He is risen indeed

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“We are adopted into God’s family through the resurrection of Christ from the dead in which he paid all our obligations to sin, the law, and the devil, in whose family we once lived. Our old status lies in his tomb. A new status is ours through his resurrection.” ~  Sinclair B. Ferguson

May God bless you with the truth of Jesus Christ’s resurrection this day and the promise that He will come again.

©2019 mamasemptynest.wordpress.com

 

 

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Do this in remembrance

blogIMG_0492It’s Maundy Thursday – a day of remembrance for those of us who are Christians.

Good Friday is but a day away.  And then we wait for the day spectacular.  The day of rejoicing.  Resurrection Day!  Easter Sunday – the day Jesus proved He is the way to victory over death.

But as we wait, we commemorate.  Tonight at church, we will celebrate the Lord’s Supper.   As believers in Christ, we will gather together in our country church.  We will read Scripture and ponder those last days Jesus lived on earth in human form.

We will follow in His footsteps.  We will eat a meal together – we call it a Love Feast – just as He did with His disciples before He was arrested, tried, convicted, beaten, and crucified on a cross.

John 13:1:  “It was just before the Passover Feast. Jesus knew that the time had come for Him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved His own who were in the world, He now showed them the full extent of His love.”

Today we will partake in Communion.  We will break specially prepared bread, handmade by our church deacons using a long-used recipe.  We will give thanks for it before we eat, just as our Savior did before he spoke these words recorded in Luke 22:19: “This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.”

Then we will take the cup, again giving thanks in remembrance of what our Lord did for us on the cross when His blood poured forth to save our souls. In the same way, after the supper He took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you.”  ~ Luke 22:20

But there is something else we will do.  It may seem unusual to some, but it is an integral part of our faith as we remember the significance of this Holy Week, the ultimate sacrifice Jesus made for human kind, and the love that overflowed from Him.

We will fill basins with water, gather towels, and kneel in front of other fellow believers in Christ and wash their feet.

“Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under His power, and that He had come from God and was returning to God; so He got up from the meal, took off His outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist.  After that, He poured water into a basin and began to wash His disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around Him.” ~ John 13:3-5

In Jesus’ day, prior to a communal meal, it was common to have your dirty, dusty feet washed before reclining at a low table to eat.  This job was relegated to a lowly servant. Jesus demonstrated the ultimate in love, humility, and servanthood by performing this act for His disciples.

And then He told them and us, “Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.  I tell you the truth, no servant is greater than his master, not is a messenger greater than the one who sent him.  Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.” ~ John 13:14-17

So why do we do wash the feet of another?  Not only do we do so to follow Jesus’ example, but also because even though as believers we have been washed clean of our sins when we come to Christ, we need cleansing from living in a sin-stained world.

Sanctification (cleansing) is performed by the power of the Holy Spirit through the “washing with water by the Word” (Ephesians 5:26).   As followers of Jesus, we desire to emulate Him, serve others with humility in our hearts and minds, and build one another up in love.

It is then that we will be equipped for every good work.  (2 Timothy 3:16-17).

On this best day of the year, I can’t think of a better way to spend it than serving my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ by following the footsteps of Jesus.

©2013 mamasemptynest.wordpress.com

Spectacular Sunday: He is risen!

I captured this photo a couple of years ago at the Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens in Pittsburgh one day when my husband and I visited there in need of a winter’s day respite.

Something about this sight intrigued me enough to warrant taking a picture.   In comparison to some of the other photos I snapped of exquisite plants and flowers that day, this one doesn’t seem that extraordinary.

But yet, each time I view these snapshots, I am drawn to this picture over and over again.   Finally, this week as I prayerfully considered Holy Week and what it means to believers in Jesus Christ like me, I realized why this photo attracts me with such intensity.

It reminds me of the picture in my mind of how I think the tomb appeared on that Resurrection morning.  The stone was gone.  The tomb was open.  And it was empty.  Our Savior defeated death and He arose!

 “On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb.  They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus.  While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them.  In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, Why do you look for the living among the dead?  He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee:  ‘The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’  Then they remembered his words.” ~ Luke 24: 1-8

The tomb is empty.  My Savior paid the ultimate price for my sin and the sins of this world.   He arose from the grave victorious!  And so shall we.  Hallelujah!  He is risen, indeed!!

Copyright ©2012 mamasemptynest.wordpress.com