The Bodily Resurrection of Jesus Remains Our Great Glory
No event in human history compares to this one! The Bodily Resurrection of Jesus Christ towers over history like a mighty Colossus. The women and the apostles who first witnessed this event were so overwhelmed they could barely speak.
Yet, I have to confess that I have heard many Easter sermons that seem to reflect little of the sheer grandeur that this mighty work of God so fully deserves. Too frequently on this day, I have heard what I call “Mary had a little Lamb” Easter sermons – sermons that play around with the ideas of blooming flowers and budding trees as if such Spring phenomena could come anywhere close to picturing the Easter Glory.
So the Bible spends close to 1600 years getting Judea and the whole world ready for the Death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ, then some stumble-bum preacher so hopelessly misses the key MOMENT that half the congregation goes to sleep and the other half plays games on their cell-phones. So the preacher is “making his living”, fulfilling his obligation to fill an hour with “morals and meditations of Spring” with a touch of Resurrection thrown in for good measure.
Thank God for a growing number of Pastors who are an exception to such boring Easter fare. You can hear their tapes on line if your own pastor is missing out here.
Yes, Thank God for such preachers! The Holy Spirit has used all of scripture to capture their hearts and minds with the ASTOUNDING WONDER of our Savior’s rising from the tomb to celebrate the NEW LIFE He was creating on that day. Satan had been holding all of mankind in the horrid grip of his sinful misery, but Jesus broke his grip, stripped him of his evil power and set us free to rejoice in our newly created liberty from all of the Devil’s illusions.
And don’t miss the picture that Psalm 2 preserves for us! Psalm 2:4 informs us, “He who sits in the Heavens laughs; the Lord holds them in derision.” We have good reason to believe that God often has to laugh at Satan and sinners who believe they have pulled a fast one on God. But this has to be one of the capitol spots for God’s humor.
Yes, I am convinced that when the angel sat on the stone that he had just rolled away, God was convulsing in laughter. He is saying to Himself, “Those suckers think they got me this time!” No Way! It may be borderline blasphemous to suggest this, but I am convinced that God was rolling in the grass, laughing so hard he could not get his breath. Psalm 2:4 proves it!
Now, because Jesus died to cover our sins and rose to demonstrate our freedom from all sin, the Savior is at last free to RE-CREATE US! The Holy Spirit is now free to invade our hearts and fill our imagination with the beauty of NEW LIFE in Christ. “For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace.”
Then, building on this ASTOUNDING WONDER of the RESURRECTION, pastors can use all of the Epistles to demonstrate the glorious life-style that flows right out of that RESURRECTION. This is the grand source of our freedom, showing us a whole new life-style built on the Savior’s own triumphant pattern and leading us at last to the MARRIAGE SUPPER OF THE LAMB and the delightful life that can be built on that model.
This morning in the St. Louis Post Dispatch, I read the dreadful story of a teen-ager who had just overdosed with heroin and Xanax. WHY? We can be quite sure he had never heard the good news of the bodily RESURRECTION of Jesus Christ!! What a pleasure and privilege we have to spread this good news, to get into the business of rescuing those who have not heard this wonderful good news.
It happened in history! Let’s spread it!