Community of Christ Enduring Principles Spotlight
Pursuit of Peace (Shalom)
You may be familiar with the Christmas song “Mary’s Boy Child / O My Lord” by Boney M that plays somewhat incessantly over the Christmas radio music period each year. A recurring line in the song is personal pet peeve of mine: “And man will live for evermore because of Christmas Day.” From the perspective, I suppose, that Jesus had to be born in order to eventually die and be resurrected, there may be some validity to the line. But, my friends, if there is any such attribution to be made, “All of us will live for evermore because of Easter Day.”
Then, not to put too much of a fine point on it, it is not “the Day” that is important – it is the event of the day.
Let’s back up briefly. The scriptural records tell us that Jesus and his disciples spent the week celebrating Passover in Jerusalem, beginning with his entry into the city on Palm Sunday (see last week’s MCP Message). On Thursday evening Jesus celebrated the feast of the Passover with his friends in “the Upper Room” and the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper was instituted. They moved from there to the Mount of Olives to engage in prayer. It was here that Judas betrayed Jesus with a kiss and Jesus was arrested by the Romans.
On Friday, after a series of appearances before the Jewish and Roman authorities Jesus was whipped and then was sentenced to death by crucifixion. He died on a cross between two thieves nailed to their own crosses. He was buried in a tomb at the beginning of the Sabbath with no time to properly prepare his body as required by Jewish tradition. On Sunday morning, under slightly different circumstances according to each of the Gospels, the women discovered the empty tomb and became aware that Jesus has been resurrected – he had risen from the dead.
And THIS, my friends, is the event that solidifies the promise of eternal life into Christian faith. In Jesus’ subsequent appearances to his disciples and friends he reinforces that this is what his earthly ministry has been about – bring about the immortality and eternal life of all humans.
I invite you to participate in any of the many online opportunities this weekend to celebrate the events of all of Easter weekend. References and links can be found elsewhere in this “Weekly Wire” as well as on the World Church website at www.cofchrist.org. Take a few moments to remind yourself, along with your brothers and sisters in faith from around the world, that because JESUS IS RISEN on Easter, you have been given the promise and opportunity of eternal life through Jesus Christ.
As always, I pray for you God’s blessings of joy, hope, love, and peace in these challenging times.
Canada West Mission Centre President
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