During the Lenten season, we are reminded of the trials and tribulations which Jesus endured during his forty days and nights in the desert. The devil offered Jesus all worldly desires, thinking Jesus would be tempted by earthly wealth to give up the promises his Father in heaven had already assured. Ordinary people may well have been tempted by the devil’s offering, but Jesus knew that God’s promise of heavenly rewards were much more important.
After his forty days in the desert, Jesus knew that his life here on earth was coming to an end. He knew that he would be betrayed and crucified. He knew that he would suffer on a cross for our sins, not his own. For all of Jesus’ life, he knew that he would sacrifice himself so that we would be forgiven our sins. He willingly gave himself for us so we would be able to have a heavenly eternity with God—a paradise, a reward for believing in Jesus Christ, the Father and the Holy Spirit.
Why would Jesus give up his life for us—people he didn’t know, people he would never know?
When Jesus was crucified, the first Christians must have felt complete and utter despair! The Son of God was gone and all must have seemed hopeless. But on the third day, Jesus rose from the dead and everything changed for those early Christians! The darkness was gone and in its place was light and love and HOPE!
Jesus’ sacrifice was for us all. He died so all Christians who followed wouldn’t have to worry about eternal damnation. When we believe in Jesus Christ, follow his teachings and do our best to live a Christian life, we have assurance that we will go to heaven with our Father. Jesus’ death and resurrection reminds us of God’s love for us and God’s promise, through his Son, that we will be forgiven our sins when we ask forgiveness.
Jesus gave up his life for us because he knew that as humans we were not perfect. Jesus knew we would be tempted by the devil and some of us wouldn’t have the strength to resist what the devil was offering us. As imperfect humans, we make mistakes and do things we regret and feel sorry. Without Jesus’ sacrifice, our regrets might lead us to believe we are no longer worthy of God’s love and therefore, we might turn away from our Father and his Son, Jesus Christ.
However, Jesus’ death and resurrection means just the opposite! His sacrifice saves us! His selfless act means we will live with Our Father in heaven. Jesus died so we might live, not just here on earth but ultimately in heaven.
I know for some of us here on earth, it’s difficult to believe or think about what will happen at the end of our lives. Most of us are just trying to get through day by day, surviving what the world throws at us. We don’t have time, or spend much time thinking about eternity, but how reassuring is it for Christians to know that one man’s sacrifice means we don’t have to worry about the afterlife? Jesus has secured our place for us already!
Easter, for Christians, is a yearly reminder that we will be with God in heaven. I don’t know about anyone else, but I find that thought very comforting in a world which seems to be so fraught with turmoil and despair. As a Christian, I appreciate the sacrifice Jesus made for me and all people who believe. I pray you all take comfort this Easter and are reassured of God’s love for us all!