“The Ultimate Sacrifice”

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During the past week I was immediately struck by the above headline of an article in my local newspaper. The first paragraph of this article read: “This coming Easter Sunday will see people joining together to celebrate the ultimate sacrifice that can be made by any one person or group of people, dying for a cause.” However, of course the article was about the 100th anniversary of the 1916 Easter Rising, prior to the formation of the Irish Free State and later the Republic of Ireland – but I could not help noticing the spiritual parallel!

The online ‘Urban Dictionary’ informs me that ‘the ultimate sacrifice’ is ‘to give everything you have to save someone or something that you hold most dear.’

In the midst of all the celebrations to mark this occasion, I wonder how many are thinking of the greatest ultimate sacrifice that this world has ever known… or will ever know? We are indeed ‘most dear;’ our souls most precious to the Lord Jesus Christ, to the extent that He left the riches of Glory, to descend into this world of sinners, to be held in derision and contempt, to be mocked – and then to suffer the most agonising death at the hands of ignorant people who hated Him “without a cause.”

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” (John 3v16) What a noble sacrifice! This sacrifice has indeed given a life changing and an eternity changing opportunity to every single member of the human race; the opportunity to be free from sin, spiritual death – and ultimately the unthinkable horrors of hell.

In return for this ultimate sacrifice, the Lord Jesus wants nothing – but our repentant hearts, our love and our obedience. “How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation?” (Hebrews 2v3) “But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.” (Hebrews 2v9)

Many will celebrate a ‘rising’ in the political sense this Easter… but how many will celebrate the greatest and most victorious rising that ever was or will be? “He is not here: for he is risen, as he said, Come, see the place where the Lord lay.” (Matthew 28v6)

Oh that you, the reader, would taste and see… the love that Jesus hath for thee! Jesus said: “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”  (John 16v33)

“And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins: But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God;” (Hebrews 10v11/12)

“And as it is appointed unto man once to die, but after this the judgement: So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.” (Hebrews 9v27&28) My prayer is that all who read would truly be found ‘looking for Him’ upon the return of the Lord Jesus Christ.

 

 

 

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