Monday, March 25, 2013
What Does Easter Mean in Your Life?
The Apostle Paul teaches us that the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, celebrated at Easter, is the foundational truth on which Christian faith, and life is based: "If Christ had not been raised from death, then we have nothing to preach, and you have nothing to believe" ( 1Cor 15:14 ). But the majority of Christians, sad to say, are satisfied to believe in the truth of our Christian faith, but are not interested as to how this truth is related to their lives. The majority of Christians go through their dutiful attendance at Sunday service, but do not find any relevance to what they hear at Sunday Eucharist that could be applied to their lives for the rest of the week. Only an authentic Christian ( may their tribe increase ) understands that salvation is not a simple matter of only confessing with their lips that Jesus is Lord, and believing that God the Father raised Jesus from the dead. Only an authentic Christian will understand that believing in the resurrection of Jesus is to believe in certain truths that are crucial in our Christian life. Believing in the resurrection of Jesus is to believe that, no matter what happens to us, God the Father is in full control of our lives, just as he was in full control of Jesus' life, while he was on earth. Believing in the resurrection of Jesus is to believe that the forces of life will ultimately prevail over the "culture of death" that surrounds us. Believing in the resurrection of Jesus encourages us not to be overcome by the evil in this world, but leads us to hope, and this hope strengthens us in our spiritual warfare against the forces of evil: "The world will make you suffer. But be brave! I have defeated the world" ( Jn 16:33 ). Believing in the resurrection of Jesus is to believe that the fullness of life, which we all seek, will only be gained by resisting and rejecting the present destructive culture of egoism - built on the principles of self-glorification, self-pleasure, self-profit, and self-power: "If anyone wants to come with me," he told them, "he must forget self, carry his cross, and follow me ...." ( Mk 8:34-37 ). Believing in the resurrection of Jesus is to believe that death is not the last word in our dreary lives, but a doorway to abundant, everlasting life. Only atheists regard death as the ultimate absurdity. Is it surprising, therefore, that so many give themselves over to a life of pleasure, profit and power? They live for today, enjoying life to the fullest, for they see nothing after death. If ever we need to strengthen our faith in the resurrection and the significance of the risen Jesus in our lives, it is today. Only our resurrection faith will empower us to withstand the forces of evil in the society we live in, to promote the culture of life, and to emerge victorious no matter what the attacks of the powers of darkness ( 2Cor 4:8-11 ).