In the year of our Lord 2021, many are hoping to return to any semblance of normalcy. They are looking for a restart or a new beginning. Many dark events and things that may even bring fear have happened over the last 12 months. When thinking of this wonderful holiday of Easter, we can consider even the time of the year and seasonal change. It is after the cold and darkness of winter, and flowers, trees, and grass sprout into new life, beauty and new energy. The sun shines more and birds’ songs are seemingly more sweet.
Easter, similarly, is all about new beginnings, commemorating the time when Jesus Christ, who is God, came down to Earth and lived a sinless life. He was with us. The apostle John mentions “our hands have handled, of the Word of Life.” He felt sorrow and pain, and then died a horrible death. Many thought this glorious story had ended.
Christ told His followers repeatedly, “the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected by the elders, and of the chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again” (Mark 8:31). The prophets had foretold this and Jesus told them too. (“Come, and let us return unto the Lord: for he hath torn, and he will heal us; he hath smitten, and he will bind us up. After two days will he revive us; He will rise up on the third day, and we shall live in his sight” — Hosea 6:1-2).
Many times we doubt that things will ever get better and get focused on what is right in front of us and forget the good that has happened to us and the hope we have to look forward to. The apostle Paul wrote, “The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death” (1 Corinthians 15:26). No one likes a bad or sad ending, and that is what seemed to have happened. The apostle Peter denied Jesus, and he and his brothers went back to fishing; Judas had killed himself after betraying him for money; the women who followed him were sad and down-hearted. All hope had seemed lost. Maybe the Romans and the angry Pharisees had killed him and what Christ had said was not true.
The Resurrection, or Easter, is not just a holiday, but it was a history-altering event. Jesus, as some theologians and historians have said, is the man “who split time”. This was a tremendous event that altered much of history as we know it. This event brought hope and new life. “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly” (John 10:10). We don’t have to fear, we can have new life. We must see Christ for who He is, the Savior, who calls all people to repent of sin and believe in his name.
Yerkes is the assistant pastor at Bible Baptist Church in Elmont.