Today I saw a bumper sticker that read; Jesus Died For Us.
I was very pleased to see the bumper sticker, as I wholeheartedly believe the statement made on the sticker. Almost as fast as my mind acknowledged that I agree that Jesus did die for us, I had another thought…
I thought, man you hear this a lot, the acknowledgement that Jesus died for mankind, for our sins, because he loved us. All of these things I believe to be absolute truth yet my mind wandered on yet another thought.
My immediate thought was envisioning all the pictures, jewelry, etc that depicts Christ dead on the cross. I thought, yes he did die but he is not dead.
The Enemy would love to twist the fact that Jesus died and is still hanging on a cross or rotted in the grave, that it all ended with Jesus’s death. He would love to use it to convince people that Jesus was like any other man. Maybe even try and convince people that Jesus was just a good guy that took on an awful death in the name of goodness.
I thought it would be just like the Enemy to take anything and everything and twist it, even this very truthful statement on the bumper sticker. Yes Jesus died for the sins of mankind but…death on a cross is not where it ended.
Mark 16: 1-14
When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go to anoint Jesus’ body. Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb 3 and they asked each other, “Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?”
But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away. As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed.
“Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter, ‘He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.’”
Trembling and bewildered, the women went out and fled from the tomb. They said nothing to anyone, because they were afraid.
When Jesus rose early on the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had driven seven demons. She went and told those who had been with him and who were mourning and weeping. When they heard that Jesus was alive and that she had seen him, they did not believe it.
Afterward Jesus appeared in a different form to two of them while they were walking in the country. These returned and reported it to the rest; but they did not believe them either.
Later Jesus appeared to the Eleven as they were eating; he rebuked them for their lack of faith and their stubborn refusal to believe those who had seen him after he had risen.
The life of Jesus did not end in death. Jesus conquered death. Death has no power over him! We cannot let the Enemy let us be satisfied that Jesus died. Jesus is not dead…He is alive!
While with the disciples, Jesus gave his final instructions:
He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.
Then God took Jesus into heaven so he might make intercession for mankind.
After the Lord Jesus had spoken to them, he was taken up into heaven and he sat at the right hand of God
Who is he that condemns? Christ Jesus, who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.
What exactly is intercession?
To intercede is to intervene with a focus of reconciling differences. In other words Jesus is in heaven sitting at the right hand of his Father (God) continually seeking Gods favor for us, just as he did in his final moments on earth.
Two other men, both criminals, were also led out with him to be executed. When they came to the place called the Skull, there they crucified him, along with the criminals—one on his right, the other on his left. Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”
Yes it is absolutely true that Jesus died so that we may be forgiven. God gave his only begotten Son so we could have life eternally. Jesus’s birth, life, and death are critical. My point is that we not allow the Enemy, through worldly religions, viewpoints, and philosophies to fools us into forgetting and/or not acknowledging that Jesus died but is not dead.
Jesus was born to live, die, and rise. We cannot let the world forget about that.
There are many that will acknowledge Jesus as a man in history. Some will say he was a good man of strong morals and ethics. Some will say Jesus died as a mere martyr (a person who sacrifices something of great value and especially life itself for the sake of principle).
Jesus is the way for us to be redeemed of sin so we can spend eternity with God in heaven. We are cleansed by the flowing of his blood.
Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
1 John 1:5-7
This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.
This is a message to Believers and non-believers alike. Even though I have accepted Christ as my Savior and Lord of my life, I am still a sinner. I mess up all the time. When I do, I must seek God’s forgiveness by means of a genuine heart.
As those claiming to believe in and accept Jesus into our lives, there should be evidence of it. Many times the things we say and how we act do not show evidence of our claims. What we say and do is the proof if Jesus is really Lord of our life or not.
By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.
If Jesus were not alive sitting at the right hand of his Father interceding for me, I would be in a world of hurt. As a sinner I am not worthy of God’s glory.
for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. God presented him as a sacrifice of atonement, through faith in his blood.
The Enemy is very crafty. He would love us to look upon Jesus and conclude his existence stopped with his death. If it had, Jesus would be the same as any other person in history that people worship.
Jesus is alive, in heaven, interceding for mankind, and waiting to return so he may gather up The Church (those dead and living that have proclaimed Jesus as Lord of their life, and acknowledged that through faith in Jesus, he is the only way to the Father and heaven).
Please do not think I am saying that having a bumper sticker or saying that Jesus died for our sins is wrong. By all means, that is correct.
My intention with this writing is an encouragement of increased awareness in how the Enemy uses trickery and deception to discredit Jesus in his entirety.
Jesus is alive!!