Archive for the 'Miracles of Jesus' Category
Do you need some words of encouragement as the holiday of Easter approaches? First, please let me pose to you a question? Is Easter-Resurrection Sunday still relevant to us in this postmodern world?
To help us answer that, let’s start by looking at who God is and what He’s like.
I remember when my children were still very young, I was in church choir rehearsal before our Easter-morning worship service. I had this very exciting word from God that I had just received a day or two before! Our choir director asked the group if anyone had a word from the Lord that they would like to share, something he rarely asked.
I know that the Bible is complete, and we can’t add to it, but God still speaks to us by His Holy Spirit as He applies His written word to our hearts. Ephesians 6:17 talks about the Sword of the Spirit, which is the “rhema,” or the spoken word of God. (Please see my post about that very topic: “Full Armor of God: Sword of Spirit.”)
I knew that I had to share from my heart what God had given me. That burning in my heart was like God saying, “You go, girl!” So I shared about 2 Peter 3:8. Please stick with me as I quote the passage, and then I’ll tell you the treasure that God spoke to my heart! Here’s the verse along with verse nine, a very inspirational quote coming from the heart of God!
8 “But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. 9 The Lord is not slow in keeping His promise, as some understand slowness. Instead He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance (2 Peter 3:8,9 NIV).”
The Message, a paraphrased Bible by Eugene H. Peterson says it this way: 8 “Don’t overlook the obvious here, friends. With God, one day is as good as a thousand years, a thousand years as a day. God isn’t late with his promise as some measure lateness. He is restraining himself on account of you, holding back the End because he doesn’t want anyone lost. He’s giving everyone space and time to change.”
I see now that this passage is talking about waiting for the return of the Lord and possibly the rapture, but God used verse 8 that day to speak to me about His resurrection. Here’s the “Easter blessing” that God gave me and that I shared with the choir! We know that Jesus’ resurrection happened about 2000 years ago, and we might feel like it was so long ago that we can’t feel its significance as much for us today. God reminded me that since a thousand years is like one day to Him, those 2000 years that have passed since His death, burial and resurrection are actually like two or three days ago to Him. This makes His death, burial, and resurrection very relevant to Jesus. These are His crowning accomplishments, Jesus’ greatest miracles!
So we can celebrate this Easter, knowing that it’s very relevant and can be worth everything to us! Let’s live as if Jesus had just died on the cross for us, was buried, and rose again on this Easter weekend! That’s the attitude we should always have as we walk by faith in these end times. How’s that for relevance? In other words, God is timeless. What He does, especially for us, is always contemporary, current, and up-to-the-moment! Resurrection Sunday is of utmost relevance. He will bring everything into right focus, if we are seeking Him! Amen and amen!
Please leave a comment if this has helped you.
Matthew 14: 15-21, NASB says:
15” When it was evening, the disciples came to Him and said, ‘The place is desolate and the hour is already late; so send the crowds away, that they may go into the villages and buy food for themselves.’
16 But Jesus said to them, “They do not need to go away; you give them something to eat!’
17 They said to Him, ‘We have here only five loaves and two fish.’
18 And He said, Bring them here to Me.
19 And ordering the people to sit down on the grass, He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up toward heaven, He blessed the food, and breaking the loaves He gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds,
20 and they all ate and were satisfied. They picked up what was left over of the broken pieces, twelve full baskets.
21 And there were about five thousand men who ate, besides women and children.”
So one day after Jesus had healed the sick on into the evening, His disciples wanted Him to send the crowds away so they could get their own food. Jesus had another idea; they could feed them. But how could they feed so many? After taking the bread and fish, Jesus looked into heaven and blessed the food and broke the loaves.
This bread broken for the multitudes is a picture of Jesus being broken on the cross. He is the Bread of Life. (John 6:35 – Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst.) He was broken for us, and like bread, He gives life to those who “eat of Him”, or those who take Him in and trust in Him as Savior and Lord. His life given for us is Eternal Life.
This picture of Jesus as the Bread of Life is the all-pervasive theme here, but I am led to believe that there is a smaller variation on the theme going on here also. Jesus desires for each of us Christians to be broken. (John15:13 – “Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.”) This means giving up our old selfish ways, so that people in need of Jesus would be fed the Bread of Life. In
1 John 3:16-18, we read:
16 “We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.
17 But whoever has the world’s goods, and beholds his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him?
18 Little Children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth.”
It is no accident that John 3:16 tells about Jesus being given for us so that we can have everlasting life, and then 1 John 3:16 tells about how we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.
Jesus broke and multiplied the bread and fish (Mark 6:41), and the disciples gave it to the people. So, Christ was broken for us; but we must also give our lives for others. When we do, God will return to us what was broken, because in breaking us, we are blessed (Matthew 14:19 - “He blessed the food, and breaking the loaves…”)
After the disciples distributed the broken food, 12 baskets of leftover pieces remained. There were 12 disciples, so the return was 12 full baskets. Allow yourself to be broken to “feed” others and Christ will bless you equally and beyond, or in “good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, they will pour into your lap” (Luke 6:38) what you have given…and Halleluiah, multitudes will be fed and satisfied in Jesus!
This is God’s plan for each of Christ’s followers. Do you dare try it?