riot became evident, the governor gave in and had Him scourged.
Upon His precious head they placed a crown of thorns
Scourging would often kill a man even before the criminal was put on their cross to be crucified. This innocent man lived through the scourging only to have a crown of thorns put on His head and driven into His scalp as a fake scepter was used to beat Him in the head.
They laughed and said behold the King they struck Him and they cursed Him
He was then stripped and made to carry his cross to Golgotha, the Place of a Skull. There, He was nailed to the cross between two thieves.
When they nailed Him to the cross His mother stood nearby He said woman behold thy Son
Suffering terribly, bleeding, and probably worse, He had no thought for himself, only His people. He made provision for His mother, Mary. He had no thought for Himself as God placed on Him the sins of the entire world, past, present, and future. Can you imagine the weight that was?
Then the sinful work of man was done
Jesus Christ, the Son of God, who lived at the right hand of Him who reigns on high, one of the three persons of the Trinity who was involved in every aspect of creation, life, birth, rebirth, every aspect of every minute detail in the entire universe. This God-man, Jesus came to this earth, gave up his rights to know everything about the future and who knows what else, to come to save us measly human beings from our sins.
To the howling mob He yielded He did not for mercy cry
As the hours slowly passed and Jesus continued to weaken further, an awesome and fear-inspiring thing happened: the sun went dark. For three hours, the land was dark. As 3:00 in the afternoon came, the silence was broken by Jesus’ weak, though powerful voice:
“‘Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?’ that is, ‘My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?’”
The cross of shame He took alone and when He cried it’s finished He gave Himself to die Salvation’s wondrous plan was done
The Savior of the world then gave his life for the sins of us all. He “yielded up His Spirit”. It was not taken from Him, he gave it up willingly. When He had done so, the earth started falling apart.
In Colossians 1:17, it says: “He [Christ] is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.” (emphasis mine)
When Jesus Christ died, the veil in the temple ripped from top to bottom, the rocks split and the earth shook. “The tombs were opened, and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; and coming out of the tombs after His resurrection they entered the holy city and appeared to many.”
Can you imagine what this time would have been like? Was there chaos for three days while Jesus lay dead and in the grave? The Savior of the World, the One who holds all things together was dead. Did God let chaos rule for those three days until He raised His Son to life? We may never know, but it is worth thinking about.
But, even though it is worth thinking about, we should never lose sight of what this day is truly about. Good Friday is about Jesus Christ dying on the cross for YOU. He was perfect and sinless, He did not need to die, but He did and He did so willingly so that no one would perish.
He could have called ten thousand angels
To destroy the world and set Him free
He could have called ten thousand angels
But He died alone for you and me
This video is a beautiful representation of the song I quote throughout my post, “Ten Thousand Angels” by Ray Overholt. Some of the pictures in the video are a little gruesome, so do not let little children watch it, but remember that this is what our Savior went through when He died on the cross for our sins.
As we all prepare to worship this Palm Sunday, we should ask the question “Which one am I?” The day that Jesus entered Jerusalem on the back of a donkey, which person in the crowd would you have been? Would you have been one of the crowd who wanted Jesus to overthrow Rome and set you free? Or would you have been one of those who had at least a small understanding that Jesus wasn’t entering Jerusalem as conquering King, but rather as the Sacrificial Lamb?
If you were one of Jesus’ disciples, what would you have been thinking when Jesus asked you to fetch him a donkey:
When they had approached Jerusalem and had come to Bethphage, at the Mount of Olives, then Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, “Go into the village opposite you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied there and a colt with her; untie them and bring them to Me. If anyone says anything to you, you shall say, ‘The Lord has need of them,’ and immediately he will send them.” This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet:
“Say to the daughter of Zion,
‘Behold your King is coming to you,
Gentle, and mounted on a donkey,
Even on a colt, the foal of a beast of burden.’” (Matthew 21:1-5)
Matthew goes on to say that the disciples “went and did just as Jesus had instructed them”, but what were they thinking as they did so? Did they recall hearing the prophecy from Zechariah? What would you have been thinking?
Jesus had been giving hints and outright saying what would happen when the entered Jerusalem. Would you have believed that Jesus was truly going to die? Or would you have been caught up in the fervor of the moment and simply spent that time worshiping the God-man you expected to be the Conquering King, come to save you from Roman domination?
The disciples went and did just as Jesus had instructed them, and brought the donkey and the colt, and laid their coats on them; and He sat on the coats. Most of the crowd spread their coats in the road, and others were cutting branches from the trees and spreading them in the road. The crowds going ahead of Him, and those who followed, were shouting,
“Hosanna to the Son of David;
Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord;
Hosanna in the highest!”
When He had entered Jerusalem, all the city was stirred, saying, “Who is this?” And the crowds were saying, “This is the prophet Jesus, from Nazareth in Galilee.” (Matthew 21:6-11)
If you were one of Jesus’ disciples, would you have fled the next week when Jesus was betrayed by your friend Judas and arrested by the Chief Priests? When Jesus was buried in the grave, would you have remembered what he had told you?
“For when she poured this perfume on My body, she did it to prepare Me for burial…Then Jesus said to them, “You will all fall away because of Me this night, for it is written, ‘I will strike down the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock shall be scattered.’ But after I have been raised, I will go ahead of you to Galilee.” (Matthew 26:12, 31-32)
Which one are you today? Do you worship Christ as Conquering King, the one will save you from whatever situation, dilemma, or oppression you are facing? Or do you know Him as your Sacrificial Lamb who has taken away your sins?
Happy Valentine’s Day! On this day of promoting love, I wanted to share what true love really is.
True love is sacrificing yourself, your desires, your wants for another person. True love was epitomized on the cross when Jesus, the only sinless man, took our sin on Himself so that we could have eternal life in heav
en. It is only because of Jesus Christ’s sacrifice that we-sinful, wretched beings that we are- can even consider going to heaven.
Today, I praise God that He loved me enough to send His only Son to die for my sins and save me from hell. In honor of Valentine’s Day, I have made a free desktop wallpaper with the words from my favorite hymn. Feel free to download it and share it with others. Have a very happy Valentine’s Day!
Considering the worldwide weather issues with snow in…what does that say? Florida? What will they think of next. Oh, sorry about that, this crazy weather stuff has me a little distracted. Or maybe it’s how busy I am…
Anyway, as I was saying, considering the worldwide crazy weather including snow in places like the Southern US, Jerusalem, England, and many other unusual areas, I decided to write a blog post on preparation. Continue reading →
Today, I have the honor of introducing Valerie Howard today as a guest blogger. I had the honor to proofread her book “Our God Saves” earlier this year. If you still need a present for that book lover of yours, this book would be a wonderful addition to their bookshelf. “Our God Saves” is a book of uplifting testimonies from people of all different backgrounds.
“Our God Saves” Compiled by Valerie Howard
Valerie Howard is a pastor’s wife and stay-at-home mom from Southern Maine. She has a 1-year-old son and two insane beagles who keep her very busy when she’s not writing! Valerie has been writing stories since she was in second grade when she wrote “The Mystery of the Missing Crayon”. Her public school teacher even let the class act out the story and record in on a cassette tape. Valerie is the author of two fiction books for women, one Christmas play, nine unusual children’s books, and now, a compilation book of over 30 personal salvation testimonies. Valerie enjoys scrapbooking and interior design. Continue reading →
I recently read a sermon talking about what being free in Christ meant. The most powerful part of the sermon was the closing illustration. From what I could find, the source of the story is in dispute, so I will just post it here saying that I did not write this and I don’t know for sure who did. Enjoy!