Easter weekend is my favorite time of the year because it provides an occasion for focused reflection on the historical events that are at the heart of the gospel and the Christian faith—the death and resurrection of Jesus by the Father through the Spirit (cf. Rom 8:11).
Paul in 1 Corinthians 15 describes these events as being of “first importance”:
Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, 2 and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. 3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. 6 Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. 7 Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. 8 Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me.
Notice that it is the gospel of the death and resurrection of Jesus in which we as Christians stand (and apart from which we fall) and by which we continue to be saved as we hold fast to these central truths.
This weekend as you take some extra time to read through the Gospel accounts (perhaps using the Parallel Passages and Harmonies tool) and mediate on other portions of Scripture relating to the death and resurrection of Jesus, you may have some time to read some reflections by others. If you’re looking for reading material, here is a list of some of the books available for Logos that may provide you with some fruitful mediation:
- The Cross and Salvation: The Doctrine of Salvation by Bruce A. Demarest [currently 40% off using coupon code MME8]
- Six Hours One Friday by Max Lucado
- The Murder of Jesus by John F. MacArthur Jr.
- The Passion Conspiracy by Randy Weiss
- The Crises of the Christ by G. Campbell Morgan
- The Actuality of Atonement by Colin E. Gunton
- The Divine Substitute: The Atonement in the Bible and History by Ian J. Shaw and Brian H. Edwards
- The Satisfaction of Christ: Studies in the Atonement Arthur Walkington Pink
- Studies in the Atonement by Dr. Robert A. Morey
- The Radical Cross: Living the Passion of Christ by A. W. Tozer
- The Seven Sayings of the Saviour on the Cross by Arthur W. Pink
- Who Put Jesus on the Cross? by A. W. Tozer
- Crucify Him: A Lawyer Looks at the Trial of Jesus by Dale Foreman
- The Death of Death in the Death of Christ by John Owen
- The Trial and Death of Jesus Christ: A Devotional History of Our Lord’s Passion by James Stalker
- Fifty Reasons Why Jesus Came to Die by John Piper
- Jesus’ Resurrection: Fact or Figment? A Debate between William Lane Craig and Gerd Lüdemann
- Resurrection, ed. Stanley E. Porter, Michael A. Hayes and David Tombs
- The Resurrection: The Unopened Gift by Gerard Chrispin
There are a handful of other titles on Pre-Pub right now that deal with these important events. But these will have to wait for a future Easter weekend’s reading.
- Paternoster Atonement Collection (5 Vols.)
- The Doctrine of the Atonement, As Taught by Christ Himself by George Smeaton
- The Doctrine of the Atonement, As Taught by the Apostles by George Smeaton
- Cries from the Cross: A Journey into the Heart of Jesus by Erwin Lutzer
Finally, we just put Robert Candlish’s classic exposition of 1 Corinthians 15, Life in a Risen Saviour, on Community Pricing. This gem is well worth picking up—especially at the $5 price tag that it will probably go for.