With Easter coming up this week it can be so easy to get lost in the pastel colored Easter eggs and taking pictures with the Easter bunny. In our every increasing secular world it’s so important to focus on the real meaning of Easter.
The true meaning of Easter can get lost in the shuffle so as I focus my heart and mind on why Easter is a time of celebration I invite you to take this journey through the Bible with me to rediscover and refresh your heart and soul on Christ.
Promises of the Coming Messiah on the O.T.
Often in the American Christian church the fact that the Old Testament is critical to our understanding of our Christian walk is completely lost. Many view it as an ancient document full of law and judgement and doesn’t have a lot of bearing upon our current lives.
But this is so far from the truth. In trying to understand what is so special about Easter and Christ’s Resurrection we must first start with the Old Testament and the promises and prophecies of the coming Messiah.
One of the most beautiful things about the Old Testament is how it points continually to Christ. God promised in the Old Testament that the Messiah would come and redeem Israel and be our future hope and salvation. To better understand why Christ’s coming and Resurrection is significant we must first look at the prophecies concerning his coming to earth to die.
It has been said that as many as 300 prophecies concerning Christ’s 1st coming (the virgin birth) and 2nd coming (when he comes back at the end of the Earth) exist in Scripture. Many of these concern his being born as a man and dying as a suffering servant.
God revels in the O.T. that Christ would be born of a virgin.
Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. ~ Isaiah 7:14
This verse clearly points to the virgin birth and the coming Messiah. The Jews did not fully understand what this means or what this would look like but looking back through the lens of the New Testament we can clearly see the promise of the coming Messiah born of a virgin. Next, we see that this man born of a virgin would be firmly established in the line of David.
And your house and your kingdom shall be made sure forever before me. Your throne will be established forever. ~2 Samuel 7:6
This promise was given to David that his line would continue on eternally. As we shall see later this was fulfilled in the New Testament through the lineage of Mary and Joseph. Christ’s throne will be established forever because he will live on eternally through his Resurrection to rule. Christ died but was raised to new life to establish His kingdom forever. Countless verses also speak of the Messiah’s lineage in David including Psalm 89:3-4, Ezekial 37:24-28, and Psalm 132:11.
In the Psalm’s God speaks of setting His Son as ruler,
‘As for me, I have set my kind on Zion, on my holy hill.’ I will tell of the decree: The Lord said to me, ‘You are my son; today I have begotten you. Ask of me, and I will make the nations your heritage, and the ends of the earth your possession. ~Psalm 2: 6-8
What beautiful language of a loving Father to His Son. The Lord promises to make the coming Messiah the ruler of this world and King of the coming Kingdom.
Psalm 22 lays out the Resurrection of the coming Messiah. The opening lines of the Psalm “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” are the very words uttered by the lips of Christ right before His own death. He was referring back to this Psalm in the final moments of His life. Read through the entire Psalm, you will be amazed at the prophecy and accuracy.
For dogs encompass me; a company of evildoers encircles me; they have pierced my hands and feet-I can count all my bones- they stare and gloat over me; they divide my garments among them, and for my clothing they cast lots. ~Psalm 22: 16-18.
The writer of this Psalm did not fully understand what these words meant or how they would actually be played out in the years to come. But with amazing accuracy the Lord lays out exactly what would happen to Christ as he hung on the cross. The Lord established these prophecies hundreds of years before Christ was born.
The Lord revealed to the Jews how Christ would be born, where he would be born, what he came to do, that he would die and that his Kingdom would be established forever.
I hope that this gave you a small taste of the grand prophecies made in the O.T. The Old Testament is a wonderfully rich story of Christ. Yes, Christ is revealed to us in the O.T. By knowing and understand who Christ is from the New Testament we can look back and see all of the rich imagery and prophecies made about the coming Messiah.
Reading these passages should start to get you excited about Easter. God was so infinite in His wisdom that he foretold how his son would be born and how his son would die on the cross. This is incredible to me! Most of these passages were written at least 700 years before Christ came to Earth!
700 years. Wow. This makes me realize the depth of God’s understanding and His wisdom. Will you join me in worshiping and celebrating our King this week. Tomorrow we will look at these beautiful promises in the Old Testament being revealed in the New Testament!
Read more from this series:
Promises of the Coming Messiah: A Journey Through the Old Testament
Fulfillment of the Messiah: A Journey Through The New Testament
Why Easter is a Time of Celebration: The Resurrection
Why Easter is a Time of Celebration: Future Promises