IT’S RESURRECTION SUNDAY!
What does the resurrection mean for humanity? For us? What happened spiritually?
28 In the way of righteousness there is life;
along that path is immortality.
Jesus took our sin and its punishment to the grave with Him. His body died just like the rest of humanity. The difference is that He had drunk the cup of God’s wrath and it all went with Him to the grave. Don’t you know Satan was shocked and appalled when Christ walked into his domain and demanded the keys to death and hell! John gives this account of his encounter with the risen LORD:
17 When I saw him, I fell at his feet as though dead. Then he placed his right hand on me and said: “Do not be afraid. I am the First and the Last. 18 I am the Living One; I was dead, and now look, I am alive for ever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and Hades [hell]. Revelation 1:17-18
Jesus had kept this part of the Plan a secret until He had accomplished it. Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians:
7 No, we declare God’s wisdom, a mystery that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began. 8 None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.
Now comes the inconceivable part: “before time began.” Why would God go to so much trouble if He knew how much trouble we would be? It was all part of the “made in His image” where we are given the opportunity and privilege to chose to love Him and serve Him–and reign with Him. God is Omnipresent, which means that He is everywhere at once. He fills the universe both in space and in time. He is in all times, which means that He knows the “beginning and the end” (Rev. 22:13), yet chooses to live in the present with us. He is ever-present. Choosing to acknowledge Him pleases Him immensely!
When Jesus’ spirit entered His body and he awakened in that tomb, I wonder where He went. The angel rolled the stone away to show that He wasn’t in the tomb:
2 There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. 3 His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. 4 The guards were so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men.
5 The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. 6 He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. Matthew 28:2-6
For your listening pleasure: Rise Again – Dallas Holm
My favorite passage is Philippians 2:5-11. It tells the entire story in song format. Many wonder if it was one of the first Christian hymns. It is essentially the song, “Lord, I Lift Your Name on High:
You came from heaven to earth to show the way – being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.
From the earth to the cross my debt to pay – And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death — even death on a cross!
From the cross to the grave, from the grave to the sky – Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should [shall] bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge/confess that Jesus Christ is LORD,
Lord, I lift your name on high – to the glory of God the Father.
Because of the Resurrection, we can lift the name of Jesus on high. LET’S DO IT!
Dear LORD Jesus, thank You for having Your plan and working Your plan so that I could have eternal life with You. Thank You for entering my heart and life and giving me everlasting life immediately! From now on, it just gets better and better as I move through this life and eventually to a new and better life with You. May we remember those who have already gone ahead of us, and may we patiently await Your Return. Receive Your church’s praise today, O LORD, amen.