Putting Easter into Practice
UPDATE Sept 2021: I have come to believe that Jeff Crippen does not practise what he preaches. He vilely persecuted an abuse victim and spiritually abused many other people in the Tillamook congregation. Go here to read the evidence. Jeff has not gone to the people that he spiritually and emotionally abused. He has not apologised to them, let alone asked for their forgiveness.
Tomorrow is Good Friday. Nothing “good” about it in a sense. It was anything but good for the disciples, and for our Lord. A dark day of death and apparent victory by the enemy, when all seemed lost. But it was very, very good as it turns out. Our Passover Lamb was sacrificed and this time, He was the end of all Passover lambs. This Lamb was effective – His blood has made us as white as snow. From our perspective, as we look at that original Good Friday through the lens of Scripture, we see that God was orchestrating the whole thing all along. Every thorn in the crown, the very seamlessness of Jesus’ tunic, the nearby tomb of the rich man – the whole thing was a drama ordained in eternity past. The will of the Father was done.
What did the enemy and his minions think that first Easter morning? Stone rolled away, tomb is empty – with Jesus’ grave clothes laying there in perfect outline as if somehow the body they once enveloped had been suctioned right out from inside them. I think that is what Peter saw when we are told that he went inside, saw, and believed. The cross, as it turns out, was a master strategy from the Master. The greatest surprise attack of all time. Death was led captive and the enemy POW’s were marched on display. He is risen.
As Christ’s people, we are raised with Christ. Joined to Him by the Spirit of Christ, we are members of His body. His death is our death. His resurrection our resurrection. New life. New Creation. New mind. New heart. And a new destiny. Paul wrote about it to the Colossians –
Colossians 3:1-7, If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. (2) Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. (3) For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. (4) When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. (5) Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. (6) On account of these the wrath of God is coming. (7) In these you too once walked, when you were living in them.
This blog is about the evil of abuse and the wickedness it effects upon its victims. It is a cry for the evangelical church to wake up and repent of the injustice so often dealt to abuse victims who are sisters and brothers in Christ. But we hope that it is more than that. We hope and pray that in the end, all that we do and write here is about the Lord Jesus Christ. If we fail to point our readers to Him, then we fail. Christ is everything, our all in all. He is the answer to all of our woes, the Redeemer of all of our sins, the Judge of our oppressors. He is our life, and our real existence and home is up there, with Him.
So, as much as we call right now for justice, we also must call all of our readers to set their eyes and their ultimate hope upon Christ Jesus. Up there. That’s where He is. And he is coming, just as surely as He rose from the grave. He is coming for us. When He appears, what we really are will also appear. “You will appear with him in glory” doesn’t so much mean that we will be in heaven (glory), but that we will be fully redeemed, glorified, having come into full possession of all that He has won for us. The New Creation. New, eternal bodies. New. Everything will be New.
For now, we are working on living as the New Creations that we are in Him. We once walked as earthlings. Now we are aliens, and our Lord is working in us to teach us to live like the alien beings we really are. Live out the resurrection. Live like you are home already. Because in fact, you are – for you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ.