Op-Ed from Richard Landauer of Grace Community Church in Shelley
Over the years I have noticed that Easter and Christmas are the most attended Church services of the year. We are drawn to celebrate together significant historical events in Church history. Christmas celebrates the birth of The Savior which God foretold centuries before. There would be a time when a King came to save a multi-ethnic people from their sins because of God’s great love for them. Easter is the celebration of the ultimate sacrifice of Jesus for our sins.
In the Gospel of John, Jesus said this: “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down oneâ€™s life for oneâ€™s friends” (John 15:13 NIV).
God’s love for us is so great that he gave His only Son to die for us.
There have been lots of martyrs in history. Jesus (God made flesh) is the only one who was resurrected three days later. The tomb in which He was buried is empty. It was foretold by Him (Luke 9:22-27) and as many as 500 people saw him to prove it (1 Cor. 15:6).
During Easter, we celebrate His death because He died for you and me. He is the sacrificial lamb slain for our sins. We also celebrate His resurrection in that it is the clear proof of God’s power over death and reigns as Lord over all (Rom. 1:4, 4:25).
Before His death, Jesus prayed for His disciples and for you and me. In John 17, Jesus prayed that His followers work in unity to glorify the Father.
He prayed: “that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me,” (John 17:21 NIV).
We believe that God sent His one and only Son to die for our sins and that His power is over death. The power is to draw Christians from around the world together in unity and spirit to celebrate the one true God so that we can believe in the one He has sent.
I pray that in one voice we shout from the mountain tops: “He is risen, He is risen indeed!”
EDITOR’S NOTE: A previous version of this op-ed incorrectly claimed Richard Landauer is the pastor of Grace Community Firth in Shelley. He is not.