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You need to only look around to see that many trivialize the work of God. Whether you walk into stores, watch television, read social media, or even by looking at some events held by “churches’ you see that Holy week is not seen as significant by the world.
The death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ are foundational to the Christian faith and are the most significant events in the history of humanity. The significance of these events cannot be overstated. They represent the very heart of the Gospel message, which is the Good News of reconciliation by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. Holy week is holy for several reasons:
We are all sinners in need of God’s abundant grace.
The Bible teaches that all are sinners and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). Our sin separates us from God and we are incapable of fulfilling the righteous requirements of the Law (Galatians 3:10). Every human being is born with a sinful nature that separates us from God. We cannot earn our way into a right relationship with God through our own efforts. The law of God demands perfection, but we are incapable of fulfilling its righteous requirements. We are incapable of saving ourselves from the penalty of our sin (Romans 6:23).
The Apostle Paul emphasizes this point in his letter to the Romans, “For by works of the law no human being will be justified in His sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin. But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it” (Romans 3:20-21).
Puritan preacher, John Owen, wrote, "The only way whereby we may be delivered from the wrath to come, and obtain eternal life, is by faith in Jesus Christ."
The Bible makes it clear that we are all in need of God’s abundant grace, which is His unmerited favor towards us. No matter how hard we try, it is impossible to fulfill the righteous requirement of the Law on our own. We need a Savior who can do for us what we cannot do for ourselves.
Charles Spurgeon, a prominent Christian preacher in the 19th century, spoke of the need for grace when he said, "Grace is free sovereign favor to the ill-deserving. Grace is not only undeserved favor, but it is favor shown to the one who has deserved the very opposite."
There is no other way for reconciliation between God and man.
Jesus said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6). The death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ are the only means of reconciliation between God and humanity. The Bible states that “there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).
“For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself as a ransom for all people” (1 Timothy 2:5-6). Jesus is the only way to God. He is the bridge that spans the gap between our sin and God’s holiness.
Charles Spurgeon, in his sermon on Romans 3:23, said, "There is no other door by which sinners may enter heaven except by the door of the gospel." He also wrote, "There is no hope of mercy, no way of salvation, but through the death of Christ."
The Puritan preacher, John Owen, spoke of the need for reconciliation when he wrote, "Christ alone can reconcile us to God. He alone can remove the enmity, and make us friends. He alone can bear the wrath of God against sin, and so make it consistent with His justice to forgive us."
The death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus the Christ inaugurate and ratify the new covenant.
Jesus Himself explained that His death, burial, and resurrection inaugurated and ratified the new covenant between God and humanity. At the Last Supper, Jesus said, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is poured out for you” (Luke 22:20).
Scripture says, “For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed” (1 Corinthians 5:7). This is the fulfillment of God’s promise to save His people and to establish a new covenant of grace alone through the atoning work of God the Son. God’s promise to put His law within His children, and write it on their hearts; “And I will be their God, and they shall be my people.” (Jeremiah 31:31-34).
The author of Hebrews emphasizes the significance of the new covenant, “For this reason, Christ is the mediator of a new covenant, that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance-now that He has died as a ransom to set them free from the sins committed under the first covenant” (Hebrews 9:15).
Puritan theologian, John Calvin, wrote of the new covenant when he said, "The covenant of grace, which God made with man after the fall, is not different from the covenant which He made with Abraham; for he is called the father of all the faithful, because he was the first to receive the promise of salvation by faith."
As the writer of Hebrews explains, “Now there have been many of those priests, since death prevented them from continuing in office; but because Jesus lives forever, He has a permanent priesthood. Therefore He is able to save completely those who come to God through Him, because He always lives to intercede for them” (Hebrews 7:23-25).
At the Last Supper, Jesus took bread and said, "This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me." He then took the cup and said, "This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood" (Luke 22:19-20).
That we might no longer live for ourselves.
Grace is not license to sin. The atoning death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ does not only provide salvation, but they also transform our lives. Christians are no longer slaves to sin, but are free to live for Christ. Because of what Jesus Christ has done for us, we no longer live for ourselves but rather for the One who handed Himself over to death on our behalf, He living in and through us.
The death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ have a transformative impact on the lives of believers. The Apostle Paul wrote, “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me” (Galatians 2:20). The death of Christ frees believers from the power of sin and enables them to live a new life in Him. “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come” (2 Corinthians 5:17).
We are not only delivered from the wages of sin, but from the dominion of sin. Christians are united to Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection. Because of what Jesus Christ has done for us, may we no longer live for ourselves but rather for the One who handed Himself over to death on our behalf. We should live in obedience to Him, seeking to honor and glorify Him in all that we do.
May we live for the One who died for us. May we live for the One who rose for us. May we live for the One who ever makes intercession for us.
All roads do not lead to heaven.
Come to Christ.
The death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ are the core of the Christian faith. To become a Christian, one must turn from their sin and place their faith and trust solely in Jesus Christ and His atoning work on the cross.
But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim); because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in Him will not be put to shame.” For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on Him. For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” - Romans 10:8-13.