What a privilege it is to live in the four nations of our territory where we can freely celebrate Easter with a long weekend and remember the significance of this most holy Christian festival. But maybe your celebrations might be like some of my Easter weekends: just a blur of activity, chocolate and hot cross buns. Maybe the movement and transitions of Easter are not marked as distinctly as they should be, the time is not taken to slow down and intentionally sit in the significance of the events remembered. This Easter, I invite you to enter each day and contemplate the enormity of a gift freely given to humanity—the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
The biblical events leading up to what is our Easter Friday read in the gospels like the powers of darkness were in full control and calling the shots. But it soon becomes clear that Christ himself set in place the timeline of events and paced out the steps predicted hundreds of years before in the Old Testament: from riding a donkey into Jerusalem, the intersection of Passover feast, to the necessity of Christ’s suffering. For example, the Jewish leadership at the time did not want to kill Jesus on a feast day, but they were not in control. Even the timing of Jesus’ betrayal by Judas was set in motion when Jesus announced to the disciples in the upper room that one of them would betray him.
In Major Mat Badger’s article on page 24, he highlights the fact that Jesus went to the cross of his own free will. He hung suspended between heaven and earth not held by the nails driven into his hands, but willingly staying the course and suffering in our place so that we would not have to experience the complete separation from God that Christ experienced on the cross.
This Easter, as we take the time to pause, to remember, to lament and contemplate the enormity of his sacrifice, we can only be eternally grateful that Christ made the way for us to be reconciled to our Creator.
Please note: The name of this territorial magazine is changing. Watch out for the May edition.
Vivienne Hill, Editor
The magazine can be viewed either as an online magazine on Issuu, or the bulk of the articles, news, and shorter reflections (Grace Notes) have been added into their various sections.
I welcome your feedback and suggestions, and also your photos, letters, crafts and stories. Please email: [email protected]
General’s Easter Message: ‘It is finished’ (John 19:30), a reflection on the completion of Christ’s mission of redemption.
From Death Daily to New Life Every Day
Celebrating 140 Years in New Zealand: Punching Above Our Weight Since 1883
Family Legacy of Faith: Stella Derham from Linwood Corps shares the stability of family and faith in her life.
Movers and Makers: Amplify Tonga and Samoa
An Easter Meditation: Where Prophecy Meets Physics
Salvation Army Response to Cyclone Gabrielle
War Cry in History
An Army of Salvation in World War I
Movie: Thirteen Lives
TV: MH370: The Plane That Disappeared
Book: Art + Faith