We as Christians celebrate the risen Christ! This is the reason for our great hope. If we were to summarize just what the message of Easter is, it would be hope. No longer do sin, death, and evil have power – in the world, or over us. We have been freed from this bondage of sin, death, and evil.
As called, gathered, and claimed Christians we wear the sign of the cross in our baptism. We are marked with the cross of Christ, and sealed with the power of the Holy Spirit forever. The great hope of the resurrection is that no longer are we in bondage to the world and its ways. As Christians we are not bound to God’s law in order that we might try to earn our righteousness. Instead we are reminded that through Christ’s actions on the cross we receive justification. Christ went to the cross and bore the weight of our sin fully as he innocently suffered upon the cross. He died and rose three days later, defeating death once and for all.
Because of this action we are not left carrying the sentence of the conviction of our sins. We have been freed, the debt has been paid, and we have been ransomed from our sin and death. Christ’s death was the ransom to pay the debt which we have incurred. In this we are freed. We have the promise of the forgiveness of sins. We are freed from trying to repay the debt ourselves, and we are freed from trying to earn our way to God. God came down, for you. You have the freedom that Martin Luther defines as “A Christian is a perfectly free lord of all, subject to none. A Christian is a perfectly dutiful servant of all, subject to all.”
We are subject to no person, power, or anything in all the world. We have been called, ransomed, and claimed by Christ. Marked with his cross, we wear the sign that we are his…and he is ours. That being said, as a Christian we are a dutiful servant to all, subject to all. We as disciples, followers of Christ, follow Christ in his model of servant leadership. This means that in order to be leader, you must be servant first – for Christ came not to be served, but to serve. This great freedom we receive from Christ is not one we might use in order to serve the desires of our own flesh. It should be one in which through our actions of love in the world, the love and light that we have received from Christ might be reflected into the world.
“You don’t have to, you get to.” Growing up I hated that phrase when it was used to coerce me into doing something, Usually I was being told to do something by an elder, and I truly had no option – had to. But this freedom in Christ is just that, a gift. We don’t have to do anything to be loved, or continue to be loved by God. We get to.
When maturity of faith realizes the great sacrifice that was paid by Jesus’ death and resurrection, we realize the great gift we’ve received. We realize the great love that we’ve received. Knowing this, we do not have to do anything. But we do get to share this great love in our lives. The light we have received from Christ we can reflect into the world through our thoughts, words, and deeds.
Let our lights shine before others, gladly, so we may be a great beacon of light, in order that our Father in heaven might be glorified.