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Easter Devotional

Easter Devotional 2022

The Story of Easter: A New Beginning

Without a doubt, Easter is the most important Christian holiday. Why? What does the resurrection of Christ mean? The resurrection of Christ takes place at the end of the four gospels. But it is the beginning of a new story. The story of God’s new creation begins with the resurrection of Christ. When we believe in Christ, we participate in this story. The power of the resurrection floods our hearts and teaches us two important lessons.

First, Christ’s resurrection teaches us to hope. As wars and violence surround us, it is easy to despair; it is easy to think that there is no hope for a world so often marred by cruelty and brutality. Christ’s resurrection, however, teaches us to hope that a far greater power reigns in this world.  Even as perpetrators of evil lust after control, the resurrection of Christ assures us that the power of love will ultimately overcome the love of power.

Second, Christ’s resurrection teaches us to love. God’s power displayed in Christ’s resurrection can transform our hearts so that we learn to live according to Christ’s image and example. By His power, we begin to love our neighbour as ourselves. By His power, we reject the hatred that so saturates this world. By His power, we learn to listen to others humbly. By His power, we deny our narcissistic impulses to live only for ourselves.

God’s new creation begins in our hearts, but it does not end there. When Christ returns, we will be resurrected from the dead. We will live with our Saviour in a beautifully transformed world. The Apostle John describes this new world: “God will wipe away every tear from our eyes, and death will be no more, neither will there be mourning nor crying nor pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” That is why the words “Christ is Risen!” are so important. The resurrection of Christ confirms the resurrection of all who believe in Him. As we celebrate the resurrection of Christ this Easter, let us thank God for the privilege we have of participating in the story of new creation!

Rev. Dr. Zachary Kail

Member of the American Academy Board of Directors

Easter Devotional 2023

Why is Good Friday Good?
In a few days, we will celebrate Good Friday, the day on which Christ died. Why is it called ‘Good Friday’? After all, a terrible and unjust act happened on Good Friday. In the Gospel of St Matthew, 27:51, we learn that when Christ died, “the veil of the temple was torn in two.” The meaning of this torn veil can teach us why Good Friday is good.
In the Old Testament, one of the most important functions of the veil in the Temple was to block access to God’s presence. Only the high priest, and only once a year, could enter the Holy of Holies. On the Day of Atonement, the high priest passed into the Holy of Holies through the veil with fear and dread. This fear and dread was understandable. God is holy and we are sinners.. Access to God was denied because of the sins of the people. But now, the veil, which forbade access to God, was torn. All of us are allowed to enter the presence of God!
What happened? Did God’s character suddenly change? Has God grown soft in his old age? No! Christ died and our sins died with him. Christ died so that our sins can be forgiven. He was raised so that we can walk in newness of life. His death cancels the penalty of sin; his life nullifies the power of sin. Now, we who believe in Christ can enter the Holy of Holies freely and without fear because our sins are forgiven. We have access to God through Christ.
As we celebrate Good Friday, let us mourn for the state of the world. Let us look upon the evil and suffering of this world and weep. Our world is full of pain and difficulties. But into this world of suffering entered our Lord Christ. He took upon himself the pain and evil of this world and through his sacrifice, he offers us forgiveness and access into His presence. Therefore, let us also celebrate. Because of Christ’s sacrifice, God is with us forever. That’s why Good Friday is so good!

Rev. Dr. Zachary Kail
Member of the American Academy Board of Directors

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