"Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends," (John 15:13, King James Version). One question that seems to preclude an answer among believers is 'which one is more important, Christmas or Easter'? This may appear similar to the mystery of which comes first, the chicken or the egg? However, the real issue is not about the event but rather the demonstration of God's overwhelming Love for mankind. It is very important to examine what Jesus did for us when He went to the cross to lay down his life. It was not a walk in the park for him but an action that came at great cost or rather the ultimate cost, his life.
This becomes even more real when we consider the following:
During his 33 years on Earth, Jesus was a man like any born again, spirit-filled child of God, able to feel pain, fear and death, able to choose, able to say no and decide to avoid pain.
He willingly submitted His will to do what the Father wanted. He said no man took his life from Him but that he willingly laid it down.
He was fully aware of the suffering and pain ahead of him and ultimately the horrible death waiting, yet he went all the way.
He did not differentiate who He will stand for, as a substitute. He did it for All. Both the good, the bad and the wicked; while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us (Rom 5:8). He did not die for just His friends but for his enemies.
He paid in full for all our sins committed, past present and future.
His death not only brings forgiveness of sins for us, but also healing, deliverance, freedom, joy and total restoration back to God, making us joint heirs with himself
There is no condition attached before he could love us and he made it clear that nothing can separate us from his love.
Indeed, giving His life for us is the greatest love that can never be equaled.
To crown it all, not only did Jesus take care of our past and present by his death, He went ahead to take care of the future as well. How? He did not stay dead, but because He rose again, he has given us the hope of resurrection and eternal reign. Not only do we not have to pay for our sins anymore, we get to live victoriously in this life, and then with Him for eternity. Because He lives, we can face tomorrow with Joy.
The icing on the cake is that He ever lives to intercede for us even after sending us the Holy Spirit to be our Helper for the journey ahead. Can it get any better than this? There is no other word to describe this show of love by Jesus but 'overwhelming'. As we meditate on His love for us this season, we can't help but fall head over heels in love with Him again and again.
Indeed we can say we love you Jesus because you first loved us overwhelmingly. Accept His love today if you have not, and begin to love Him now and always by doing what He says in His Word. That is the proof of our love for Him. “If you love me, keep my commandments.” (John 14:15, New King James Version).