CHRIST IS RISEN, HAPPY EASTER
Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” The Jews then said, “It took forty-six years to build this temple, and will You raise it up in three days?” But He was speaking of the temple of His body.
For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol; Nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo decay.
“An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign; and a sign will not be given it, except the sign of Jonah.” And He left them and went away.
knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, is never to die again; death no longer is master over Him.
[Written by Joe Stowell for Our Daily Bread.]
I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. —Galatians 2:20
The bumper sticker “Jesus is my co-pilot” may be a well-intentioned sentiment, but it has always troubled me. Whenever I’m in the driver’s seat of my life, the destination is nowhere good. Jesus is not meant to be just a spiritual “co-pilot” giving directions every now and then. He is always meant to be in the driver’s seat. Period!
We often say that Jesus died for us, which of course is true. But there’s more to it than that. Because Jesus died on the cross, something inside of us died—the power of sin. It’s what Paul meant when he said, “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me” (Gal. 2:20). We were essentially co-crucified with Him. With Jesus in the driver’s seat, the old destinations are off-limits. No more turning down the streets of self-centeredness, greed, or lust. No more off-road ventures into the swamp of pride or the ditch of bitterness. We were crucified with Him and He is at the wheel now! He died so that He alone can drive and define us.
So, if you’ve died and Christ lives in you, He’s not your co-pilot. Your joy is to let Him drive and define your life. There may be a few bumps in the road, but you can count on it—He’ll take you somewhere good.
Lord, I thank You for salvation,
For Your mercy, full and free;
Take my all in consecration,
Glorify Yourself in me. —Codner
Still at the wheel of your life? It’s time to let Jesus drive.
Justification by grace
Charles Spurgeon, AT THE NEW PARK STREET CHAPEL
“Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.” Romans 3:24
Suggested Further Reading: Hebrews 10:11-18
God demanded of Christ the payment for the sins of all his people; Christ stood forward, and to the utmost farthing paid whate’er his people owed. The sacrifice of Calvary was not a part payment; it was not a partial exoneration, it was a complete and perfect payment, and it obtained a complete and perfect remission of all the debts of all believers that have lived, do live, or shall live, to the very end of time. On that day when Christ hung on the cross, he did not leave a single farthing for us to pay as a satisfaction to God. The whole of the demands of the law were paid down there and then by Jehovah Jesus, the great high priest of all his people. And blessed be his name, he paid it all at once too. So priceless was the ransom, so princely and generous was the price demanded for our souls, one might have thought it would have been marvellous if Christ had paid it by instalments; some of it now, and some of it then. Kings’ ransoms have sometimes been paid part at once, and part in dues afterwards, to run through years. But not so our Saviour: once for all he gave himself a sacrifice; at once he counted down the price, and said, “It is finished,” leaving nothing for him to do, nor for us to accomplish. He did not drivel out a part-payment, and then declare that he would come again to die, or that he would again suffer, or that he would again obey; but down upon the nail, to the utmost farthing, the ransom of all people was paid, and a full receipt given to them, and Christ nailed that receipt to his cross.
For meditation: Those who attempt to complete or repeat a finished piece of work insult its maker and render it useless to themselves (Galatians 5:2).
Sermon no. 126
5 April (1857)
Death and life in Christ
‘Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him: knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him. For in that he died, he did unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God. Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.’ Romans 6:8–11
Suggested Further Reading: Revelation 1:12–18
I would to God that on one of these four anchor-holds your faith might be able to get rest.Jesus died, poor trembler; if he died and took your griefs, will not his atonement save you? Rest here. Millions of souls have rested on nothing but Jesus’ death, and this is a granite foundation; no storms of hell can shake it. Get a good hand-hold on his cross; hold it, and it will hold you. You cannot depend on his death and be deceived. Try it; taste and see, and you shall find that the Lord is good, and that none can trust a dying Saviour without being with him in paradise. But if this suffice you not, he rose again. Fasten upon this. He is proved to be victor over your sin and over your adversary; can you not, therefore, depend upon him? Doubtless there have been thousands of saints who have found the richest consolation from the fact that Jesus rose again from the dead. He rose again for our justification. Sinner, hang on that. Having risen, he lives. He is not a dead Saviour, a dead sacrifice. He must be able to hear our plea and to present his own. Depend on a living Saviour; depend on him now. He lives for ever, and therefore it is not too late for him to save you. If you cry to him he will hear your prayer, even though it be in life’s last moment, for he lives for ever. Though the ends of the earth were come, and you were the last man, yet he ever lives to intercede before his Father’s face. O gad not about to find any other hope! Here are four great stones for you; build your hope on these; you cannot want surer foundation—he dies, he rises, he lives, he lives for ever.
For meditation: All kinds of questions, doubts and fears attack our faith (Romans 8:32–34); the very best answers are to be found in the crucified and risen Saviour who intercedes for us at the right hand of God.
Sermon no. 503
5 April (Easter 1863)