Living on Purpose: Christ is risen, and what that means for everyone

Throughout history, no one has made a greater impact than Jesus Christ. So who is this person called Jesus? He was not just a man; he was God. It's widely known Jesus was born of a virgin 2,000 years ago, but he existed long before that. As the Son of God and second person of the Trinity, Jesus is the Alpha and Omega, which means he is from the beginning and has no end. His being infinite is beyond our comprehension and exalts God as the highest authority. Jesus the Christ means he is the anointed one, the promised Messiah. All other gods and idols have been created, but the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob has always been and will always be.

Jesus said in John 8:58, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, before Abraham was, I am" which explains that his physical birth in Bethlehem and his agonizing death on Calvary was a calculated plan to come down from heaven and rescue believers who needed to be saved from their sins. In this Holy Week, we think of Jesus dying on the cross and how after three days he arose triumphant over death and paid the ransom for those who are hopelessly lost. The crucifixion and resurrection prove how much God loves us and wants to save us! Jesus resurrecting from the dead is truly the greatest event in the history of mankind.

Of all philosophies, ideas and imaginations within every civilization, there is only one truth when it comes to the Almighty God of the Bible being the creator of all things and the judge of every person's heart. This is why he is called the King of kings, and Lord of lords. He is omnipotent, which means he is not limited in power or authority. He is omniscient, which reveals he is the only one who has complete knowledge, wisdom, perception, awareness and understanding. He sees everything and knows the hearts of every person who has ever been born. God is also omnipresent, meaning he sees and hears everything with the divine ability to be everywhere at the same time, including knowing the future.

When we realize that no other religion has anything spiritually or historically comparable to the Bible, we wonder how anyone could not want to know God and be born again. It's because every person at one time was spiritually blind and unable to see the spiritual truth. We must hear God's Word, which allows the Holy Spirit to convict our conscience, then God graciously opens our eyes and we are compelled and drawn to repent and worship the Savior. As Romans 10:17 tells us, "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." Romans 1:16 also declares, "For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile."

Further understanding is found in 2 Corinthians 4:4, where it speaks of the lost not being able to comprehend the love, mercy and grace of God. "Satan, the god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God."

Many will ask, "Why did Jesus need to suffer? Could he not just snap his fingers and save everyone?" When Adam and Eve lost their standing with God in the Garden, humans continued to enjoy their free will, and it's this ability to choose that allows us to give our heart and strength completely to him or walk away. We are constantly deciding between good and evil. We are not forced to sin, and neither will God make us love him.

For those of you who do not know Jesus as your Lord, I pray you will ask him to save you today. We realize the Gospel of Christ appears to be relatively simple, as Romans 10:13 proclaims that "Whosoever calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved," but the concept of his grace does not erase human accountability. Neither is it based on human works. What Jesus did is not an automatic ticket to heaven for everyone; it's an opportunity to know our Creator and be in blood covenant with the Lamb that was slain. May we not abuse God's mercy as an excuse for our disobedience because the true definition of covenant requires both parties to honor their vows.

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