Have you ever needed to be rescued? Ever need someone to come to your defense? Ever needed someone to be your advocate?
When I was growing up our neighborhood, like any other, had a bully – he was about four years older than me. And for whatever reason the summer when I was nine he decided to make my life miserable. It was really miserable. Nothing worked. My dad talked to his dad and it just got worse. One day I was walking down to my friend Mike’s house – just three houses away – and the bully caught me. By the time I made it to Mike’s I had a bloody nose and was pretty roughed up. Mike’s older brother Louie came to the door. Louie would become one of the best athletes our neighborhood had seen – a two sport star – football and wrestling – but this particular summer he was thirteen just like the bully. “Stevie, what the heck happened to you?” I told him the story – I told him about the whole summer of suffering. Next thing I know Louie’s running out the door. He comes back a little bit later and tells me the bully will never bother me again. He told me if anyone ever bothered me to come tell him. My first experience of a saviour was a kid named Louie Matteo. He was the big brother I never had. No one ever bothered me again.
The Bible tells us we have a Big Brother. The Bible also tells us we have a powerful enemy. But he is not all-powerful. In fact, the Bible reveals to us that Satan is a defeated enemy. The Apostle John says: “The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil.” Paul writes of Christ, “He disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame by triumphing over them in him.”
Jesus disarmed and destroyed Satan, taking away from him the power and fear of death by triumphing over him by His cross and resurrection and opening to you (and me) the gateway to eternal life. Our stronger, older Brother is both deliverer and Saviour. So, the Apostle John will write, “But to all who believed Him and accepted Him, He gave the right to become children of God. They are reborn – not with a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan, but a birth that comes from God.” (John 1.12-13)
Friends, may your Lenten observation and Easter celebration lead you back to the One who has loved you and fought for you and saved you for Himself.