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18
More Than A Fantastic Story
April 18, 2017

Jesus’ dramatic “it is finished” from the cross did not mean that it was over.  Only the His work of sacrifice for the payment of sin for the world was finished.  The best was yet to come.  On the first day of the week his followers became very aware that something new had begun, like the start of a new week (John 20).  Mary Magdalene discovered the empty tomb first then told the others.  Grave robbing had become so prevalent that it had become punishable by death.  But the body was not stolen, or else the expensive burial linens would have been gone.  It would have also been easier to steal a wrapped body than one unwrapped.  When Peter and the beloved disciple came to investigate they saw it was true.  The beloved disciple saw that the linens were there but the body was gone and he believed (John 20:8b).

That has always been the stretch for us who follow.  We will never witness the events like the first believers but we are called to exercise faith.  The gospel of John was written for you and me.

 “Therefore many other signs Jesus also performed in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these have been written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name.”  John 20:30-31

 John’s gospel and the resurrection account is not just a fantastic story.  It was recorded for a purpose; so that we might believe that Jesus is the Christ the son of God.  That was the confession of Thomas, “My Lord and my God!” (John 20:28b) The resurrection of Jesus is what makes the faith of followers unique.  By faith we confess the Name of Jesus.  Paul wrote, “that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.” (Romans 10:9-10).  Lives are changed through faith.  Through faith we receive peace from God, a clear conscience and a changed lifestyle.  It does not matter where you have been, what you have done or who you have done it with.  By faith in Jesus the past is cleared and we find a hope of eternal life through Jesus’ name.  The choice is yours.  What will you choose?

pj

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