Saturday, April 15, 2017
UV 2254/10000 The Resurrection
Command therefore that the sepulchre be made sure until the third day, lest his disciples come by night, and steal him away, and say unto the people, He is risen from the dead: so the last error shall be worse than the first.
Matthew 27 v 64
As the Pharisees feared the second fact or truth of the resurrection from the dead by Jesus has even greater power and impact than the first truth that He surrendered Himself willingly to death to pay the wages that would otherwise have to be paid by every human being. Jesus reserved the greatest miracle for Himself – to resurrect Himself from the dead as it was the will of the Father. He had resurrected others from death like Lazarus of Bethany by the self -same power. But to command His own being to be resurrected was the ultimate exercise of His divine authority. The sin of the world that weighed Him down on the cross could not hold Him prisoner of death.
Jesus in His bodily form before death on the cross did His ministry only locally in Israel. But His resurrection with a glorified body restored Him to be the ruler of Heaven and earth. The ministry of deliverance that He did in Israel of healing, deliverance from demons and preaching the kingdom of God He now does on a universal and global scale. Neither time nor space can confine or constrain Him anymore. He could descend to the depths of hell to deliver the dead of the past. He ascended to heaven to report the fulfilment of His mission on earth. His power of resurrection is now at work in and among us who believe He died for our sins and rose again on the third day and now rules at the right hand of the Father’s throne in Heaven. No grave, however secured or deadly situation can lock us in. Like Jesus we might undergo great troubles but in the end will come out squeaking clean and even more strong and powerful.
With the resurrection power of Jesus now accessible and available to us, no situation is hopeless, nothing is impossible, transformation of our sinful hearts is possible. Acceptance of the death of Jesus on the cross for us makes us righteous from an eternal perspective for His righteousness becomes ours. Acceptance of the resurrection of Jesus makes it possible for us to be righteous in real time. We can rejoice for our physical death is no longer a full stop to our lives but just a comma , a momentary pause in our journey into eternity. The two truths together takes the sting out not only of death, but of shame, defeat, failure, sorrows, pain, suffering and misery. Belief in the resurrection of Jesus and our own appropriation by faith of the same power will make us not only resilient as we have the “bounce back” power in any situation but it makes us triumphant. Jesus became in this one act the one and only invincible hero and conqueror of death itself. Our hope of our own resurrection makes us also more than any earthly king, conqueror or hero. The enemies of Jesus continued to conspire against Him even after taking His life and yet their plans and plots were thwarted. No grave, however secured or deadly situation can lock us in. Like Jesus we might undergo great troubles but in the end will come out squeaking clean and even more strong and powerful.
Prateep V Philip