It is a new year. It is a time to remember and reflect on the things of God. It is time to observer the greatest gift ever given to humanity. It is a time to remember and reflect on this gift.
16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
(John 3:16-17 New International Version)
We remember and reflect on the fact that God loved us, ALL OF US so much that he gave all that he had to give for the redemption of creation and our salvation. He could have easily condemned all of us, but he did not. God was the only one who could save us, he had to sacrifice to do it and he did.
9 The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. 11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. 12 Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— 13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God. 14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
(John 1:9-14 New International Version)
We remember and reflect on the fact that Jesus stepped out of the splendor of heaven and came to earth as a man and all who accept him will become a part of his family. We remember that when Jesus came is revealed to us truth and he gave us grace.
Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering,
yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted. 5 But he was pierced for our transgressions,
he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us
peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.
6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way;
and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.
(Isaiah 53:4-6 New International Version)
We remember and reflect on the fact that our salvation required suffering, and Christ suffered for us. Because of his suffering you and I are healed from the sole destroying damage of sin. We remember that we have gone astray and still Jesus calls to us. Still Jesus was willing to suffer for us.
“Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” And they divided up his clothes by casting lots.
(Luke 23:34 New International Version)
We remember and reflect on the example of forgiveness that Jesus gives us. As he hung on the cross he did not lash out in anger nor did he curse his persecutors. He forgave them. With this act he gave us an example. Let us ask ourselves how good we have been at forgiveness.
29 A jar of wine vinegar was there, so they soaked a sponge in it, put the sponge on a stalk of the hyssop plant, and lifted it to Jesus’ lips. 30 When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
(John 19:29-30 New International Version)
We should remember and respect that all the work of salvation has been done. There is nothing that we can do to save ourselves. Jesus did all the work on the cross. It is finished.
THE TOMB IS EMPTY
Most of all we must remember that the tomb is empty. Jesus did more than die. Jesus was victorious over death and the grave. When we come to Jesus he shares that victory with us. We are made new and although our bodies my die we will have eternal life through Jesus. Let us remember. Let us reflect.