I hope this morning you can “Stand in triumph, stand in triumph, [and] worship Christ, the Risen King!” Although we have lived in Tennessee for sixteen months now, last year we were visiting family, so this is our first Easter on the mountain. It has been the sweetest celebration of Christ’s victory over death. From Palm Sunday, to Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and a sunrise service at Point Park this morning — every service has been a beautiful time of reflection.
Even weeks ago, a sermon made me think about Christ’s sacrifice in a new way. One of our pastors, Brian Salter, was teaching from Exodus 12, which is The Passover. The Passover, of course, happened on the heels of nine other plagues in Egypt. Everyone had witnessed how God would announce what the plague would be, the plague would occur just as God said, and Pharoah would still deny Moses’ request to “Let my people go.”
The final plague would be the death of all firstborns. I imagine there was little doubt as to whether this plague would actually occur. You can read the Scriptures beginning in Exodus 7 and see what everyone in Egypt would have witnessed through the first nine plagues. Then comes this final plague: the death of the firstborn. To avoid this terrible fate you would need to take a lamb into your home for 4-5 days, and then kill it, drain its blood and use it to mark the frame of your door. Only if the blood was there, would your house be passed over.
Pastor Salter drew our attention to the emotions of waking up that next day. Can you stop for a minute and consider it? Can you imagine waking up that morning and being able to hug your firstborn? You’d be overcome with gratitude. The covering of the blood had saved your beloved child.
I can picture myself sobbing and embracing my sweet Dub, and knowing that he lived only because the sweet perfect lamb had died.
That is not just the story of Passover. It is the truth of Easter.
Worthy is the lamb that was slain for you and for me.
16 “For God so loved the world,[a] that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. 19 And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. 20 For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. 21 But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.”
Hope you have a fabulous day celebrating your Risen King!