I'll never make any apologies for encouraging Christians to live cross-centered lives, or leaders to lead in gospel-centered ways. Christ's substitutionary death on the cross which reconciled us to God will always be central to our faith.
And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied. (1 Cor. 15:17-19)
Still, Thomas Schreiner makes this insightful comment:
The central event in the gospel is the death and resurrection of Jesus. These two actions belong closely together (Rom 4:25; 8:34; 1 Cor 15:3-5; 2 Cor. 5:15; Phil 3:10; 1Thess 4:14), but the weight lies on the former."
So as we gather in a little over a month to observe Holy Week, culminating in the celebration of Easter, or Resurrection Sunday, let's not forget to remind people why the death that preceded the resurrection was so significant — Jesus fully endured the wrath of God as our substitute, and we no longer need fear God's wrath or punishment (Rom. 5:1-8).
Easter All Year Round
Having made that clarification, the triumphant victory of the crucified Savior over the grave is something Christians should celebrate the whole year, not just at Easter. We worship a risen Savior!
Because we tend to sing a high percentage of songs about the resurrection on Easter Sunday, I thought I'd take the opportunity to suggest some songs I've become aware of that highlight the resurrection, especially in view of the cross. Before you read this list, you might want to check out the other songs I suggested in 2006 and 2007.
Happy Day - Tim Hughes
Uptempo celebration of Christ's victory over the grave.
The greatest day in history
Death is beaten, you have rescued me
Sing it out, Jesus is alive
His Name is Jesus - Judah Groveman
All Hail the Power with a new chorus.
His name is Jesus, risen Lamb for sinners slain.