What’s the typical cliff notes version of Easter that we all know? The culmination and “Grand Finale” to Christ’s life and ministry with the ultimate, most brutal and final blood sacrifice of the purest possible lamb? All to set the stage for the resurrection and soon after ascension to Heaven.. right? OK I know, seems almost blasphemous to attempt to summarize all that and all that I didn’t mention into one short sentence. I agree… let’s not do that. But rather repeat what most half established believers already know, let’s take a different approach.
So much of my view on the Bible and studying it’s words seems, more often than not, to encompass and mean more when you take the whole Bible (“Rightly Divided”) into context and understand how the Beginning and the End impact the middle, or what is usually the topic of the day. So what does “The Beginning” have to say about this.
Gen 1:28 outlines how God made had made man and also all the animals and he handed the authority of the animals and the earth to Man. God put the earth and all that was in it under mans power or authority.
So man is the Boss on earth under God…. that was the plan. But man ruined that. I’m not saying that Satan won over the authority of the earth with the action of the fall, but it’s definitely arguable considering that with he authority over the earth Adam didn’t have to cultivate the land, but with his punishment he did indeed have to begin working the dirt. He no longer had dominion and authority of the earth… he was just along for the ride. Later when Jesus was in the wilderness for 40 days Satan tempted him and I’m not sure if the temptation was based on a lie or if he was the truth, but Satan says in Luke 4:6 that “I will give you all this domain in it’s glory; for it has been handed over to me”. I think it’s plausible that when Satan made the deal with Eve that indeed he took away their dominion of earth for himself to own. Prior to the fall of Man, God and Man were in charge and Satan was a guest. Evil was in the earth, but after the fall, evil took hold and began to orchestrate it’s own plan.
What does this have to do with Easter? Remember the words of Christ as He’s wrapping up the last supper. He just told them it’s all about to be over… and he’s leaving. Listen to his words… “… I go to prepare a place for you.” This simply implies that currently there isn’t a place in his Father’s house for us. I think often we assume that when He gave up the ghost that the place was made, but when he gave up the ghost he hadn’t “gone to prepare a place yet”. How do we know this? When Mary Magdalene came to the tomb Easter morning and saw Jesus she at first didn’t recognize him. The Bible says she took him for the gardener. Think about it… gardeners are filthy… probably especially back then. Even clean people didn’t bath regularly so a gardener… in the desert?!?! Yeah dirty fella. Why was Christ so dirty that his friend didn’t recognize him? He was carrying all the sinful filth on Him because as he told her when she finally realized it indeed was Jesus he said in John 20:17 “Don’t touch me… I’ve NOT YET ASCENDED TO THE FATHER”. He tells her “I’m AM ascending to my Father and YOUR father…”. Verse 19 says “Then, THE SAME DAY AT EVENING….. Jesus came and stood in the midst of them and said “Peace be with you”. What did he say earlier in John 14:25-28? I’ll paraphrase: ‘I’ve told you the Holy Spirit who the Father will send in my name, will teach you and give you remembrance of my teachings.. and I will leave you with Peace. I’m going away and coming back to you… you should be happy and rejoice because I’m going to the Father and coming back to you. And I’m telling this to you now before it happens so you may believe when it does happen”. This isn’t talking about the 2nd coming! We often attribute all this to the 2nd coming but it’s not. John 16:16-20 clearly says “A little while, and you will no longer see me and AGAIN in a little while you will see me”. A little while the first time refers to the death which is within hours… so the AGAIN would refer to the same relative time. John 20:19 says “Then the same day at evening”… a little while…. he came back. John 16:20 says when he leaves “you will weep and lament but the world will rejoice”. When the Crucifixion happened the disciples did weep and lament… but the world celebrated the death. Christ said when he comes back that their grief will be turned into joy. The first words from his mouth after going to the father was “Peace be with you”. Later in the scripture he says “in Me you may have peace…. I have OVERCOME THE WORLD”. He took back control and what did he do with it? He went to the Father beaten, bruised and dirty with a world of sins past and sins to come and said here’s the key to the world… here’s the sin… his the blame.. his the bloodied lamb; Forgive them. Make room for them here in your house. From this day forward they will ask for things in my name and it will be given. He turned away and came back to earth with peace. Why peace? Because the Father agreed that the sacrifice was sufficient. Hebrews 9:12 says “He entered the holy place once and for all and obtained eternal redemption”. That’s gotta be one of the best scriptures in the Bible!
Finally back to the Judgement Day #1! Daniel 7 speaks of the 4 beasts… yeah we usually attribute that to the end of times. But after he details the 4 beasts he says in verse 9 “The Ancient of Days took his seat”; (then describes God and his throne)… says a million ministered unto him and a hundred thousand stood before him… THE JUDGEMENT WAS SET. It says “the beast” (singular) was slain and it’s body destroyed” but for the rest of the beast “THEIR DOMINION WAS TAKEN AWAY… but an extension of life was granted to them for an appointed period of time“. Then in comes Christ with the “clouds of heaven” to God. [Hebrews 12:1 calls the old testament saints “that great cloud of witnesses”…. and remember, when Christ gave up the Ghost the graves opened and the old saints arose and went into the old city and many saw them”… they were there until Christs’ ascension on the 3rd day]. Back to Daniel 7:14 and to Him (Christ) was given DOMINION. Daniel 7:21-22: “… that horn was waging war with the saints and overpowering them UNTIL the Ancient of Days came and judgement was passed in favor of the saints of the Highest one”. Then the prophecy goes on to talk about additional kingdoms and battles… verse 25 even says “… and he will intend to make alterations in times and in law; and they will be given unto his hand for a time, times and half a time…. but the court will sit for a judgement (not the one that was already had) and his DOMINION will be taken away.
So I don’t know how much of that fully outlines events that happened 2000 years ago and how much applies to the final judgement. But I do believe when Christ went up on Easter day to some level there was a presentation of his sacrifice. Christ laid all the sins of ours, and of the saints he arrives with from the opened graves and said “HERE!… it’s done”. That metaphorical mic drop moment in all of history where he obtained redemption. His Father cleaned him up and robed him with Glory and the Holy Spirit all which equaled peace and he came back to deliver it. Peace wasn’t obtained on the cross. Redemption wasn’t awarded on the cross. Forgiveness wasn’t granted on the cross. Christ said he WOULD go to his father to prepare a place… a place we didn’t have yet. As of the 3rd day/morning he hadn’t gone up yet. The disciples were locked up and fear and doubt for 3 days. THEN after Christ took back dominion, obtained forgiveness, he came back with peace because THEN it was finished. To me Easter isn’t about the cross or really even the resurrection as much as that 1st Judgement day when Christ laid our sins, and his blood at the Ancient of Days’ feet. The judgement was passed in favor of you! It was all part of a plan, but you gotta think God and Christ embraced like when the prodigal son returned home. But rather than his own mistakes, he brought home our mistakes drenched in his blood. I’d like to think that when that embrace was released that was the moment Christ appeared clean and adorned in his Glory and prepared for his final mission… to deliver Peace on Easter.
(Topical/Research Credit: this outline comes directly from the sermon called “Dominion” from Robert Morris of the Gateway Church on 4/2/18. Watch that sermon on youtube for even more clarity. CLICK HERE FOR THAT VIDEO)
(And as always with this post or any, please I’d love to hear your comments. Not comments of just appreciation of the post, but your thoughts on the topic at hand. I would love for this site to become a discussion board or bible study type platform for those interested in being a part of the community)