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By His Stripes We Are Healed

April 15, 2019 1 comment

Jesus Christ in the holy cross

of black and blue and red
of gashes and slashes and stripes
of hits and harm and hurt

He stumbles and bows and falls
He crumbles and bends and kneels
He gasps and cries and moans

for healing and helping and teaching
for blessing and loving and keeping
for hoping and holding and saving

Isaiah 54:4-5
A Devotional Poem by Luana Ehrlich

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I Found A Reason To Celebrate This Week–Have You?

April 3, 2015 2 comments

CelebrateI believe God wants us to celebrate the milestones of our life.

In the Old Testament, he gave the Israelites seven festivals of celebration each year. That’s a lot of celebrating! However, each festival was also a means of remembering the awesomeness of God and an occasion for teaching about the holiness of God.

In the New Testament, Jesus told his followers to celebrate the meaning of the cross and to do so by using unleavened bread and wine to remember his broken body and his shed blood. Unlike the seven celebrations of the Old Testament festivals, Jesus gave no restrictions on the number of times we could celebrate this event–“For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes.” 1 Corinthians 11:26.

I recently celebrated the day I was born. Although I didn’t feel any differently on March 31st, than I did on March 30th, I marked it as special and didn’t treat it as an ordinary day.

Christians and Jews alike mark this week as special, but for Christians, the most important day this week will be celebrated on Sunday. If this spectacular event—which took place on Sunday some 2,000 years ago—had not happened, then this week would mean nothing. There would be absolutely nothing about this week to mark it as special. Why celebrate the death of a man who claimed to be God? Disillusioned people die every single day.

But this man, this Jesus, who said he was God, who claimed that He and Jehovah were one and the same, backed up those claims by coming back to life. After being pronounced dead, wrapped in a shroud, and placed in a borrowed tomb, He showed himself alive to over 500 people.

While certainly spectacular, resurrections from the dead had occurred before Jesus’ death and even occurred afterward–by His hand and power. But, whereas others resurrected from the dead later died, never to be alive on this earth again, Jesus ever lives!

“Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us” (Romans 8:34).

More importantly—at least for me personally—is the reason behind his intercession for me. The death he died on the cross was the punishment I deserved, both for my sinful nature and for my own willful sins. By accepting Jesus as The One who died in my place, as The One willing to intercede for me before God, I too will be granted eternal life. “Consequently, he is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them” (Hebrews 7:25).

Now, that’s a reason to celebrate!

 

 

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