As we celebrate this amazing weekend in world history, it’s incredible to think that the King of Kings, the Lord of Lords, Creator of Universes, Giver of Life – came here for me. And you. He’d have come if had JUST been for me. Or you. And as hung on the Cross of Calvary, he looked down into history yet to happen, and saw us – and his love overflowed for us. Our eternal security is an incredible promise for all who know and love him. Years ago, I read something that the lovely Max Lucado, the American writer, wrote. I don’t know which of his many books it was in, but he wrote some life-changing things in his books about Easter – ‘No Wonder they call Him the Saviour’; ‘And the Angels were silent’; ‘He still moves Stones’; and ‘Six hours one Friday’. All are wonderful, and well worth reading.
What I read, that impacted me massively then, and still does, is this:
- The battle is won. You may have thought it was won on Golgotha. It wasn’t. You may have thought the sign of victory is the empty tomb. It isn’t. The final battle was won in Gethsemane. And the sign of conquest is Jesus at peace in the Olive trees. For it was in the Garden that He made his decision: HE’D RATHER GO TO HELL FOR YOU, THAN GO TO HEAVEN WITHOUT YOU. Those same hands that created the universe will wipe your cheek. The same hands that clenched as a Roman spike smashed through them, will wipe your face, and wipe your face, and brush away your tears – FOREVER.
- Whatever pain we suffer, whatever mental anguish we endure, whatever trauma we’ve faced or face – none compare to what Jesus experienced 2000 years ago. We know that he experienced everything that we do, and he understands.
- Hebrews 4:14-16 – Therefore, since we have such a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to what we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who was tempted in every way that we are, yet was without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.…
Hallelujah, what a Saviour.
And by His stripes, we’re healed. It’s a constant amazement to me that there are still so many people who don’t believe that God does miracles, and heals, today. Why would he still save – the primary purpose of the Cross – and not heal, when so many Scriptures tell us that he and his Father long for our healing? I am SO glad that he saves: God only knows who, what, or where I’d be, if Jesus hadn’t saved me. And healed me…. healed, when healing didn’t happen in churches, in the 1960s, of celiac disease: healed of life-long back pain when I was 18 – I was born with a hole in my spine, if I remember well it was a ‘small spina-bifida of the neural arch, less than a centimetre from being a full spina-bida victim. And 5 weeks ago, the miracle of osteoarthritic knees being healed. All three of those things are medically and humanly incurable.
The last couple of nights, I’ve had the privilege of speaking at a lovely Church of Ireland, St Hilda’s, in Seymour Hill, Dunmurry, Belfast. The Rector, David Boyland, and his lovely wife, Glynis, know, too, the miracle power of Jesus, when Glynis was unbelievably ‘miracled’ some 4-5 years ago. The faith expectation that they have sown into their church must be unique: and over these two evenings, God has done some wonderful things.
A lovely lady, Marguerita, had asked for prayer for a totally deformed spine, which for the previous 20 years had given her 10/10 pain, 24/7. I’ll get the name of the condition at tonight’s meeting, maybe even a video of her if she’ll let me….she hadn’t been able to stand upright, ever, was on massive pain killers, and the condition was totally incurable, not even really manageable. She had taken only one pain killer yesterday (and that, she said, was because she’d had no pain, and done too much in the day!), and she stood upright against a wall, and was almost perfectly straight … normally, she told me, her head was tilted forward at about 45 degrees. She testified in the meeting to the miracle that God had done for her. Thank you, thank you, Jesus!!
Maureen, 89, has begun to experience better vision after years of cataracts, and had new strength and energy yesterday, like she’s not known for many years. Other spinal conditions were healed or eased: as always, knees got healed (I’m so glad that God is still healing knees even though mine are now so massivley better! – I prayed that he’d keep doing it even once my pain had gone). There were many other diseases, infirmities, and ailments, that God touched: I’ll find out more tonight! I’m there on Sunday morning, too, and then with St Hilda’s, the Methodist Church, and the Presbyterian churches, on Sunday evening.
Heaven touched earth with the love, mercy, grace, and healing power of the risen Lord Jesus: I’m praying that what’s been happening in Londonderry will break out big-time in Belfast and all of the ‘satellite’ towns around it. And then spread across the whole of this lovely province.