The Significance Of The Resurrection
The Following Blog Post is written by Brandon Adent:
Popular references to Easter abound these days. Bunny-shaped chocolate is on sale at the grocery store, alongside the plastic ribbon grass that seems to cling to every crevice in the house.
Most people don’t know where the bunny came from. Or why we color eggs, hide then, and hunt for them. Springy colors make sense to us… it’s the time of year where the dark of winter surrenders to the light of the spring.
We love spring. Especially in Bellingham. The return of the longer days and warmth of the sun give us a lot of joy.
And yet, there is a greater source of joy. The book of John talks about Jesus as the Light of the World, which shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome.
And on the day that Christ bodily rose from the grave, the Light stomped the head of the Darkness into the ground.
PAID IN FULL
To put the events of Good Friday (the day Jesus, the Christ, was crucified) and Easter Sunday into modern terms, let’s frame the discussion in terms familiar to many of us.
Say you’re a college student without money for anything but Ramen noodles (10 for a dollar, in case anyone is curious), and a friend and family member offers to take you to Costco to get anything you want. You go to the store on your shopping spree, and your friend or family member pays the bill.
In order to exit the store, you must stand in line ready to show your receipt to an employee as proof that you’ve paid for everything in your cart. Once the employee marks your receipt as valid and complete, you are free to go about the rest of your business.
Similarly, paying the bill is a bit like Good Friday. With His blood, Christ paid for the wrongdoings and offenses of all who would trust in Him, and gives them His perfect standing in exchange.
Christ’s resurrection is like the receipt. By His resurrection, we know that our sin has actually been dealt with, for death cannot hold the sinless.
Moreover, the use of the receipt goes beyond departure of the store. Say your friend bought you a flat-screen TV, and when you plugged it in at your apartment or house, it didn’t work. The receipt gives you the assurance that you will be adequately cared for until you are satisfied with your purchase.
If you are in Christ, He has paid for your soul with His blood. And His resurrection is the proof-of-purchase. You have been adopted into His family (Gal 3, Rom 7), and there is nothing that can separate you from His love (Rom 8).
Because of this assurance, you can live courageously in the new life that you have in the knowledge that His grace is sufficient for you.
NEW LIFE IS YOURS
Because of the assurance that your sentence has been paid in full, you have a guarantee of new life in Christ.
You are a new creation; the old has passed away and the new has come (2 Cor. 5.17). You have been raised from death by the same power that raised Christ from the dead (Eph 5.4-6).
This means you actually can live differently! God has changed you from the core of your being, and is slowly molding you into Christ-likeness. Sure, we’ll struggle with sin, fear, guilt, and shame. But He who began a good work in you will be faithful to complete it. (Philippians 1.6)
DEATH IS AS GOOD AS DEAD
Your newness isn’t just relegated to your soul. Because of the resurrection, you have assurance of bodily resurrection, just as Christ was raised.
Paul addresses this very topic in 1 Corinthians 15. Amid disputes of whether the dead will rise again, Paul repeatedly and emphatically states that if Christ Himself was not raised from the dead, that we have no hope either in this life or the next.
Thankfully, Christ has been raised from death, showing that He indeed possesses power over it. As death could not hold Him, neither will it hold you.
This means that you don’t need to fear death. Certainly, the prospect is unnerving. But if we know that we are Christ’s in both life and death, and that He is sovereign over both, we don’t need to live in fear or anxiety over what happen today or tomorrow.
CELEBRATE THE GOD WHO LIVES
This next section may seem a bit odd: I’m going to quote a Christmas song.
Without Easter, there is no Christmas. If Christ had not come to live perfectly, die sacrificially, and rise triumphantly, He would not have come. Charles Wesley knew this when he penned the great hymn “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing!”
Hail the Heav’n born Prince of Peace
Hail the Son of Righteousness
Light and life to all He brings
Risen with healing in His wings
Mild He lays His glory by
Born that man no more may die
Born to raise the sons of Earth
Born to give them second birth
The appropriate response to the risen King is worship. We bow our lives to Him, confessing our need and despising our old ways in the light of His grace.
This response should resound in every area of our lives. One ways we respond is by gathering corporately to hear what He has done and respond in gratitude in prayer and song. This is a weekly celebration, not a one time event, to serve as a frequent and tangible reminder one what He has done for every people of every tribe, tongue, and nation. But Easter provides us a particularly special occasion to gather and remember what God has done in us and what He means to do through us.
If you would, join us as we gather this Easter Sunday in the name of the resurrected Jesus.