Jump Start # 2246
John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.”
My friend, Danny, was leading our thoughts Sunday about the Lord’s Supper. He said the death of Jesus was the greatest event in the history of the world. I totally agree with him. But that got me to thinking about “the history of the world.” There’s been some big moments, both good and bad. There has been events that filled the front pages of newspapers and changed lives.
Here’s a short list:
- Man walking on the moon. What a major accomplishment of engineering, technology and courage.
- The ending of WW II. About 3% of the population of the world died in that war, around 75 million people. When peace papers were signed, literally thousands of lives were spared.
- The invention of penicillin, saved thousands of lives that were headed to death by disease.
- The development of the automobile, the telephone, cell phones, internet, has allowed us to reach more, do more and know more.
- The use of electricity has made life easier
- Medical advancements, including using artificial limbs, transplanting organs, drugs that fight diseases, has kept people alive that decades before would have killed them.
- The discover of new lands made the world larger than what people thought it was
However, the greatest event of all time was the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The death of Jesus did what nothing else could. The death of Jesus changed lives for eternity. Man found a way to put death off. Man found a way to make life easier, more convenient. Man found ways to get along with each other.
But the two things man could not do was to conquer death and to find forgiveness from a God that we had offended. In the death of Jesus, both of these were accomplished. Death is not the end. Death doesn’t change anything other than we leave this place for the next place. It’s merely switching rooms. The pain, the fear, the finality of death, has been smashed by Christ coming out of His tomb. “Up from the grave He arose,” was the death blow to Satan. There was nothing that Satan could do to keep Christ in the tomb. He was defeated by the resurrection. His greatest weapon was death and Christ sent that sailing away by His resurrection. And, His resurrection is the assurance of our resurrection. He arose and so shall we.
But in the death of Christ, a price was paid. A sacrifice was made. The innocent died for the guilty. But, more than that, the pure and the sinless, died for the sinful. No person could do what Christ did on the cross. Others have died saving the lives of others. Others have made the ultimate sacrifice in war and as first responders. They saved the lives of others, but they could not save the souls of others. Only Jesus could do that. Through His death, we were redeemed, reconciled, and justified by God. We are no longer guilty. Our status has changed to being part of God’s family. We have been adopted. God is our Father. We, because of the death of Jesus, belong to God. We are part of God’s family.
Just think about that statement, we are part of God’s family. Because of family name, certain people get into certain places. If you belonged to the Trump family, you could walk through the White House. If you belonged to the Royal family in England, you could spend the night in a castle, many castles. If you belonged to the family of a famous athlete, you might get free tickets, and great seats at a ball game. If you belonged to the family of a famous singer, you might meet legends in the music industry. But all of that comes by being born to the right parents at the right time. It’s luck, we might say. Being part of God’s family, means His home, Heaven, is yours. And, unlike the Royal family, or these other families, anyone can be part of God’s family. There is no “luck” involved. It’s a matter of choice, faith and obedience. God welcomes you into His family.
The death of Jesus changed the eternity for mankind. Before the death of Jesus, all of us, even the best among us, were headed down a dead end street marked Hell. That’s what we deserved. That’s what we were getting. That’s only fair, because we ignored God and sinned against Him. But that one death, a long time ago, in a place far away from where most of us live, changed “forever.” Our future can be filled with hope and assurance. Our future can be bright. Through Christ, there is forgiveness. Through Christ, we can live.
Danny was right. The death of Jesus was the greatest event in the history of the world. No other event was able to touch every single life that has been on this planet, in the past and in the future. No other event was able to undo the wrong that we all have done. No other event was able to crush Satan and release the clutches that he had upon us. No other event moved us from being sinners to saints and allowed us to change our character, our nature and our choices, like the death of Jesus.
Thanks be to God, the apostle said, for His indescribable gift!