The Two Greatest Events in History

The Two Greatest Events in History

March 28, 2024

There is no question that the resurrection of Jesus Christ stands as the most pivotal moment in human history. The life-giving power of God Himself infused the dead body of our Savior, His only Son, with life, and Jesus rose again in the greatest miracle and turn-around in all of history.

When He resurrected to life, He immediately began working on the second biggest thing to ever happen in the world – the launching of the Church.

Jesus had been talking about it all along. He made a prophecy and promise: “I will build my Church and the gates of hell will not stand against it.” What did that mean? What does that mean? What does that look like? Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection meant more than just a ticket to heaven – when we think that, we become self-absorbed people who never live up to our calling and privilege.

Before Jesus returned to heaven, He told His disciples to go to Jerusalem’s Upper Room and wait there until the Holy Spirit came and filled them with wisdom and power to fulfill the mission. They did that, and what happened after 40 days is what we call the Day of Pentecost. It was the birthday of the Church. The Greek word translated “church” means a “called out group of people.”

The word Church is a translation of biblical words: the Hebrew word qahal, and the Greek word ekklesia, both of which mean “gathering of people or community” for worship. It was first applied to the people of Israel whom God called into existence. Jesus now meant that the ekklesia would follow Him. They would be His vehicle for calling the world to Himself, to receive the gift of life His sacrifice has provided for them – freedom from sin and then a welcome into the transforming life of following Him.

The church would love others as Jesus loved them. They would assume the issues and interests of the community. They would welcome anyone and everyone into their ranks. They would care for the people. And they did. Spiritually, emotionally, physically, and even financially they cared for the people who came to them. They did it so well that Acts 2 records that there was no one in need. Everyone had their needs met.

This group of people was so aligned with their founder that they literally turned their world upside down. In a crazy, conflicted, and divided world, they experienced unity. The unity was a defining characteristic, so much so that it is mentioned three times in the first six chapters of Acts. Unity was certainly not experienced before the resurrection and Pentecost. Now they were filled and controlled by the Spirit of God. Their love for God and each other was transformational.

They were incredibly contagious. They loved well and consistently. They were generous. Wherever they saw a need, they stepped up and stepped in to meet it. It was infectious. These two characteristics were the face of the church: tremendous love and overwhelming generosity. It was their brand.

Maybe you didn’t want to join them because you didn’t believe the same as they did, If you didn’t join them, you DID admire and respect them. You wanted them to be your friends. You wanted to hire them or work for them. You wanted them for neighbors. You wanted your kids to marry them.

They did. And little by little they changed the world. Not just for them, but for us. The church changed their lives and destinies. Easter launched the Church of Jesus Christ. He DID build His Church, and it will never fail. YOU get to be part.