Why is Easter so important to the Church? Simply put, if Jesus had not risen on the third day, he would have just become another long-forgotten person cruelly executed by the Roman empire. But…he rose from the dead never to die again, and to defeat death so that we can live with him for all eternity. And how can we be so sure? Because of the eye witness accounts of the apostles and hundreds of others who saw the resurrected Jesus. They were so convinced that many went on to martyrs deaths for the sake of Christ – sure in the knowledge that they too would be resurrected with Christ. Christ is risen, he is risen indeed!

Neville Jopson (Elder), Grace Bible Church.

Christ is risen. Alleluia. Praise the Lord.
The highlight of our Christian world is Jesus rising from the tomb. This act of God changes everything. Dejection, betrayal, denial, desertion: the disciples were lost and shattered. The one they adored and followed was crucified and publicly ridiculed. But, Jesus rose from the tomb. Everything changes.

Easter is our celebration of Jesus’ resurrection. It is understood as the defeat of the two worst fears of humanity: death and sin. Jesus defeated death once and for all. Death where is your sting? Where is your victory? Death will not bring fear and dread to our lives anymore. In Jesus, and through Jesus, we have life in full – in this world and in the world to come. Praise and thanks to God.

Sin, which has bound and suppressed humanity since the beginning of creation, you too have lost your grip. You will not terrorise and dominate anymore. God has defeated sin through Jesus, our Lord and Saviour. Jesus is the lamb of God, sacrificed on the cross for the sin of humanity. Jesus redeemed us from sin and brought us into a new relationship with God.

Sin, we know you are there, still trying to hurt and influence lives, but you are powerless, for our Lord Jesus reigns supreme forever.

Jesus Christ is risen. Alleluia. Praise God. Christians, get up and share this glorious news with all who will listen. This is the good news of salvation. It cannot be silenced.

Fakaofo Kaio
Moderator Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand