Pastoral Reflection for 4.5.15

Happy Easter!

I remember City on a Hill's first Easter gathering. It was a few years ago and we had not yet launched as a church. We were meeting on Sunday nights in a synagogue in Coolidge Corner. It was a sweet time of worship as a few dozen people gathered to proclaim the traditional Easter greeting: "Christ is risen!" / "He is risen, Indeed!" This greeting has been said by millions of Christians across hundreds of cultures and languages over the last 2000 years. It literally echoes through the ages and is central to everything Christians believe.

Paul wrote to the Corinthians (around 55AD),

Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain.

For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures. (1 Corinthians 15:1-4)

What he "delivered" to them was the gospel message, the good news that Jesus' Christ's life, death, and resurrection have paved the way for humanity to be reconciled to God. The resurrection is the piece that means the life/death of Christ is not merely an example or wise teaching, it is truly the path to eternal life. 

As we gather to worship Jesus today, we bring a lot of different challenges, struggles, sins, and hurt. The risen Lord, Jesus Christ, offers real hope. How do we know? He stands as victor over the great enemies we all face of Satan, sin, and death. He died so that we might live. The holy became unclean so that the unclean may be made holy. The beautiful was stained with sin so that the stained with sin might be made beautiful.

If you are a Christian, let us celebrate the risen Christ together! Let your mind and heart be moved by the King who in his great love has come for you to redeem you. Let your mouth sing his praise. Let your hands clap with praise for his name. Let your soul rejoice in the God of your salvation today!

If you are not a Christian, what is keeping you from trusting in Christ today? We would be honored to pray with you about this important step. If you feel like you need to know more about Jesus or have you questions answered, would you consider checking out our Alpha Course that kicks off tonight? All the information is in the announcements section of this worship guide. 

With much love on this Easter Sunday,

Pastor Bland