|Illustration by Jim LePage|
Then Sunday comes. Easter.
Easter is by far my favorite holiday.
This morning I breathed the cool morning air and was reminded that one day, after I am long gone and buried, I will breathe again.
Easter is not about Christ's death. Neither is it about we as Christians dying and "going to heaven." Easter is about God's vindication. It's about God's triumph over death and our subsequent triumph that will occur in the future. Christ is the first fruit of the resurrection, and we are promised to follow (1 Cor. 15). Christ's past is our future.
Many times we emphasize God's sacrificial death and focus very little on his resurrection. Honestly, Christ's death isn't enough. We in the West seem to talk a lot about the justifying nature of Christ's death, but I think that the Eastern Church gets it right. If Christ only came to die, then he could have been killed in the slaughtering of the innocents and provided atonement for our sins. No, there's more to it. The wages of sin is not just spiritual death; it's physical death.
The spiritual consequences of sin have been undone through Christ’s death, but the physical consequences are still upon us. This is the promise of the resurrection: Christ will defeat death once and for all in his second coming. Without his return, our hope in God is futile.
Did the grass rejoice when it felt Jesus once again? Did the wind dance when God breathed again? Did they mourn when he ascended into heaven?
I miss someone I've never really even met. But my soul and my dying body eagerly anticipate my Savior's return, when both spiritual and physical death will be finally overturned.