4.21.19 - God of Wholeness (Kenny Camacho; story by Travis Derico)
SCRIPTURE: Luke 24:1-48; Genesis 3:19
One of the most common questions surrounding the Easter story is why does Jesus have to die? It can seem unnecessary as a step in his ultimate plan to restore the relationship between God and his people, and even cruel. However, Jesus’s resurrection from the dead offers us the clearest picture in history of a greater miracle: by living and breathing again, Jesus proves that nothing takes us out of the reach of God’s love...and even more, the plan behind God’s love is true wholeness for his people. Jesus’s life is evidence of God’s desire to free us from the bondage of selfishness and sin and restore us to the lives he always intended for us: lives where we are fully known, deeply loved, and wholly equipped to testify to God’s love in the ways we love one another. Easter is the day we celebrate the incredible discovery that God isn’t planning a rescue...he is building a Kingdom, and we are invited to play a part.
The starting point for a Christian worldview is the belief that the way things are falls short of the way they were meant to be. Is that something you sense and/or believe about the world? Is it something you sense or believe about yourself?
In your experience, what gets in the way of things being the way they ought to be? Try to think this through with more than a one-word answer!
What do you think Jesus’s resurrection from death proves about him? What does it prove about God?
Sometimes, Christians talk about “salvation” as something that only applies to what happens after we die. How does Jesus’s resurrection challenge that idea? What does Jesus’s resurrection imply about what God wants for us?
Where are you hoping for wholeness in your life? What might an answered prayer for this look like?
Some Christians believe Jesus’s death was a necessary step of surrender before his ultimate victory over death three days later. In your own life, what “victory” are you hoping and praying for? What steps of surrender might God be calling you to on the way to that victory?