It's Holy Week. For followers of Jesus across the globe, this week is the time when we celebrate the fulfillment of God's plan. For us, these few days represent the pinnacle of history, when Life conquered Death in the person of Jesus Christ, our Savior.
I invite you to gather with us at 6:30 tonight as we celebrate Good Friday. It will be an opportunity to hear, see and feel what the cross of Jesus means for us.
Then I invite you to join us at 9:00 or 10:40 on Sunday morning as we celebrate Easter, the resurrection of Jesus. For ten years now, the leadership team and I have prayerfully tried to deliver the right messages to celebrate the resurrection. Each year I've wrestled with trying to be more creative, more impressive, more impactful even at times preaching something completely different than the resurrection. But what I want everyone to know is this...
At the center of our faith, the core of Christianity, and the foundation of our discipleship is not a new moral code or a new perspective on life - it is an empty tomb! The empty tomb changes everything!
I read of a young pastor who decided that if Easter is the only weekend some people would come to church, then he was going to tell them everything they needed to know about Christianity in one sermon. He preached a 90-minute sermon with a little of everything in it. The next year, Easter Sunday was the lowest attended Sunday of the year.
As our Sunday planning team laid out the messages for this year, I knew for certain what I was going to preach on this Easter Sunday. I'm going to preach about the empty tomb because at the center of our faith is an empty tomb. It declares death has been defeated. Sin, guilt, injustice, addictions, sorrow, and despair have been defeated.
Since Jesus rose from the dead and I know the tomb is empty...
I know God is in control,
I don't have to worry about the future,
I have hope for a better tomorrow,
I won't be trapped in a grave,
I know love triumphs over hate,
I know suffering has significance here and now,
I am more than a conqueror,
I have eternal security,
It is well with my soul.
We have much to celebrate this weekend!
Grace & Peace, Pastor Tom