Monday, March 17, 2008

Rethink Jesus: Part 5

In part five of the “Rethink Jesus” series, Chad talked about Jesus’ last moments on the cross; and, specifically, the pivotal moment that changed the world!

Chad described “the moment of triumph.” Of course, at the time, most didn’t even know that that was what it was. For most onlookers, their hope died along with Jesus. They didn’t realize that Jesus’ death was the very fulfillment of that hope that they had. When Jesus said that it was “finished,” that was the culmination to God’s plan. The ultimate sacrificial lamb had died for the sins of the world. The old covenant had been replaced by a new and better one. And, in Matthew 27:51, we see the grandeur of what it all means: “And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;”

In order to understand the magnitude of what happened, I suggest that you listen to Chad describe it by listening to the sermon on our church’s website when it is made available. He beautifully described the temple, the holy of holies, and the curtain that separated God from man. One day a year, on the day of atonement, the high priest would go through the process of atoning for the sin of the people. Chad described the process about having the smokescreen so the priest wouldn’t see the ark of the covenant behind the curtain and about having the blood for the covering for the sin. He said that “one keeps you alive and the other makes you alive.”

So, only one day a year did only ONE PERSON have access to God. But, when Jesus accomplished the Father’s will, everything changed!! That veil was torn!! The way was made!! Through the blood of Christ, EVERYONE has access to God!! How amazing!! How beautiful!! HOW ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL!! WHAT A GIFT!!!

Jesus made the way for us all to come to Him; to be close to Him. Do you understand what you’ve been given? Do you grasp what it means to have that veil torn in half? Can you fully take in what his outstretched arms on the cross means? Do you know the magnitude of power within even one drop of the blood of Christ? Those open arms; the blood that ran down; the torn veil; it all says “I love you. I accept you.” Do you know that? The holy of holies is now wide open!! YOU have access to God! YOU can meet with Him!! YOU can be close to Him!! YOU can enter in by the blood of Christ!! His blood; that cleansing blood of PURE LOVE that covers your sin and washes you clean makes you acceptable before God!!

Chad brought up the fact that many know and believe in Jesus as their Lord and Savior. But, they are still standing outside the curtain. Or, in another sermon I once heard, “the stitches of religion” try to sew the curtain back up. What’s keeping you from walking into the holy of holies? Chad says once you accept the fact that you’re accepted, you are able to move forward towards going in and getting close.

So, take a moment and think about it. Imagine Jesus on the cross; arms open wide and the blood flowing down. Imagine that His blood is covering every sin you have laid before His feet. Watch as the blood covers the blackness of it and then purifies it white as snow. Watch Him as He looks at you with his hands nailed to the cross and says, “I love you this much.” Take in the fact that you are accepted. Watch the curtain between you and Jesus be torn in half! Walk through the tear and into the presence of God!! Meet Jesus and sit as His feet!! Give Him your thanks and praise and draw near to Him!! Rejoice that you are a child of God and that you are loved and accepted!! It’s all for you!!

Ponder it all. Let it sink in. Then, read this beautiful love letter from God to you - his child!! (There is also video and audio on the site as well!) I got this letter from the prayer room at church last night (oh my goodness, the prayer room…!! What an experience!!! If you live around here, you just GOT TO GO TO THE PRAYER ROOM!!). You will LOVE this letter!! In the intro, it says: “The words you are about to experience are true. They will change your life if you let them. For they come from the heart of God. He loves you. And He is the Father you have been looking for all your life. This is His love letter to you…“

May you all be blessed!!! I pray that your hearts are as touched as mine was to hear this message today!!

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