Living Easter (Romans 5:6-11)

[From the Easter prayer breakfast at the White House]
“We live our faith when we nurture the hope and possibilities that have always defined us as a country,” Biden said. “We live Easter — and to live Easter is to live with the constant notion that we can always do better.”

NO, NO, NO!!!

That is not living Easter; not even close.

This is living Easter:
For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation. [Romans 5:6-11]

The hope of Easter is not about the notion of us doing better (don’t get me though, we should want to do better all the time), but rather living with the joy that we have been reconciled to God through faith in Jesus. Jesus did better and therefore we should rejoice and celebrate that. And because Jesus did better I strive to be more like him; striving to be more Holy. But the fact of the matter is I know I will fall short. I will takes steps forward but then take steps back. Living Easter is about God and the promise of the empty tomb.

Living our faith?

“We live our faith when we nurture the hope and possibilities that have always defined us as a country,”

What a vague statement. Living our faith is following Jesus and obeying him. If that is what Biden means then great but I have my doubts whether that is what he is getting at. Call it what it is. Living our faith, Easter faith, is living in joy that despite this messed up and fallen world (which will pass away), though faith in the crucified and risen Jesus, we will not pass away. Living our faith is about glorifying God.

That is Easter faith
That is Easter hope
That is Easter joy

If it is about you getting better in this life then you will be sorely disappointed. Keep your eyes fixed on Jesus and on his perfect obedience that lead him to the cross because we are not better.

Praise be to God that we can have this TRUE Easter faith and hope.

Holy God, thank You that Jesus came to save an imperfect and disobedient people. Help us become more like Your son that we may glorify You. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.

The Pastor -|—

The Appeal (Psalm 51:1-12)

I appeal to Your mercy, oh God, through Jesus Christ…

[1] Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions.

I am a sinner, oh God, I am a sinner but I appeal to your mercy through Jesus Christ: Forgive me.

[2] Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin! [3] For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me. [4] Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight, so that you may be justified in your words and blameless in your judgment.

I deserve the full force of your wrath for I have sinned against Your holy law and commands but I appeal to Your mercy through Jesus Christ: Wash me clean.

[5] Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.

I am a sinner through and through, even from my birth.

[6] Behold, you delight in truth in the inward being, and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart.

Through You and You alone can I know the way of true Life. Teach me, oh God, that I may know true wisdom. Teach me that I may stay on the narrow path and not stray from You.

[7] Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. [8] Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones that you have broken rejoice.

Restore me, cleanse me, wipe my slate clean. Oh God, grant me a second chance.

[9] Hide your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities.

I appeal to Your mercy through Jesus Christ: Forgive me.

[10] Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. [11] Cast me not away from your presence, and take not your Holy Spirit from me. [12] Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit.

Place a new heart in me, oh Sovereign God as I appeal to Your mercy through Jesus Christ: Forgive me and grant me a joyful heart once again.

This is my confession; this is my appeal; this is my plea to you, oh God. I echo these words from the psalmist and seek to be placed back into a right relationship with you. So I lay it before you and wait…

[10] For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. [11] More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation. (Romans 5:10-11 ESV)

Through faith in Jesus Christ I am forgiven?


The Pastor -|—

Morning devotions (a little late) ~ Awesome grace

[It’s Friday and therefore my day gets thrown off a little bit (in a good way). Being this is my day off, our family sleeps in and takes our time getting ready in the morning. But now the kids are sleeping and I get some quite time. Praise be to God.]

Now the law came in to increase the trespass, but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. [Romans 5:20-21]

Let’s take a moment, shall we, to ponder the Law. More specifically, let’s examine the 10 Commandments.

The Commandments state that:
~ We shall put nothing before God or fear anything/anyone more than God.
~ We are to refrain from misusing God’s name but rather use it in praise, worship and thanksgiving.
~ We are to remember the Sabbath Day and keep it holy; separate/different than other days.
~ We are to honor our father and mother; for they have been called by God for a holy task.
~ We are not to kill in any way, shape or form.
~ We are to hold and speak of sex and marriage in all purity and honor; and husbands and wives are to remain faithful to each other and to God.
~ We are to refrain from stealing in any way and help our neighbor defend what is his.
~ We are to speak of people in the best possible way.
~ We are not to covet what God has blessed others with.

This is a tall order to say the least. And if you are honest with yourself, you have to admit that you are guilty of violating every single Commandment. I could go into detail how but that would have to be a series of other blog posts. The short of it is that we are sinful and disobey God every single day; single hour; every single second. According to Romans 3, all have sinned and have fallen short of the glory of God.

And for me (and hopefully for you) the more I meditate on the Law and my shortcomings, the more amazing God’s grace in Jesus Christ is. I mean, we sin; all the time; over and over; repeating the same sins; and God still forgives. We turn our backs on God’s holy Law and God still forgives. We worship other gods and God still forgives.

The Good News is that when we run to him in faith in what Jesus did on the cross, then forgiveness is ours; every – single – time.


That should blow you away.
That should humble you.
That should drop you to your knees in worship.
That should lead you to thank God every single day.

God’s grace through faith in Jesus Christ is incredible, especially when we think that without Jesus, we would be expected to follow the Law without fail in order to earn salvation. But instead Jesus took our sins to the cross and crucified them that we may have the hope of the resurrection to eternal life.

So ponder the Law. Think about your sinfulness. Confess your sins and know the amazing grace of God; giving thanks and praise to him always and forever.

May this awesome news of grace and forgiveness drive you to your need for a Savior and may you know a peace that surpasses all understanding.

Have a blessed day living in the glow of God’s glory. In Jesus name, Amen.

The Pastor -|—