“For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures.”
(1 Corinthians 15:3-4, NIV)
Easter. It’s a powerful focal point for our faith. Death, burial, and resurrection is what Paul calls to our remembrance in 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4, this being the core of the Gospel. And this is what gives me hope! This Easter, I think of our missionary personnel faithfully serving Jesus in COVID conditions. They are filled with hope because of the Gospel.
Specifically, I ask you to pray for our team in Lebanon. Why should they have hope? Their country is in a financial crisis with sky-high inflation. The port area of Beirut was decimated by an explosion seven months ago. The Syrian refugee crisis has brought another population into their country. Again I ask, why they should have hope. Humanly speaking there is no answer, except for the message of Easter! The resurrection of Jesus Christ changes everything.
Anne Theriault tweeted the following recently...
“When Christopher Wren was re-building London’s St. Paul‘s Cathedral after the Great Fire of London, he used stones from old structure. He found one that said “resurgam” — “I shall rise again” — and had the word inscribed on the south pediment door along with an image of a phoenix.”
In Mark’s Gospel 14:58 those condemning Jesus stated, “We heard him say, ‘I will destroy this temple that is made with hands, and in three days I will build another, not made with hands’.”
Now we know He was referring to his own body which was to be crucified for us.
Will Lebanon rise again? Rise from the ashes, so to speak? It may, but it may continue in its crises for decades. The hope of the Gospel and the hope of the resurrection propels our team of workers in Lebanon to move forward sacrificially in service every day. Pray for them as they reach out to people with no hope or who have lost hope. Easter provides hope for us all but especially Lebanon at this critical time.