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This week as we prepare to celebrate Easter, let's look at Jesus' statements regarding life and death. Jesus was very clear about his mission on earth. "I am come that they (every human being) might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly."
According to popular legend, Ponce de León discovered Florida while searching for the Fountain of Youth. He desired to hold death at bay. To this day, the health and cosmetic industry use every means from creams to cryogenics to cheat death and ensure longevity.

Inner perception tells us we are part of something grander than our physical senses reveal. Death is both hated and feared because it is a cruel terminator of dreams and aspirations. It cuts short human potential and personal gain.

Various religious systems are man's way to answer the question of life and death. Only Jesus Christ can give meaning to life. Only He, by means of his journey into the dark shadows of death and return to life, can allay our fears and clarify our purpose. Only He can give us hope.

This month as we prepare to celebrate Easter, let's look at Jesus' statements regarding life and death.

First, Jesus was very clear about his mission on earth. "I am come that they (every human being) might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly," (John 10:10.) Jesus did not come to establish a religious denomination or political system. He came to impart eternal life to those who would receive the gift.

Jesus said, "For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself," (John 5:26.) The same life Jesus possesses, He offers to us.

It is interesting to note that Jesus referred to people who do not possess eternal life as dead men walking. In John 5:24 He said that those who believe on Him "pass from death to life", implying those without Him are already spiritually dead. Scripture affirms this truth time and again.

Jesus saw life as something more than physical. He referred to life as "eternal" or life unending, such as only God possesses and wills to impart to us.

Last Christmas, my two year old granddaughter approached me with one of her toys. Handing it to me she said, "Batteries, Poppie...batteries." She knew for her toy to be animated, a power source was needed. She recognized that though the toy had outer form and tangibility, it needed an internal life force.

Jesus looked at humanity with much keener perception than any two-year-old and knew humanity's intrinsic problem. No one possessed eternal life and everyone needed an internal "battery change"...so to speak.

From the moment of Adam and Eve's transgression, death held full sway, dashing dreams, truncating physical life and barring access to God's eternal presence.

The good news is that God hates death more than any human does!

Jesus said, "Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him," (John 3:17.) Saved means to escape death's grip.

Sometimes in our quest to parse theological truths to fit personal fancies, Christians lose sight of the big picture. Jesus' primary purpose in coming to earth was to defeat death and to offer the gift of eternal life. Believers will never see eye to eye on every doctrinal point, but we should with great fervor and unity proclaim God's gift to humankind.

Satan, God's archenemy, is the one who hates humanity and wills to destroy every life. In John 10:10 Jesus clarified this issue. "The thief (Satan) comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly."

Let's celebrate God's gift of eternal life and honor Jesus' sacrifice by boldly proclaiming the good news. Invite someone to church this Easter. Hand out gospel tracts. Share your life changing testimony with a co-worker.

A man in our congregation recently called me to share the following exciting testimony!

His daughter had recently accepted a job and was "nudged" to befriend a co-worker. In the natural, she was not inclined to associate with this young woman. However, she obeyed the Spirit's leading.

She soon discovered that her new friend had been listening to Christian CD's and was seeking someone to further instruct her in reconciliation with God. God used my friend's daughter to lead a searching young mother to receive God's gift of eternal life! Soon this new believer and her two children will be attending church where they will grow in their new life!

Eternal life is God's gift to everyone. Let's spread the good news!

Erie Christian Fellowship Church
All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author Biography

James Dumont
Web site: Erie Christian Fellowship Church
 
Pastor Jim Dumont and Pam Dumont are the founding pastors of Erie Christian Fellowship Church in Fairview, PA. In 1981, their ministry literally began in a tent when they obeyed God's call to, "Move to Erie, become established and build a great church."
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