RESURRECTION: THE VERY HEART OF CHRISTIAN BELIEF:
This is the day the Lord has made and we shall adequately make good use of it.
The Old Testament books prophesied the Birth, Crucifixion, death and burial of Christ Jesus, most especially Psalm 22 such as the Messiah’s feet and hands being pierced Ps.22:16; cf. Jn.20:25; His bone not being broken unlike the usual breaking of bone on legs of any crucified individual. Ps.22:17; cf. Jn.19:33 and the casting of lots for his clothes. Ps.22:18; cf. Matt.27:35
Seven hundred years before the birth of the Messiah, Isaiah prophesied this in Isaiah 53. David, though the King of the kingdom of God’s people on earth, would not have spoken about himself when he said “For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol; Nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo decay.” Ps. 16:10.
I consider today as a great opportunity given to us all in accordance with Romans 8:28 “all things working for the good of those who loves God who are called according to His purpose”. What was meant for sadness God is turning it for our good and for his glory is not a new word to us if we are truly believers.
Take a deep thought at this moment.
Is there any individual reading this, whom anybody may have offended through any means or you presume, out of our judgmental attitude, might have offended you, could you take this given day as an opportunity to forgive?
If you have done that, we will move on.
Too often we interpret the scriptures literally when it favours us towards elevating sufferings.
Permit me to draw your attention to that same scripture we believe in and claim passages richly engraved with promises of God over us in every ramification, also have boldly written metaphors of reminders to us all each time of our lives.
Crucial questions comes to mind at such moments when our loved one exit from earth, most especially people whose memories are part of our lives.
One question is clearly obvious in the mind of most present in funerals. “What if it was me”?
I want to dwell on this question for a while. What if it was me? Would this be the true end or is there a resurrection that I might attain or miss?
The line that cuts Christian belief into the obit of uniqueness not shared by any other belief in human existence is the belief in resurrection of the Body, Soul and Spirit.
The closing of Psalm 22:31 is a conclusive seal to the defeat of evil and death. “that he has done it.” Done what? salvaged every living from what every living were cursed with and that which was activated by the fall of the first in the garden of God.
The defeat of death was a desire that people of old spoke about, waited for it and was thereafter fulfilled in Christ Jesus.
Let us consider a statement by Job of the Old Testament, which alongside with Jesus’s declaration to Martha of the New Testament. Job 14: 24 “That with an iron stylus and lead They were engraved in the rock forever! 25 “As for me, I know that my Redeemer lives, And at the last He will take His stand on the earth. 26 “Even after my skin is destroyed, Yet from my flesh I shall see God;…
John 11: 24 Martha replied, “I know he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.” 25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me will live, even though he dies. 26 And everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?”…
These songs of believers cannot be neglected in our transforming cultural and societal values. Can you sing same about your faith and believe in Christ Jesus?
- What did Job strongly state he knows?
- That His Redeemer lives, Jesus said to Martha “I AM the Resurrection and Life” Job believe in the Redeemer to raise him up when he stands on earth after his body (Job’s) is destroyed. Jesus confirms Job’s faith by declaring He lives even in death. Job believed in resurrection.
- What did Martha claim she knew?
- Her brother will rise again in the last days, similar to Job’s confession but lacks the assurance that the Redeemer was standing before her. While Job knew and believes strongly that when the Redeemer stands on earth and that resurrection is His. Is it possible Job have resurrected at Christ resurrection, for the Gospel recorded “at that moment the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth quaked and the rocks were split. The tombs broke open, and the bodies of many saints who had fallen asleep were raised. After Jesus’ resurrection, when they had come out of the tombs, they entered the holy city and appeared to many people.…” (Matt. 27:51-53) Have you considered how interesting Psalm 24 connects to this?
- What is Martha being asked to believe?
- It is not in the resurrection. It is not just a future promise but to all who believe in Christ Jesus as the Redeemer are never to die.
Look at Christ Jesus attesting in an eschatological context. John 11:25-26
- John 6:39 “And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that I shall lose none of all those He has given Me, but raise them up at the last day.”
- John 5:21 “For just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, so also the Son gives life to whom He wishes.”
- John 5:26 “For as the Father has life in Himself, so also He has granted the Son to have life in Himself.”
Conclusion: “Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead” (Isaiah 26:19). Revelation 1:18 did justices to this very prophecy of Isaiah “the Living One. I was dead, and behold, now I am alive forever and ever! And I hold the keys of Death and of Hades (Rev.1:18)
The Question at heart is what do you believe?
Do you believe in life after death and your place in the Kingdom of God now and to come? We must live in obedience to the Word for therein is our hope sealed with the promise to them that abide in Christ Jesus.
Prayer: May God bless you with a heart of passion that responds to the call of reconciliation as we take heed in our ways to reflect the love of Christ and His will towards our earth in Christ Jesus’ name Amen.