He is RISEN! We are saved by His LIFE (Romans 5:10)
How deep and how cleansing was the Passover! And now as we get nearer the end of the days of Unleavened Bread, we have Wavesheaf Day – when the firstfruit of the barley harvest is lifted up to the true God so that the rest of the harvest could be accepted (Leviticus 23:9-11). Remember this was all a picture of our amazing Yeshua, the Son of God.
YOU are accepted now, in Him! In the Beloved.
“…having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, 6 to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.”
On this day, almost two thousand years ago, he tells Mary Magdalene not to cling to him as he had to ascend to be accepted by the Father in behalf of all the rest of the spiritual harvest. “Tell the others”, he says, “I am ascending to my father and your father, to my God and your God” (John 20:17),
Can you imagine the ceremony, the honor, the reunion with his Abba, his dear father? What was it like? As our older Brother Yeshua arrives in heaven, what was it like? How do spirits celebrate? How do they recognize achievement? What is an angelic “motorcade” to the royal palace like? What was the reunion between Abba, our incredibly loving Father – and Yeshua the victorious son – like? He was raised in glory. Father sent him to us as a perfect, innocent, unmarked baby – and we returned him with holes in his side, feet and hands and brutally tortured. But now he shines once more brighter than ten thousand suns in his glory. And all of this because Father and Son were willing that Christ should die so you wouldn’t have to.
And now He LIVES, that we might live by the power of HIS life. In us. With us. HIS life is our covering. HE is our righteousness, as God’s gift, which we get to receive by faith – the very righteousness of God himself. If you doubt this, read these verses: Philippians 3:9-11; Romans 5:15-19 (especially verses 17 and 19), 1 Corinthians 1:30-31; 2 Corinthians 5:21. It’s a gift we don’t hear much about: the gift of HIS righteousness. It’s all there, in the verses I’ve just quoted. Open up your Bible and read those verses again, slowly, prayerfully, and thankfully – and then RECEIVE the gift. (Be watching for a sermon soon on “How well do we receive?” I also have sermons on the Righteousness of God by faith in Nov-Dec. 2010 on this website).
So don’t miss this day. It’s about the risen Christ. Paul wanted to know the power of HIS resurrection (Phil 3:10-11). Christ’s resurrection happened long ago, but you know what? WE are also witnesses of that resurrection when we let HIS resurrection life shine through us. The greatest sermon we can preach is the sermon of a changing life, lived by the spirit of Yeshua in us, walking the same way He always walked – in holiness and obedience to the Way of His Father. When people see you and me, they should see less and less of you and me – and more and more of Yeshua the Messiah to HIS glory. And we thankfully RECEIVE the gifts of His righteousness by the other HUGE free gift of His grace – his unmerited favor that God wishes to pour over us.
For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. 7 For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. 8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. 10 For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. 11 And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.
Let’s celebrate. The tomb is empty. Our Messiah lives. In us. To God’s glory, that no flesh should boast. Thank you Father for raising Yeshua from the dead. Thank you Yeshua that you went through all of that for me, and for each of us.
The more we ponder you – Father and Yeshua – the more we are amazed. And you pour all this out to us by your gracious Holy Spirit, to your glory, amen.
Now – today’s a work day. The harvest is plenteous, but the laborers are few. Let’s get out there in God’s field, in Father’s vineyard, and work while we can. And let’s tell everyone by our changing lives-- about our incredible Messiah, the son of God born as a Jew from Bethlehem who grew up in Nazareth, and gave himself for us – and continues to give and give and give.
For a full explanation of Wavesheaf Day and how it pictures Christ, check out the latest sermon on this website in April 2014. It’s an awesome day, a work day, but don’t forget it.