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Easter Fun Facts

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Now that the Easter holiday is over and we have enjoyed good worship, food and companionship. Here are some fun facts about Easter you might not have known…

  • The tallest Easter egg chocolate was made in Italy in 2011. It stood at 10.39 meters and weighed an astounding 7,200 kg
  • The art of painting eggs is called pysanka, which originated in Ukraine. It involves using wax and dyes to color the egg.
  • The term Easter gets its name from Eastre, the Anglo-Saxon goddess who symbolizes the hare and the egg.
  • During the holiday, more than 90 million chocolate bunnies, 91.4 billion eggs, and 700 million Peeps are produced each year in the United States alone. 
    The Easter egg is said to symbolize and represent joy, celebration and new life.
  • Easter is the celebration of the resurrection of Christ; it is the oldest Christian holiday and one of the most important days of the year.
  • The idea of the Easter bunny giving candies and eggs is said to have originated in Germany during the middle ages.
  • Easter is a fun family tradition that never gets old.

Source: EliteDaily

Holy Week…Easter Sunday

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Excerpts from “Your Sorrow WIll Turn To Joy | Desiring God

“A Blood-Bought Joy
Jesus spoke of this joy as he faced the torture of Good Friday. He faced denial, faced betrayal, faced beatings, faced splinters and nails and spears—he could not stop talking about joy! Only joy would keep him going. Joy was on his mind, joy was on his tongue, and joy was drawing him, not away from suffering, but into it (Heb. 12:2).
Jesus went to the cross for joy: to buy joy, create joy, and offer joy.
As the world celebrated the savage killing of God, out of this sea of foaming rebel hostility emerged a blood-bought, inextinguishable joy.
An Unbreakable Joy
If the killing of the Author of life could not extinguish this joy Jesus speaks about, nothing can—and nothing ever will. No opposition from the world, no opposition to the gospel, and no cultural despising of Christ will overcome the resurrection joy of Jesus.
As we have seen this week, the unquenchable joy of Easter was birthed in the greatest trauma and tragedy and evil the world has ever unleashed—the murder of the Son of God. Death, the Devil, demons, and the coordi”“coordinated rebellion of mankind all allied together cannot stymie this joy. Persecutors cannot steal this joy away. No power, no event, no enemy, can sequester the resurrection joy of Jesus Christ that burst out of the tomb with him.
Worldly joys are brittle in comparison. Sickness and poverty crumble joy, and the long process of aging and dying slowly strips life of all its worldly pleasures (Eccles. 12:1–8). Death recedes all our joys, save one. Only one joy cannot be thwarted by death, because only one joy was purchased by blood.”

“Inexpressible Joy for You
But Jesus’s bold resurrection joy promised to the disciples in John 16:19–24 is now offered to you and me. We are promised the same “joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory” (1 Pet. 1:8).
In Christ, God delights to pour out this resurrection joy into your life, a joy that fills, and a joy that cannot be stolen from you. What do we do? We simply ask our gracious Father for more of it!
The Easter joy Jesus foretold has arrived, and it’s deeply personal. The resurrection is both a cosmic event, and it comes intimately close, reminding us of God’s work in our lives. “The point of Easter is that God is in the process of clearing this world of all heartbreak” (John Piper). Therefore, “Christ’s resurrection not only gives you hope for the future; it gives you hope to handle your scars right now” (Tim Keller).
Such a restoring and reviving joy was purchased for you and me in the resurrection of Christ.”

“Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has risen; he is not here. See the place where they laid him.” (Mark 16:6)”

“More Than Conquerors
Indeed, even agony will turn to glory, but Easter doesn’t suppress our pain. It doesn’t minimize our loss. It bids our burdens stand as they are, in all their weight, with all their threats. And this risen Christ, with the brilliance of indestructible life in his eyes, says, “These too I will claim in the victory. These too will serve your joy. These too, even these, I can make an occasion for rejoicing. I have overcome, and you will more than conquer.”
Easter is not an occasion to repress whatever ails you and put on a happy face. Rather, the joy of Easter speaks tenderly to the pains that plague you. Whatever loss you lament, whatever burden weighs you down, Easter says, “It will not always be this way for you. The new age has begun. Jesus has risen, and the kingdom of the Messiah is here. He has conquered death and sin and hell. He is alive and on his throne. And he is putting your enemies, all your enemies, under his feet.”
Not only will he remedy what’s wrong in your life and bring glorious order to the mess and vanquish your foe, but[…]”

“ushers us into a garden-city, the New Jerusalem. Easter announces, in the voice of the risen Christ, “Your sorrow will turn into joy” (John 16:20) and “no one will take your joy from you” (John 16:22).
Easter declares, for all time, that the one who has conquered death has now made it the servant of our joy.”

Holy Week… Holy Saturday

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Excerpts from “Your Sorrow WIll Turn To Joy | Desiring God

“The Sin That Nailed Him There
This is sin, to reject Jesus, to declare he is nothing but a delusional or deceitful man. And this was the condition of our heart, when filled with unbelief, we rejected God, his Son, and his sacrifice. We have screamed, “Crucify him!” with our unfaithfulness and disobedience. We have said with the crowd, “He is not our King!” “He is not our Messiah!” “Let his blood be on us!”
But God, being rich in mercy and being patient with us, his chosen people, “has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of [this crucified] Christ” (2 Cor. 4:6). And being alive by faith in him, we cling to the cross on which our Savior died. It is by his precious blood that we are forgiven and freed from sin and its consequences.
Same Cross, New Cry
So, now, we say with an entirely different meaning, let his blood be on us, not defiantly as the crowds that crucified him, but desperately—with gratitude and hope and adoration—as those who depend wholly on his sacrifice. Jesus, let your blood be[…]”

“What Is Death?
First of all, what exactly is death? Death is separation, a dividing of things that ought to be united. Fundamentally, it is separation from God. Paul suggests as much in Ephesians 2:1: “You were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked.” To walk in sin is to be dead, to be enslaved to dark powers, to be separated from God, to be children of his wrath. This type of separation is an estrangement, a hostility, an alienation from the life and hope of the living God. In this sense, all of us, by nature, are born dead, and it is this death that Jesus endured in his suffering on the cross.
But of course, death is more than just separation from God. Death also marks the separation of the soul from the body. God made human beings to be embodied souls and ensouled bodies, and death rips this union asunder. But what happens to these two parts after they’re separated? Psalm 16:10 gives us a window into the biblical teaching.
You will not abandon my soul to Sheol,
or let your holy one see corruption.”

Holy Week…Good Friday

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Excerpts from “Your Sorrow WIll Turn To Joy | Desiring God

“It is mid-afternoon now and the eerie darkness that has fallen has everyone on edge. But for Jesus, the darkness is a horror he has never known. This, more than the nails and thorns and lashings, is what made him sweat blood in the garden. The Father’s wrath is hitting him in full force. He is in that moment no longer the Blessed,”

“but the Cursed (Gal. 3:13). He has become sin (2 Cor. 5:21). In terrifying isolation, cut off from his Father and all humans, he screams, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani,” Aramaic for “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Matt. 27:46; Ps. 22:1). No greater love (John 15:13), humility (Phil. 2:8), or obedience (Heb. 5:8) has ever or will ever be displayed.
Shortly after 3:00 P.M., Jesus whispers hoarsely for a drink. In love, he has drained the cup of his Father’s wrath to the dregs. He has born our full curse. There is no debt left to pay and he has nothing left to give. The wine moistens his mouth just enough to say one final word: “It is finished” (John 19:30). And God the Son dies.
It is the worst and best of all human deaths. For on this tree he bears our sins in his body (1 Pet. 2:24), “the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God” (1 Pet. 3:18). And now it is finished.”

“Against All Hope
There are certainly some very clear negatives. The forsakenness cannot mean, for example, that the eternal communion between the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit was broken. God could not cease to be triune.
Neither could it mean that the Father ceased to love the Son: especially not here, and not now, when the Son was offering the greatest tribute of filial piety that the Father had ever received.
Nor again could it mean that the Holy Spirit had ceased to minister to the Son. He had come down upon him at his baptism not merely for one fleeting moment, but to remain on him (John 1:32), and he would be there to the last as the eternal Spirit through whom the Son offered himself to God (Heb. 9:14).
And finally, the words are not a cry of despair. Despair would have been sin. Even in the darkness God was, “My God,” and though there was no sign of him, and though the pain obscured the promises, somewhere in the depths of his soul there remained the assurance that God was holding him. What was true of Abraham was truer still of Jesus[…]”

Holy Week…Maundy Thursday

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Excerpts from “Your Sorrow WIll Turn To Joy | Desiring God

Maundy Thursday

“In this familiar garden of prayer, Jesus looked deeply into the Father’s Cup he was about to drink and was terrified. Everything in his human flesh wanted to flee the impending physical torture of crucifixion. And his Holy Spirit groaned with ineffable dread at the far greater impending spiritual torture of being forsaken by his Father.”

“No one understands better than God how difficult it can be for a human to embrace the will of God. And no human has suffered more in embracing the will of God the Father than God the Son. When Jesus calls us to follow him, whatever the cost, he is not calling us to do something he is either unwilling to do or has never done himself.
That is why we look to Jesus as the “author and perfecter of our faith” (Heb. 12:2). He is our great high priest who understands, far better than we do, what it’s like to willingly and faithfully endure the sometimes excruciating, momentarily painful will of God for the sake of the eternal joy set before us (Heb. 4:15; 12:2). And now he always lives to intercede for us so that we will make it through the pain to the eternal joy (Heb. 7:25).
So this Maundy Thursday, we join God the Son in praying to God the Father, “Your will be done” (Matt. 6:10). And if we find that, in body and soul, we wish God’s will for us could be done in a way different from[…]”

Holy Week… Spy Wednesday

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Excerpts from “Your Sorrow WIll Turn To Joy | Desiring God

Spy Wednesday

Blind to the Value of Christ
And yet, the irony of Mark 14 is that Judas could see the value of the ointment rolling down Jesus’s head, but he couldn’t see the value of Jesus. He was a pawnbroker with cataracts. That’s why he took such offense at the woman. The woman, on the other hand, could see both the value of the ointment and the value of Jesus. That’s why she broke the flask.
Spy Wednesday is a tragic reminder of 1 Tim. 6:10: “The love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs.”
But Spy Wednesday is also full of hope, because it shows us that the beauty of Jesus can break the spell of financial gain. This is the woman’s message to us, a message that Jesus wanted us to hear again and again: “Truly, I say to you, wherever the gospel is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will be told in memory of her” (Mark 14:9).”

 

Holy Week…Holy Tuesday

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Holy Tuesday

Excerpts from “Your Sorrow WIll Turn To Joy | Desiring God

“The Son of Suffering, Not Comfort
The drama begins with that question, “Who do you say that I am?” “You are the Christ” (Mark 8:29). Peter was simultaneously very right, and very wrong. The word Christ was fitting in every respect. It was the right answer. But even though Peter’s profile of the promised one was rightly named, it fell woefully flat.
Jesus paints a more detailed portrait of the Christ—the job description of the most important human who’s ever lived:
He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes and be killed, and after three days rise again. (Mark 8:31)
Peter (and presumably the other disciples) despised the idea of a suffering Christ. That’s why he immediately gets in Jesus’s face (Mark 8:32). Having rightly identified the Christ, he then presumed to have the perspective and authority to correct him. Right, yet tragically wrong.
The only Savior who truly saves, only saves through suffering. The cross was the only means of making us sin”

“sinners right before a holy God. Our salvation was purchased with suffering, and it will be sealed and preserved with suffering (James 1:2–4), not comfort. We are promised comfort in the Christian life (2 Cor. 1:4), but not the cheap, temporal imitation we’ve grown accustomed to in our modern world.
If we come to the crucified one expecting him to make life easier and more comfortable, we’re not listening to him. Jesus says, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me” (Mark 8:34).”

“Jesus tells them that a day is soon coming when not a single stone will be left upon another. He goes on to explain that his followers will experience increasing persecution and tribulation, leading up to the final Day of Judgment. But their task is to remain vigilant and persist in faith.”

Holy Week Series… Holy Mondy

Holy Monday

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Excerpts from “Your Sorrow Will Turn To Joy | Desiring God

Holy Monday

“And here is the lesson for us on this Monday of Holy Week, or really, here is the question: How well does our worship prefigure the prophetic vision of the new creation? Do our relational investments and our corporate gatherings reflect, even in a small way, the heart of a God who gathers the outcasts?
This question is no more relevant than on Easter, when our churches try especially to look their finest. When we assemble for worship this weekend, no one will set up tables to exchange currency. No one will lead in their oxen in hopes of getting rich. No one will tote a cage of high-priced pigeons. But our decorations may be elaborate. Our attire may be elegant. Our music may be world-class. We may put exuberant energy into these things, and make it an impressive spectacle. But if Jesus were to come, if he were to step into our churches this Sunday, he’d be looking for the rabble. Where are the misfits, the socially marginalized, the outcasts?
There is plenty of life in the veins of Easter to propel us beyond our comforts, our cliques, and our Sunday best, and send us powerfully[…]”

Holy Week Series…Your Sorrow Will Turn To Joy |Desiring God – Palm Sunday

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I came across this book ” Your Sorrow Will Turn to Joy | Desiring God” last year and I really loved it. I promised myself I would share excerpt from it this year, 2018 Easter. Before I knew i, we were already on Good Friday. But none the less, I will share excerpt from the book for each day and I encourage every one to read it. I pray it gives you clarity, wisdom and insight like it did me.

Palm Sunday 

“We admire power more when it I merciful power. And we admire mercy more when it i mighty mercy.

Oh that we would see and savor the beauty og Christ – the Palm Sunday tears of sovereign joy and the self-sacrificing love and obedience that took him every step of the way during Holy Week. And oh that as we admire and worship him this week we would be changed by what we see and become more tenderly moved, self-denying, need-meeting people”.

 

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