By William Lukman, Indonesia
When you watch a movie, do you pay particular attention to the ending? Well, I do. When I watch movies that do not have a good ending, I often feel frustrated and wonder why I bothered spending the past one-and-a-half hours or so watching that movie!
What about the life of Jesus? Did you pay particular attention to the ending of His life on earth?
Let’s start from the beginning. Jesus was born of a virgin mother Mary, who was betrothed to a man called Joseph, of the house and lineage of David (Luke 2:4). From birth, he was heralded as the Messiah.
“For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.” (Luke 2:11)
“She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:21)
The gospel of John records some of His amazing deeds:
• He turned water into wine (John 2);
• He healed many who were sick (John 4-5, 9);
• He fed the 5000 (John 6);
• He walked on water (John 6);
• He raised Lazarus from the dead (John 11).
The impressive records showed that Jesus is God and had a purpose to fulfill on this Earth. Two Gospels captured beautifully Jesus’ very own words about His mission:
“For the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Matthew 21:28, also in Mark 10:45)
On that first Good Friday, Jesus performed the saving act for humanity. He was betrayed, arrested, struck, flogged, mocked, crowned with thorns, spat on, stripped, nailed, pierced, and crucified. And worst of all, it appeared that He was crushed and forsaken by His Father (Matthew 27:46). But that’s not the end of the story. Three days later, Jesus rose triumphant from the grave (Matthew 28:1-7)! He conquered sin and death.
With this ending in mind, here are some tips on how we can approach Easter with ready hearts:
1. Immerse ourselves in the details of the Passion narrative
A detailed understanding of the story will allow us to better appreciate the depth and the gravity of the sacrifice which Jesus made for us.
2. Remember that we are an important part of the narrative
We are not just an audience. We are the reason why Jesus went to the cross. He died to personally save us from our sins.
3. Recommit our lives to Jesus
If we have slipped away from our faith, then use this time to recommit our lives to Jesus. Or if we are reminded of God’s love this Easter, then use this time to reaffirm our commitment to Jesus.