by Brent Amato
Easter - What is it to you?
A Sunday in Spring keyed to a specific date on a calendar? A bunny and colorful eggs for the children? An annual Christian festival celebrating the resurrection of Jesus?
The Bible teaches Easter is something personal, with implications for everyone.
Easter is the “Gospel,” “good news”. What is the “good news” for you?
Simply put, it is new life and part of that new life is eternal life with Jesus in Heaven.
Christ-Followers have heard this, understand its implications for them and responded to it. Jesus Himself made it clear:
“‘I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me shall live even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me shall never die….’” (John 11:25-26)
But there is a second component of the “good news” this side of physical death, for you who have already trusted Jesus Christ as your personal Savior to experience: new life that is abundant life, here and now. Again, Jesus makes it clear:
“‘I came that [true believers] might have life and might have it abundantly.’” (John 10:10b) This “abundant life” is in addition to eternal life after death. It is also “new life” but true for every remaining day you have here on earth. What might this “abundant life” include?
The Bible says “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ [a true believer in Him], he is a new creation. The old has passed away, behold the new has come.” (II Corinthians 5:17) So what might be new for you Christ-Followers this Easter, here and now?
-The Bible talks about newness of life with the new Spirit (the Holy Spirit) and a new heart, as opposed to our human spirit and heart (Ezekiel 36:26a, 11:19)-Given control of your life, how might the Holy Spirit change you? How might your heart be transformed to change you?
-The Bible talks about newness of life with a new way of living: “…in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.” (Romans 6:4b) - What attitudes and actions might change for you?
-The Bible talks about a newness of life in our worship: The Psalms proclaim, “Sing to Him a new song….” (Psalm 33:3a, 96:1a, 98:1a, 144:9a, 149:1b, Isaiah 42:10) - What might be your new song to God this Easter and beyond?
-The Bible talks about a newness of life in our service for God: “…that we serve in the new way of the Spirit.” (Romans 7:6a) - How might your ministry for God and to others change?
New life, not only for eternity but for now. “Jesus calls his followers, not to a dour, lifeless, miserable existence that squashes human potential, but to a rich, full, joyful life, one overflowing with meaningful activities, under the personal…blessing of God and in continual fellowship with his people.” (EVS Study Bible)
Will anything be “new” for you this Easter?
Is there anything new for the Christian lawyer? The Christian law student?
New evidence of God’s loving character personally manifested to you? A new way of living?
A new song? New service?
These CLS Devotionals normally leave you with a prayer. Let me leave you with a benediction:
“Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Romans 15:13)
This Easter-abundant life for you?
One can only hope.
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Brent Amato currently works part-time with the Christian Legal Society in Chicago, working with lawyers and law students. He practiced business/corporate law in the Chicago land area since 1976 and as of December 31, 2014 retired as Vice-President, General Counsel for a publicly-traded company. Brent has been active for over 40 years: with the Christian Legal Society, serving as former President and Board member; primarily in law student and attorney ministries. Brent and his wife Sherrie (who he met through CLS) have two adult married children and five grandchildren. For more information, visit his website at www.BrentAmato.com