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Can You Believe Jesus?

Built on a Rock
Pastor Andrew Palmquist, Bethany Lutheran Church, Luverne

If someone told you that he could leap over a building or a skyscraper in a single bound, that he could run a marathon in under 2 1/2 hours, or that he could do 200 pushups in a row, you would probably have good reason to be skeptical of that person’s claims. These aren’t things people can normally do! But if that person then took you to a building and leaped over it in a single bound, you’d probably say, “Wow! Okay. You don’t have to do the marathon or the pushups. I believe you because you are able to do that one thing.”
The resurrection of our Lord Jesus at Easter is the one thing that proves to us Jesus is the Son of God. And if he is the Son of God, you can also believe what he says. Jesus once said: “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up again.” John 2:19
The temple he was talking about here was not the temple made with stones in Jerusalem. The temple was his own body. After his arrest, an illegal trial, being unjustly accused, and suffering great pain at the hands of his enemies, Christ Jesus, though totally innocent of any crimes, was put to death on a Roman cross on Good Friday. But then, three days later, on that first Easter Sunday morning when Jesus was not found dead and buried in the tomb, but alive — risen from the dead — he demonstrated that his Word is true. He fulfilled what he said. For that reason, you can believe all of the other incredible claims Jesus made.
This means you can also trust God’s Word when Jesus says your biggest problem is sin. It’s not your finances or your personal relationships; rather, it is that you have broken God’s Law. But you can also believe and rejoice in Jesus’ other promises to you, such as when he says, “I have forgiven all of your sins. I paid for them all on the cross!”
Yes, Christ even took up our folly and shame. He made himself an easy prey for an unseen enemy who couldn’t resist falling on him in such a state of foolishness and weakness.
“Even when you were dead in your trespasses ... God made you alive with Christ by forgiving us all our trespasses. God erased the record of our debt brought against us by his legal demands. … He took it away by nailing it to the cross. After disarming the rulers and authorities (the devil and all his rebellious spirits), he made a public display of them by triumphing over them in Christ.” Col 2:13-15
In light of his vacant tomb — for Jesus is risen! — how blessed we are to be called to share in his divine foolishness!
“For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” 1 Cor 1:18
And therefore you and I can also believe his words when he says, “One day I am going to send my angels to lift you up and bring you to be with me in heaven.”
Please join us at God’s House for Lenten worship and a joyful celebration of Christ’s resurrection from the dead. Jesus is risen indeed! Alleluia! 
(Adapted from Good News for You! 2020 Peace Devotions)

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