EASTERTIDE – 2008
When our dear Lord cried out from the Cross, “It is finished!” these were words of victory, not
defeat. Jesus came to save you from your sins. He fulfilled in His Person and Work every
requirement of the Old Testament Law. He offered Himself as Priest and Victim upon the Cross to pay the price of sin. He has finished the work of salvation His Father gave Him to do. His is the victory over the world, the flesh and the devil.
St. Peter says, “Christ died, the Just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God.” The veil in the temple was rent asunder showing that through His precious blood, Christ is the Way to the Father.You can not enter the Presence of God trusting in your own righteousness, but in His great mercy ‘under the blood of the Lamb.’
The teaching of the Old Testament is that without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sin.The Lord did not deal with your sin by simply setting it aside, saying everything is alright. He sent His Son into the world to make the acceptable sacrifice for sin. “There was no other good enough / To pay the price of sin, / He only could unlock the gate / Of heaven, and let us in.” None can go unto the Father but through His blood.
In the Sixth chapter of St. John’s Gospel our Lord speaks most plainly that you must eat His flesh and drink His blood to have His life in you. “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day. For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in them.” Some found this to be a hard saying and they deserted Him. In the Upper Room our Lord instituted the new covenant in His Body and Blood so that you can feed on Him and have His life in you.
The word Lent speaks to the lengthening of daylight as Spring draws nigh. Spring is the renewal of the earth after the time of death of Winter. It is nature’s way of proclaiming the blessed hope of the glorious resurrection of our Lord on the third day according to the Scriptures. Easter is the Spring of Souls from the prison of sin, for Jesus as a sun has risen and the Winter of your sins is flying.Those who believe on Jesus have His life to raise them up from sin and death in newness of life to live forever with the Lord.
We trust that you will have a most Blessed Easter and be filled with the confidences that “Now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept.” Because He lives, you, too, will live as you will be glorified together with Him. May the words of Jesus’ victory become your words of blessed assurance. “It is finished!”
Yours in that Blessed Hope,
The Right Reverend Thomas J. Kleppinger
EASTERTIDE – 2008