Growing up, I didn’t really think much more of Easter than being a time of excessive amounts of chocolate, hot cross buns and a lot of days off school. Every year, my parents, played the Easter bunny and put chocolate on my bed while I slept.
I thought it was a miracle I never woke up but as I’ve come to learn, there are far more important miracles that occur over the Easter time.
Why is it Good Friday?
As I learned more about what happened 2000 years ago, I started thinking that Easter was actually a really sad time.
I questioned: why is it Good Friday?After all, Jesus died. The Saviour, the Messiah, the Son of God died, and not only did he die but he died in one of the most awful ways possible through crucifixion. Prior to this, he was beaten and spat on. What terrible suffering he endured.
However, when we read of Good Friday and Jesus’ crucifixion in the word, we know that Jesus fulfilled all the prophecies set before him, highlighted by his last words ‘it is finished’ (John chapter 19, verse 30).
It is up for discussion how many prophecies Jesus fulfilled but it may be approximately 300. It’s pretty amazing that these prophecies were made so that we could recognise that Jesus is the Messiah and that he worked to fulfil them right up until his death.
He has paid the price
Moreover, Good Friday is good because when Jesus died, he took on our sin and paid the price of it through his death. ‘For the wages for sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.’(Romans chapter 6, verse 23).
If it weren’t through Jesus paying the price of death for our sin, we would not be able to be made right with God and now have personal relationships with him through Jesus. I really love the verses in Colossians which describe how we are now hidden in Christ and that when God sees Jesus, we are there too (Colossians chapter 3, verses 3-4).
On the third day, Jesus rose from the tomb. He is alive and he has conquered death. The resurrection of Jesus is an amazing thing to celebrate. He put our sin to death and rose to show that nothing can overcome him. This shows us that Easter is to be a time of celebration. It is a time where we are reconciled to God.
Personal relationship with God
I think we sometimes become awfully complacent with the fact that we can pray directly to God because of Jesus. We know God is right there, waiting for us to just talk to Him, so we often don’t.
But, if Easter can help us reflect on a few things, shouldn’t we be so grateful that we live in this time? That we can pray to God and have a personal relationship with him.
I love how my home church does Easter. Usually, as is the case this year, we have a reflective service on Friday and a celebration service on Sunday. A celebration of the reconciliation of us to God and of Jesus’ sovereignty, even over death.
Freedom of the resurrection
Reflecting further on Easter, I’m prompted to think that if we have accepted Jesus as our Saviour, believing He died on the cross and rose again and we shall be reunited in the future, then we live in the freedom of His resurrection.
That means that death has no hold on us, so why do we worry about the little things in life? Why are we consumed by things that we won’t remember in a month’s time or things that don’t have a real effect on anything?
Of course, we can pass these worries onto God, but I think we need to get better at recognising that there are some things that we don’t need to worry about in the first place.
Furthermore,in the freedom of the resurrection we can find freedom from the fear of what other people think of us. So often we hold back from saying or doing things we believe in or want to do because we are worried about what other people might think of us.
Jesus came to put fear to death and there is no use in comparing ourselves to one another. We are all equal before God and Jesus’ death covers all of us.
No longer do we need to worry or be afraid. If Jesus, who we have a personal relationship with, can conquer death, then what do we need to worry about? If we lean into Jesus, we can establish a posture of resilience, patience, gratitude and service which can only be of benefit for us and those around us.
Rebecca Hoverd studies law and geography at The University of Auckland and loves writing as a way to communicate with God and to unpack her thoughts. She loves coffee, conversations, and would love to hear your feedback at firstname.lastname@example.org.