On Sunday morning, April 4, 2021, the Rev. Raphael Warnock stood in front of his congregation and delivered an Easter sermon like he’d done for the past decade-and-a-half. His message didn’t exactly turn any heads that day.
However, the tweet he’d sent out earlier that morning captured the attention of our nation.
Before Warnock stepped into the pulpit of Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta – the spiritual home of Martin Luther King, Jr. – the freshly minted Senator from the state of Georgia sent the following tweet to his 960,000 followers:
“The meaning of Easter is more transcendent than the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Whether you are Christian or not, through a commitment to helping others we are able to save ourselves.”
Understandably, Rev. Warnock was immediately rebuked by his fellow pastors…and politicians. His theology was denounced as both inane and heretical. Shortly after the public backlash, Rev. Warnock deleted his unbiblical tweet.
Let’s get two things straight: first, there is nothing – nothing in this universe – more transcendent than the resurrection of Jesus Christ. His death and bodily resurrection changes everything! Second, there is no way we are able to save ourselves. If we could save ourselves, Jesus wouldn’t have had to die on the cross in the first place!
The message of Easter is a simple one. So is its meaning. It’s hard to imagine getting either so terribly wrong – and by a pastor, no less – but there is too much riding on the resurrection to tolerate such errant views. We can’t afford to mess this one up!
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