Even though some experts doubt whether he really rose from the dead, almost all, credible historians agree that Jesus of Nazareth was executed on a Roman Cross in Jerusalem, around 30 AD.
Yet, not all Christians agree about why he died.
Some say that he was killed by the religious rulers because his example and teaching of love were a threat to their system.
Others say that he died because he wanted to prove how much he really loves us, as the ultimate gift to humanity.
But in the end, we don’t need someone to tell us how to love, or someone to show us how to love, or even someone to prove his love for us.
Our big problem is that we’re all born as natural enemies of God, and unless someone deals with God’s anger for us, then we’re headed to Hell.
That’s why Jesus died for us: to take upon himself the anger that God had for us, so that we might now be forgiven by him and made his friends, if we trust in him as our loving ruler.
It’s pretty full on… but that’s the heart of Easter!
And by rising from the dead, Jesus proved he really did what his Father in heaven sent him to do.
As we read in Romans chapter 5:
When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners. Now, most people would not be willing to die for an upright person, though someone might perhaps be willing to die for a person who is especially good. But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. (Romans 5:6-8)
That’s why Good Friday is ‘good’… and why we can truly wish each other a ‘Happy Easter!’
(Credit: Claudio Ungari via Flickr)