The Paradox of Easter

April 22, 2011

Easter is a special time for me. I will never forget the first Easter I celebrated in 1983, just 6 months after I had become a Christian aged 31 years. I'd grown up as a child enjoying the Easter holidays and the chocolate and as a young father I had introduced my daughters to the same limited pleasures of the secular celebration of Easter. But as Easter approached in 1983 I grasped something that made sense of the strange traditions that I'd been taught in Scripture at school. I understood the significance of more than the narrative about a man who died and then miraculously came back to life.

In my limited understanding of Easter, we were meant to be sad on Friday and able to celebrate on Sunday (with chocolate!). But as I prepared for Easter that year, I had an overwhelming sense of gratitude that God had forgiven my sins, for in God's sight I was now righteous.
"If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." (1 John 1:9).
For the first time I saw in the hideous death of the perfect Son of God that my sins were responsible for his death! The paradox of Easter is that we see God's majesty and power revealed in the resurrection of the Son, but at the same time we bow our heads at the thought that in the brokenness of Jesus on the cross, the love of God is revealed so profoundly for each of us.
"You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us." (Rom 5:6-8)
May God bless you abundantly as we contemplate and give thanks for his mercy, love and kindness demonstrated in Christ.

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