For Christians all over the world, Easter is the most important celebration of the year. While Christmas gets more attention, it is the resurrection of Jesus Christ that is the central theme of Christianity – not Jesus the babe in a manger, Jesus the risen LORD. It is His victory over sin and death that makes Christianity uniquely different than all other religions. What if this year, you committed to a daily time of reflection, prayer and worship as you approach Easter?
A study of Jesus’ final week on this earth allows us as believers to see Jesus for who He truly was – fully God and fully man! This week, Sunday to Sunday, is filled with a multitude of human emotions and experiences along with the awe-inspiring power of God in all His essence. In the religious world, this week is referred to as the Passion week (which means “to endure” or “to suffer”) or the Holy Week. For many of the Christian faith, it is a time of great reverence and celebration. Some traditional denominations provide services each day that have been created to coincide with the gospels’ teachings.
For many contemporary Christians, the busyness of life has reduced this week to just attending an Easter service along with fun, family activities like egg hunts, reunions, etc… .Now, I honestly have no problem with these types of celebrations. I believe God wants us to celebrate family and enjoy the beauty and richness of deep relationships built around “fun” events, but I think we need to balance those with an attitude of reverence and devotion to the great significance of this week.
Ultimately, I don’t think the problem is just busyness; I think it is a lack of understanding for many. While many of us look forward to celebrating the resurrection of Jesus on Sunday, a large portion of evangelical Christians simply don’t recognize the significance of the days leading up to Easter. Members of the more liturgical style churches may attend the services offered each day of Passion week, but they may also miss the full meaning of these days.
So, what is the answer to this lack of understanding? As always, the Word of God is the answer! An intentional study of the gospel accounts of Jesus’ final week is all you need to gain perspective and experience the Passion week like you never have before.
Each day this week, I will post a new devotional reading that will, hopefully, help you see the week leading up to Easter like you never have before. . As we take a look at Jesus’ activities during the days leading up to the crucifixion and resurrection, my prayer is that you experience this day that changed everything in a new and a fresh way, and that this year, Jesus’ love for you will literally transform your world.
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