Easter—What’s the Big Deal?
“For Christ also sufferered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God.”
1 Peter 3:18 (NIV UK)
While I was driving home from work I turned on the radio and heard a reporter ask the following question: “So what’s the big deal with Christ’s death? Sure, crucifixion is painful, but he was only up there for a few hours. It was almost [as if] Jesus just had a bad weekend.”
I was shocked. I’d never heard it put that way! But the question got me thinking: why is Christ’s death so important? Was it just the amount of physical suffering he experienced? Why is it so special? I think we can look at it like this:
Christ was betrayed, tortured and crucified. And he did suffer a tremendous amount of pain. But the Bible tells us that there was so much more happening in that moment. Colossians 1:21-22 says, “Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behaviour. But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation.”
Christ’s death wasn’t simply about physical pain. By offering himself as a sacrifice on our behalf, he took on the whole weight of our guilt and alienation from God. He willingly suffered all the consequences of our distrust and disobedience to God.
On the cross he submitted to the loving and just judgment of God, and our corrupt sin-natures were condemned to death in him. He joyfully paid this price so that we could be given new natures, be filled with his life and stand, reconciled to God, with no barriers between us.
And that’s why his death and resurrection are a “big deal”!
As we celebrate Easter, we remember that while Christ suffered physically, let’s not forget that spiritually, his sacrifice brought us back into communion with God. For him, it wasn’t a bad weekend—far from it! This was the weekend of Holy Passion when his great redemptive plan was accomplished! And with that in mind, we really do have something to celebrate!
Holy Father, thank you for Christ’s loving sacrifice for us. This was no minor headache or bad weekend, this was suffering for us, when he had done nothing to merit any suffering on his part. That sacrifice stands as the supreme sacrifice for others, voluntary, unmerited and everlasting in its merit for the pardon of us sinners. In Jesus’ name we pray.
Study by Joseph Tkach
About the Author:
Joseph Tkach is the President of Grace Communion International (the Denominational name of The Worldwide Church of God UK), and resides in California, USA. You are welcome to attend one of our local Church congregations located throughout the UK and Ireland. For details of your nearest local congregation, check on our website, www.wcg.org.uk under the ‘Churches’ tab, or ring +44 (0)1858 437099.