By A.B. Vines
It’s hard to believe it’s already Good Friday. The speed at which this year is flying by is mind-blowing, yet here we are, on the brink of celebrating the greatest day in history–Resurrection Sunday.
Before we look to what happened nearly 2000 years ago, let’s go even further back to the beginning of the universe.
In the beginning…God
When God created the world, He made sure everything was perfect. Genesis 1:1 says, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness covered the surface of the watery depths, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface of the waters.”
Then God said, “Let there be light,” and from that moment on, the work of God has continued to create and form everything we’re able to see today.
As I write this, I’m on a family vacation enjoying God’s good creation. In fact, I’m sitting on a boat reflecting on the creative handiwork of God.
This boat is on water filled with all kinds of fish that came from the Lord’s imagination. I’m surrounded by the mountains and valleys of the beautifully landscaped country I’m visiting.
The Plan of the Father
I can’t help but think about how amazing the creative work of our Lord is. However, I also know the rest of what happened in Genesis with the fall of man. I also know about the plan God had to make things right again.
That plan involved Jesus Christ’s virgin birth, perfect life, sacrificial death, victorious resurrection, and ascension into heaven. It’s the story of the amazing love of a Father who sent His only Son to complete the ultimate sacrifice.
God’s ultimate agape love is seen in John 3:16, which says, “For God loved the world in this way: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.”
The Story of our Savior
Our Lord had a special birth—a virgin birth—being conceived by the Holy Spirit in Mary’s womb.
There was also a man with character and humility whose name was Joseph. After finding out what had happened, Joseph decided to end their engagement quietly to keep from embarrassing Mary.
However, the Lord sent an angel to tell him he needed to marry her. And so, Joseph submitted and helped raise this amazing child, Jesus Christ.
How do we know He was so amazing? Well, by the age of 12, He already had the teachers of the law scratching their heads because of all the wisdom He was teaching them.
The young Jesus would grow to be a man walking the streets of Jerusalem, preaching and teaching the amazing Word of God.
The Savior Who Died In Our Place…And Rose Again
All along the way, Jesus never sinned. Yet, He was sent to the cross to die a brutal death in our place. He was then placed in a donated tomb, but that’s not the end of the story
Three days later, Christ rose from the dead to complete the perfect, finished work of redemption.
Mankind has discovered many things in the process of subduing the earth. We’ve discovered diamonds, gold and silver, and electricity. We’ve even found a way to put a man on the moon.
But do you know what we haven’t discovered? We haven’t discovered the bones of Jesus.
We know precisely where Buddha’s bones lie and where Mohammad is buried. We know exactly where most religious figures in history are buried.
But we haven’t found the bones of Jesus. Why? Because you can’t find the bones of a living man.
He’s alive! And He’s coming again.
Don’t Forget This
The Pharisees tried to pay off the guards to lie about the body of Jesus in the Gospel of Mark, but it didn’t change the facts. Jesus rose.
Since He lives, we can overcome our past. Since He lives, we can face our present struggles. Because He lives, we can look forward to our future.
So as you celebrate this week, remember this: you can’t find the bones because He’s alive.
Dr. A.B. Vines
A.B. has been the pastor of New Seasons Church in San Diego for the past 13 years and was elected first vice president of the Southern Baptist Convention at the 2018 Annual Meeting. Vines currently serves as president of the California Southern Baptist Convention (CSBC) and is a trustee at the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission. He is husband to Karen, the father of four, and “PaPa” to nine.