Sunday, March 25, 2018

The Cosmic Import of Easter

March 25 (John 17:5)

And now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world existed.  (ESV)

Today is Palm Sunday.  Later this week Christians will celebrate the other holy days of Easter Week with Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Holy Saturday, and Easter Sunday itself.  Yet celebrating days associated with a certain person can become routine.  We have days to honor Presidents and days to honor great public servants like Martin Luther King, Jr.  We honor mothers, fathers, and grandparents.  Then there are the wacky celebrations like National Hot Dog Day, which this year is July 18th, and National Sock Day on December 4th.  And let’s face it.  The year in, year out celebrations around Easter can numb us with their regularity to what is really going on.

The holy days of Easter do not mark important moments in a man’s life.  They acknowledge unparalleled moments in the history of human beings when God intervened and walked among us.  Consider the verse above, which comes from the last meal that Jesus shared with His disciples.  Scripture says that God knew us before we were born (see Jeremiah 1:5), but neither you nor I existed before the world began, and we certainly did not share in the Father’s glory.  The words Jesus uses here speak clearly to His divine nature.

Easter is about the awe-inspiring, indescribable work of God, Who is transcendent past all our understanding, yet became one of us that we might know Him fully.  These are days of truly cosmic import, for the Greek word used for “world” in this verse is kosmos, which indicates all of the created order, the entire universe.  There have been many good people who have done wonderful things, and we put their names on buildings and dedicate days to their remembrance.  The days of Easter are about so much more than that.  We set them aside to enter once again into the mysterious interaction of the divine and the human, the heavenly and the earthly, when God Himself was man and changed our experience of reality forever.

O Lord, as the poet John Donne once wrote, You were immensity cloistered in Your mother’s womb, You Who created Your mother and then were born through her.  The very thought of You expands my heart and soul and mind past all the feelings and wisdom and knowledge of this world.  May Your praise be ever on my lips and Your worship the very fabric of my life, both in these days of the Easter season and in all the days of my life.  In the name of King Jesus, my risen Savior, amen.

Copyright © 2018 by Steven R. Perkins

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