Sunday, 8 April 2012
Jesus' Resurrection- the foundation of the Christian faith!
It proved that Jesus was more than just a prophet, and it showed us that there can be life after death!
Christians argue about exactly what form this 'life after death' might take, but what is certain is that death is not the end. This should be hugely conforting to those people who feel let down or are scorned by the earthly world. But it should also be a warning to us not to think of what we can get here and now as the be-all and end-all - there is much more to come!
We've already seen that Easter stands for Equality, Agape, Saviour and Transcendent.
Today, as we celebrate Easter Day, I'm gong to talk about the second E and the letter R.
E is for Everyone
The Old Testament follows the story of the Jewish nation and their journey to the promised land. With the coming of Jesus this promised land was opened up to us all. Jesus associated with those who, at the time, were considered sinners- tax-collectors, those living with others whilst unmarried, the disabled, and non-Jews. On the cross he was even willing to talk to criminals. There was no group that he was unwilling to communicate with.
Jesus' early followers included women, men, Greeks, Romans, fishermen, craftsmen, worked people, the educated, former Jews, and many more. Today, thanks to the message of his resurrection, Christians are spread all around the world. They come from many walks of life, many educational and social backgrounds, and many different societies. The message that Jesus, and God, are for everyone is one that we, as Christians, should shout from the rooftops. The question only remains, why don't we?
Saturday, 7 April 2012
- beyond or above the range of normal or physical human experience: the search for a transcendent level of knowledge
- surpassing the ordinary; exceptional: her transcendent beauty
- (of God) existing apart from and not subject to the limitations of the material universe. Often contrasted with immanent.
- (in scholastic philosophy) higher than or not included in any of Aristotle’s ten categories
- (in Kantian philosophy) not realizable in experience.
Jesus rose from the dead on Easter moring! Now that's definatlly something beyond the range of norma human experience. And yet, its the foundation stone of the Christian faith. And it shows us that God is transcendent. We cannot expect to understand what his purpose is for us. For him nothing is impossible. And so, through faith in him, all things are possible. The challenge is to be ableto truly believe this.
Friday, 6 April 2012
What's been going on?Today is Good Friday, and each year the Christians in Abingdon gettogether to celebrate the most important event in history: the deathh of Jesus Christ.
What's so good about it?Why is someone's death called good? Because we believe Jesus died for a reason: because he loved you and wanted to make a way for you to come into relationship with Him! It might be Friday....
..... but Sunday's coming!Two days later, he rose again, proving he had defeated death once and for all- and had made it possible for all of us to be forgiven and live in relationship with God both now and in eternity.
Want to know more?Check out this video:
Why not visit your local church this Easter or soon after?
Contact detailss for Abingdon churches can be found at www.church-in-abingdon.org.uk
Again, I'd like to remind you that this is a post about my own personal view of what Easter means.
a person who saves someone or something from danger or difficulty: politicians of the era usually portray themselves as the nation’s saviours
(the/our Saviour) (in Christianity) God or Jesus Christ as the redeemer of sin and saver of souls.
Origin: Middle English: from Old French sauveour, from ecclesiastical Latin salvator (translating Greek sōtēr), from late Latin salvare 'to save'
Many at the time of Jesys thought that the saviour would save them from the Romans. He would be a military leader. He would overthrow the enslavers of the Jews. As Jesus entered Jerusalem they shouted 'Hosanna (save, we pray). But Jesus arrived on a donkey, an animal of burden, rather than in military glory. And when the authorities attacked him he stood there are took it.
It is easy to see why many at the time (and many now) were confused. Jesus simply didn't live up to their idea of a saviour. But this was because they were looking for a way to be saved from physical rather than spiritual matters.
As the dictionary definition says, Jesus is the saver of souls. Through following him and his teachings we can be saved from sin. No longer will we be slaves to the temptations of life, but instead they will die and allow us to find a new life in the spirit.
Thursday, 5 April 2012
Continuing my letter by letter meaning of Easter posts. These are written straight from my heart and my point of view, its not necessarily official theology!
A is for Agape
What is Agape?
noun[mass noun] TheologyOrigin: early 17th century: from Greek agapē 'brotherly love'
The cruxifiction is the ultimate sign of God's love for us- showing how much he cares for us. Jesus' last words "Father, forgive them" also showed that love, poured out on those who had condemned him.
It is hard to love everyone, especially those who hurt us. And yet it is this kind of love that Jesus calls us to have for all. Jesus told us to 'love our neighbours', illustrating the meaning of neighbour through the story of the Good Samaritan. Our neighbours are all the world, whatever their creed, colour, beliefs etc, etc..... Loving them all may seem an impossibility, but it is something which all Christians must try to do.
Wednesday, 4 April 2012
OK, so here's my (possibly not so) bright idea: For the next 5 days I'll be posting about what Easter means to me, one letter at a time. That means that tomorrow's theme will begin with A, Friday's S, and so on.....
Please remember that these are my thoughts: I am simply a Christian, I have not been theologically trained!
Today I'm tacking 'E'
E is for Equality
Picture Jesus on the cross, two criminals hanging beside him. One wonders why he is there? Surely he doesn't deserve this fate! At that moment Jesus could have turned round and said "You're right- I've done nothing wrong, by human values I don't deserve to be here, but you do!" But that's not what he said, of course its not! Instead he tells him that he will be with him in paradise.
Faith makes all believers equal- no matter what they have done in the past! Like the criminal, our sins are forgiven if we truly repent. Its important to remember this in our daily lives and to be careful not to judge others, it's their hearts that will truly matter in the end!