On this Easter season, remember Humanity’s hope for the future is based only on Christ’s resurrection.
Luke 24:6, “He is not here, for He is risen”.
The resurrection of Christ is the only hope of all human beings.
Apart from the resurrection of Christ, which is verifiable and attestable by several convincing proofs, which we will discuss below, there is no hope for human suffering and misery of death. When you and I think about it, Humanity’s hope for the future indeed hinges on the resurrection of Christ on the first Easter Sunday.
It is not just the incarnation and living of Christ on this earth which is a historical fact; it is not just the sufferings and death of Christ on the cross, it is not just the death and burial of Christ, but it is the resurrection of Christ on the third day is the reason for Christianity and planting of Christian churches all around the world. Even though Christ predicted the formation of the church before His death, the church actually came into existence on the day of Pentecost after the verification by several eyewitnesses about the resurrection and ascension of Christ.
The Old Testament prophecies clearly prophesied the incarnation, living of Christ, sufferings of Christ, and the death of Christ. There are hundreds of prophecies fulfilled when Christ came, lived and died, and was buried for the remission of our sins. The Bible says these were in accordance with God’s eternal plan for our salvation from sin. God, in His perfect love had placed an eternal even before the foundation of the world for our salvation in and through Christ Jesus. However, although there were hundreds of prophecies about Christ, His sufferings, and death, which were literally fulfilled with pinpoint accuracies, the Old Testament Scripture is primarily, commonly, and purposefully seems to be silent about the bodily resurrection of Christ. Of course, there were hints about Messiah’s resurrection like Isaiah 53:10-12, Psalm 16, and Psalm 22. Though the first prophecy regarding the seed of the woman who will crush the head of Satan was given at the beginning of human history after the sin and fall of our first parent in Genesis 3:15, how this crushing of the head of Satan will happen was not explained. It remained largely a mystery not revealed by God in a literal fashion that even Satan was apparently blinded by the soon coming resurrection of Christ after His death, though he knew about the death of the Messiah. Bible says Satan entered Juda’s heart (one of the disciples of Jesus) to betray Jesus for crucifixion. It says, “Then Satan entered Judas, called Iscariot, one of the Twelve.” Satan thought the death and burial would be the end of Christ, the promised Messiah. It will soon be over by the death of Jesus. Thank the fact that Old Testament literature remained largely kept this as a mystery or secret for Humanity’s salvation. If Christ did not die and if he had not been buried and, more importantly, resurrected from the dead, Humanity won’t have any hope beyond the grave. God kept certain mysteries intact until their fulfillment, and now the resurrection of Christ is clearly revealed and seen as crushing the head of Satan. The plans of the Devil or the plans of the wicked people couldn’t restrain the implementation of God’s eternal plan for the salvation of Humanity. Peter declared this after two weeks of Christ’s resurrection in front of the Jewish congregation. Listen to the way he summarized God’s eternal plan in the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. “This man (referring to Jesus Christ) was handed over to you by God’s deliberate plan and foreknowledge, and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross. But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death because death couldn’t keep its hold on him.”
God’s eternal plan was the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ.
The death, burial, and resurrection of Christ was God’s eternal plan for our salvation. Peter said to them you, with the help of wicked men, put Jesus to death by nailing him to the cross. But listen, Jesus was handed over to them “by God’s deliberate plan and foreknowledge…. and God raised him from the dead because it was impossible for death to hold on him.” Jesus is the Son of God. It is impossible for the death to hold on to Christ Jesus because He is God.
The New Testament looks back on all the prophecies given and makes this declaration of how Jesus crushed the head of Satan by his death, burial, and resurrection. “When you were dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave all our sins, having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.” (Colossians 2:13-15).
By the resurrection of Christ, God disarmed the powers and authorities. God canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness by our sins. These charges stood against and continually condemned us. But Jesus has taken the charges and condemnation against us. How? By nailing those charges and condemnations, satan had against us on His cross when he died. He delivered us from the charges and penalties of our sins. Through the bodily resurrection of Christ, Satan and his army were disarmed, the Bible declares. God made a public spectacle of them by disarming their powers. Jesus Christ, by His resurrection, crushed the head of Satan who was the deceiver from the very dawn of human history. Hallelujah to God and Christ. Christ’s resurrection from the dead by the exertions of the power of God for Humanity’s hope and salvation is the message of Easter.
The empty tomb is the most compelling proof of Christ’s resurrection.
The most compelling proof of the bodily resurrection of Christ is the empty tomb still verifiable near Golgotha, about 96 meters
from where Jesus Christ was crucified. Jesus’s tomb is still open and visible, and verifiable when all other religious gurus tombs remain closed. When you look at the tomb, the front has a quotation from the Bible in Luke 24:6, “He is not here, for He is risen.” These were the words of the angels to the women who went to the tomb early in the morning with spices. Think about it! Christ’s is the only tomb on the face of the earth that is still open, and the body is missing.
Bible says in Matthew 27:60 says that a “large stone” was rolled “against the door of the tomb.” This stone that was used to close the tomb was very heavy and weighed over 2 tons. The women would not be able to move the stone. Such a heavy tombstone can be moved only by 4 or 5 people. In addition, Matthew 27:66 reports Roman Government sealed the tomb, which means they made a compound around it and fastened the tomb and the location with cords, and sealed it. No one could break the seal of the Roman Empire without an immediate death penalty. On top of all these, Matthew 27:65-66 says, based on the request of the Jews, a guard was placed around the tomb of Jesus so that nobody would come and steal the body from it. The Roman guard was a sixteen men unit. If one of the guard members fell asleep, he would be beaten and burned with his own clothes was the severe punishment. In addition, not the only one would be executed, the whole 16 man guard unit would be executed if only one of the members fell asleep when they were on duty. With this type of tight security, no one would be able to attempt to take or steal the body of Christ from the tomb.
When Mary and other women came to the tomb, the historical account says, they saw an empty tomb. Peter and John witnessed an empty tomb when they came and looked, the disciples came and witnessed the empty tomb. The Roman Soldiers saw an empty tomb. The Jews saw an empty tomb. In a matter of a few weeks, Peter preached to thousands of people about the resurrection of Christ, and 3000 people believed in the message, and they became believers in Christ in one preaching. During the early witnessing work of the disciples, nobody disputed the empty tomb. The empty tomb was verifiable and true then and now. In the book of Acts, where the birth and early growth of the church are described in detail, after hearing the preachings and witnessings of the disciples, nobody ever disputed the empty tomb. When they witnessed the resurrection of Jesus Christ, no one ever came to them with the proof that the tomb of Jesus had his body in it. In addition, no one ever was able to produce any evidence or proof of the body of Jesus Christ.
You see, the resurrection of Jesus Christ is a historically verifiable truth, and no one so far has been able to refute it.
The secret of the boldness of the disciples is yet another one.
The disciples of Jesus were perplexed and frightened on Friday night when Jesus was crucified. The historical records in John 20:19 say about the mental condition of the disciples this way. “When the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jewish leaders, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” They were so frightened of their own lives, and they were together in fear of Jewish leaders, and the doors were locked. This is the time one of the several post-resurrection appearances happened. Jesus said to them, “Peace be with you!”.
After they were convinced about the resurrection of Jesus Christ by seeing the empty tomb and post-resurrection appearances, they were bold enough to stand on the temple courts preaching Jesus Christ is the Lord of all and only believing in Christ can save them from their sins and grant them eternal life.
The change in the mental condition of the disciples from confused, afraid, and frightened to enormous courage and boldness to preach about Christ’s resurrection right in front of the face of the Jewish leaders and Roman authorities proves the truth of Christ’s resurrection from the dead. You see, these cowards became flaming missionaries and evangelists who radically changed the whole world with the Gospel of Christ. Do you know what made this significant change in them? They all had seen the risen Christ, and they spent all the rest of their lives running around the whole world by saying to the world, ‘Jesus is alive, and He is the savior and no other.’
If Christ did not rise from the dead, why has nobody so far produced any evidence of His body or even bones?
Two centuries passed, and 2000 years have gone by; from the very first day until now, the empty tomb is the silent witness of Christ’s resurrection. The courage and boldness of His disciples and their willingness to give their life for the truth of the resurrection of Christ is another proof of the resurrection of Christ from the dead. For the last 2000 years, no one ever produced proof of his body, bones or organs from anywhere. When the disciples challenged the Jews with their preaching, even in the first few weeks of His resurrection, no one ever said they knew where the body of Christ was. No one ever refuted their arguments for Christ’s resurrection. No one ever challenged their statement of Christ’s resurrection.
If Christ has not risen from the dead, where is His body? Why the tomb was empty after 3 days though it was sealed and guarded by the then world empire – the powerful Roman Government?
In fact, Jesus rose as He Himself exactly predicted
Jesus, Himself said several times in His teachings before His crucifixion that he would rise again. “He said to them, “The Son of Man is going to be delivered into the hands of men. They will kill him, and after three days, he will rise.” (Mark recorded in 9:31). “Jesus took the Twelve aside and told them, “We are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written by the prophets about the Son of Man will be fulfilled. He will be delivered over to the Gentiles. They will mock him, insult him and spit on him; they will flog him and kill him. On the third day, he will rise again.” (Luke recorded in 18:31-31). “When they came together in Galilee, he said to them, “The Son of Man is going to be delivered into the hands of men. They will kill him, and on the third day, he will be raised to life.” And the disciples were filled with grief.” (Matthew recorded in 17:22-23).
Jesus is the source of resurrection and life.
Jesus said at the tomb of Lazarus this statement, “I am the resurrection and the life.” (John 11:25). When He said, He is the resurrection and the life He stated the truth that He is the source of both – resurrection and life. Apart from Him, we have no hope beyond the grave. He is the source of our hope beyond death. And He is the source of life- All life comes from Him. Our breath comes from Him, and our eternal life in heaven also comes from Him only. After the above statement, Jesus said another very important statement. “The one who believes in me will live, even though they
die.” No one ever made statements like this. He was saying those who believe in Him as their savior, even though they die, will live again. Why? He is, in fact, the source of resurrection and life.
Jesus is the source of life is the reason that death could not hold him, and you see, death had no power over Him. Bible says in 1 Corinthians 15:54 (c):57, “Death has been swallowed up in victory.”
“Where, O death, is your victory?
Where, O death, is your sting?”
The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
You see, your victory over death comes from Him. Jesus is the source of your life and resurrection. Jesus gives resurrection and eternal life in heaven to those who believe in Him as their savior. Having received the life from Him, we share his victory over death; we overcome death. Those who believe in Christ Jesus as the savior and ask him for eternal life, will personally experience resurrection with glorified bodies after the death.
Christ is the first fruit, the way or the pathfinder for those who would come to Him.
This is the message of Easter. Bible says in 1 Corinthians 15:20 that Christ is risen from the dead, and He became the first fruit for many who will die. The first fruit gives hope and anticipation for many more fruits. In other words, Jesus Christ is the way or pathfinder for more resurrections. Jesus conquered death, and He shared His way to live after death. He promises resurrected eternal life for all those who would believe in Him.
Did you pray to Jesus for the forgiveness of your sins and resurrection as of yet? You know for sure one day you will die, don’t you? Nobody knows the day and hour of their death. You don’t either. Death is certain. Are you prepared for life after death?
This Easter again reminds you that you can get salvation, forgiveness, and eternal life in Christ Jesus. Would you come to Him today in prayer? It does not matter how far you are away from Him now. The love and compassion of Christ are bidding you now. He will embrace you, and grant His unconditional love, forgiveness, and eternal security and safety. Christ promises even if you die, you will live again. As the Holy Spirit is working in your heart at this unique time, accept Christ as your savior now, I plead with you.
Pray after me: God, I know you sent your only begotten son Jesus Christ to die in my place for my sins. I am sorry I am a sinner. I repent all my sins. I pray Jesus to come to my heart and save me and grant me eternal life today. Amen.”
If you prayed this prayer, I solemnly declare on the authority of the truth of the Bible that you now became a child of God, and the LORD granted you salvation, the forgiveness of all sins, and eternal life. Please start attending a Bible teaching and preaching church in your area to grow in the Lord. God had wonderful plans in store for you.
Kindly visit www.teachbible.org, go to the contact tab, and send me a note. I will be thrilled to hear from you. Thank you.