“He was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all” (Isaiah 53:5-6).

Easter is a time when we think particularly about the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is the time we remember that the Lord Jesus died on the cross of Calvary and that on the third day when His disciples went to the tomb where they had laid Him, they found the tomb empty: Christ had risen from the dead.

These verses from the book of Isaiah tell us the message of Easter. They speak very clearly about the death of the Lord Jesus and the reason for His death.

1. The message of Easter is that we are all lost in sin until we are saved.

The Bible says, “We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way.” This means that every one of us here on earth has gone away from the Lord and fallen into sin. It means that from the moment we were born we have been sinners and we have lived lives of sin. The Bible says, “Even from birth the wicked go astray; from the womb they are wayward and speak lies” (Ps. 58:3). We were born with sin in our hearts and we have followed the way of sin all our lives. We have strayed away from God and from His holy laws, we have chosen the way of sin and rebellion rather than the way of God. The Bible makes it clear that sin is found in every part of man: our thoughts are sinful thoughts, our words are sinful words, our actions are sinful actions. This is how the Bible describes those who are unsaved:

“There is no one righteous, not even one;

There is no one who understands, no one who seeks God.

All have turned away, they have together become worthless;

There is no one who does good, not even one.

Their throats are open graves; their tongues practice deceit.

The poison of vipers is on their lips.

Their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness.

Their feet are swift to shed blood;

ruin and misery marks their ways, and the way of peace they do not know.

There is no fear of God before their eyes” (Rom. 3:10-18).

If you are an unsaved person, then you need to understand that you are a sinner in the sight of God and that your condition before God is a serious one. You are a sinner before God and in rebellion against Him.

2. The message of Easter is that God demands a penalty from those who have fallen into sin.

The Bible tells us that God is holy and just and that He hates sin and will punish sin justly. The Bible says,

“You are not a God who takes pleasure in evil; with you the wicked cannot dwell.

The arrogant cannot stand in your presence; you hate all who do wrong.

You destroy those who tell lies; bloodthirsty and deceitful men the Lord abhors.

The wicked and those who love violence his soul hates.

On the wicked he will rain fiery coals and burning sulphur;

A scorching wind will be their lot” (Ps. 5:4-6; Ps. 11:5-6).

These are serious words. They are found in the Bible, which is God’s word; they are part of God’s revelation to us. The person who thinks that his sin is not a serious matter in the sight of God is deceiving himself. God hates sin and God judges sin. This is something the Bible teaches very clearly.

3. The message of Easter is that Christ Jesus died on the cross of Calvary to save sinners from their sin.

“He was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5). This verse tells us that the reason why Jesus was nailed to the cross was because of our sins; the reason He died was because of our iniquities. It tells us that the only way we can have peace with God is through Him, and the only way we can be healed from sin and its effects is through His death. It tells us that the reason why Jesus died was to pay the penalty for the sins of His people: He was punished for our sake and in our place.

The death of Jesus Christ was an amazing event. He was the Son of God who came to earth to call sinners to repentance, He was completely perfect and sinless. Even His enemies could find no charge of sin against Him. And yet He died the death of criminal, the kind of death that was reserved for those who had committed really terrible crimes. Why? The reason is that He was dying in the place of those who have committed terrible sins against God; He died to pay their penalty and to cleanse them from their sins and to rescue them from slavery to sin and to remove the anger of God that was upon them. This is why Christ died.

4. The message of Easter is that the only way to be saved from our sins is to repent and believe in Christ.

God is holy and just and He demands that a penalty must be paid if a person is to be forgiven his sins and enter heaven. If your sins have not been paid for then they have not been forgiven, and if they have not been forgiven then they are still upon you and you will be judged for your sins on the day Christ returns. There is only one way to have your sins forgiven: it is to repent and believe in Christ. Jesus Himself said, “The time has come, the kingdom of God is near. Repent and believe the good news!” (Mark 1:15).

This is what you need to do: to repent of your sins and to come to Christ in faith. This is the only means of salvation from your sins.

To repent means to make a break with sin and to keep on making a break with sin throughout your life. It means to resolve to leave all sin because God hates all sin and it means to fight sin and to put sin to death.

To come to Christ in faith means to trust Christ alone for your salvation. It means that you must not trust in who you are or what you have done to get you into heaven. To trust in Christ means you must understand that nothing you can do in your own strength can save you, and that only Christ can save you from your sin. It means you come to Christ and cry out to Him for the forgiveness of your sins and cast yourself upon Him completely. It means you trust Him alone, it means you understand that if He does not save you then you have no hope of getting saved; it means that you understand He is your only hope of entering heaven.

Seek the Lord while he may be found; call on him while he is near.

Let the wicked forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts.

Let him turn to the Lord, and he will have mercy on him,

And to our God, for he will freely pardon (Isaiah 55:6-7).

This is the promise of the Bible to all who are in their sins. Come to Him today and you will have forgiveness for your sins.