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The Greatest Love-Story Of All Time: Epilogue
“I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” Jesus (John 14:6 NASB (Note 2))
We started this Easter love-story tapestry with 1 Corinthians 13:13  – three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love.  We end the GLOAT (The Greatest Love-story Of All Time) with the love of salvation.  Of Jesus as the way, the truth, and the life. Of Eternal life.  Saying this made Jesus one of a lunatic (He believed what He said, but it was not true, in which case He was a certifiable lunatic), a liar (He was sane, but knowingly lied), or our Lord and everything He claimed to be was true. (Note 1) Christianity, therefore, if false, is of no importance. But, if true, is of infinite importance. The only thing it cannot be is moderately important.
So here is the thing.   Was Christ a lunatic, a liar, or God? The time is short. Choose wisely.
Note 1: Jesus’s claim to be God can not be rejected by saying He was simply a great moral teacher, but not the Son of God. A man who was merely a man, and who said the sort of things Jesus said, would not be a great moral teacher.
Note 2: Adapted from Mere Christianity, C. S. Lewis
Easter2023, 42/42

Sunday, April 16

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The Ascension
After saying this, He was taken up into a cloud while they were watching, and they could no longer see Him. As they strained to see Him rising into heaven, two white-robed men suddenly stood among them. “Men of Galilee,” they said, “why are you standing here staring into heaven? Jesus has been taken from you into heaven, but someday He will return from heaven in the same way you saw Him go!”  Acts 1:9-11 NLT
This Easter season, our celebration of Jesus’s life, death, and resurrection, is coming to an end.   Let us march onward In the spirit of Easter, living each day as Jesus would have us live. And ready ourselves for either His return, or our earthly death, judgment, and joyous Heavenly reunions.
Easter2023, 41/42

Saturday, April 15

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The Great Commission
The Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.  Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”  Matthew 28:18-20 NIV

Friday, April 14

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The Seven Next Words of Christ
  1. Why are you crying? Who are you looking for?
  2. Greetings…. Don’t be afraid.
  3. What are you so concerned about?
  4. Peace be with you.
  5. Go into the world.
  6. Have you caught any fish?
  7. Wait for the gift.
And then this: “And lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”  Matthew 28:20 NKJV
Easter2023, 39/42

Monday 9:00AM

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The Seven Next Words of Christ /3
On The Road to Emmaus: What are you so concerned about?  Luke 24:17
As they talked and discussed these things, Jesus himself suddenly came and began walking with them. But God kept them from recognizing Him.
“We had hoped He was the Messiah who had come to rescue Israel.”
“Wasn’t it clearly predicted that the Messiah would have to suffer all these things before entering His glory?” Then Jesus took them through the writings of Moses and all the prophets, explaining from all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself.
When He was at the table with them, He took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them. Then their eyes were opened, and they recognized Him; and He vanished from their sight.   Luke 24:15-31
Easter2023, 34/42

Monday 8:00AM

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Easter And The Wrath Of God
Easter is about sin. And redemption. And the wrath of God.
Our ticklish ears no longer desire to hear this Truth.  We prefer to ignore that there is such a thing as God’s wrath. The realization of it makes us uneasy, so we dismiss it. Others try to believe there is no such thing. They argue that God is loving and merciful, and therefore God’s anger is merely a bogeyman with which to frighten naughty children.  Some Christians (and others) confuse the God of the Old Testament and The God of the New Testament. They see them as two different Gods, the Old Testament God being one of wrath and judgment, and the New Testament God being love and forgiveness.  These composite denials lead to the Worldview of Pluralism, the moral relativistic theory that there are many paths to God. This lie from the pit of Hell completely denies the Providence of Easter – that Jesus lived, died on the cross, and rose again on the third day. God did not allow His only Son to suffer the anguish and horror of Crucifixion that there would be a middle way.
The Truth is that the God of the Old Testament is the God of the New Testament.  He is immutable.  Along with His other attributes, the attributes of love and wrath are equal parts of His character.  It is true that God’s wrath is on display in the Old Testament. However, the greatest wrath ever poured out by God was not in the Old Testament. It was the sin of the world poured out on His son Jesus as He hung on a Roman cross. It was poured out so that our sin could be redeemed.  So that we would have a path back to the God of Creation
Sin exists and is abhorrent to God.  God does not negotiate sin.  Never has.  Never will. Sin calls down the wrath of God. Coming face to face with this Truth is essential for our salvation. Only if we understand and accept the Truth of sin can we have eternal life in the Kingdom of God.  If we do not, we will have eternal life in that other place.  And make no mistake, Hell is a real place.
Some get the Truth of the cross on its face. Others of us don’t get it right away. We gather information. Then it must settle within our hearts. Only when we have fully digested what we’ve learned, does the Truth sink in.
On the road to Emmaus Jesus does not reveal Himself to the men while they are on the road. He waits until they have arrived at their destination and are preparing to enjoy a meal before He allows the men’s eyes to be opened.  The men do not seem extraordinarily surprised when they finally realize it had been Jesus that whole time; “Were not our hearts burning within us while He talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?” (Luke 24:32)  It took a little time for their hearts and their heads to catch up with each other, but they finally did, and they knew the truth instantly and completely.
We can never truly move on from the magnificence of Easter without fully understanding the display of God’s love andwrath at the cross.  And the miracle of the third day.
Easter2023, 33/42
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