Saturday, April 4, 2015

He Is Risen Indeed!

Pastor Stephen Nash's column on The Daily Rant hits the nail on the head.  Nothing could stop Jesus from coming out of the grave. He is risen and because of it we have everlasting life with Him!

Death Could Not Hold Him

This week, we have reason to celebrate! From a cold, dark cave to the father’s right hand! Of all the major religions of the world, Christianity basis its claims on the acceptance of the Resurrection of its Founder!
“If Easter be not true, then faith must mount on broken wings, then hope no more immortal spring, then love must lose her mighty urge, life proves a phantom and a dirge, if Easter be not true!” — Unknown
Can a woman stop the birth of her baby? Of course not! If that stone door was not removed by the angel, the sun, moon and stars would have demanded His release! You cannot keep God in the grave! Jesus was deity as well as human and you cannot kill God!
Jesus possesses the office of Eternal Priest – “A Priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek” (Heb. 6:20). Eternal King – “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever” (Ps. 45). He is our Eternal Shepherd (Heb. 13:20). Death could not hold Him because of the things to follow. He would reside at the Father’s right hand as our Great High Priest!
If Jesus did not rise from the tomb there would be no assurance of our resurrection (1 Cor. 15:17). There would be no certainty of being made right with God (Rom. 4:25). “He was raised for our justification!” There would be no advocate in heaven for we who believe (1 John2:1). “If anyone sins, we have an advocate.” We have a Lawyer who is also our Judge!
The Ignorance of People Cannot Darken the Light. “The poor have the gospel preached to them and they are the ones who are rich in faith.” “The people who sat in darkness saw a great light.” The light cannot be extinguished. “The wealthy and the elite shall be humbled and the great light.” The light cannot be extinguished. “The wealthy and the elite shall be humbled and the lowly shall be exalted.” Earth and its inequities; heaven and its equalities! The evil influences of this world shall NOT defeat His kingdom! They can take our money; they can take our belongings; they can even take our lives; BUT THEY CANNOT TAKE OUR FAITH and OUR ETERNITY WITH GOD!
Remember, the Gospels do NOT explain the Resurrection; the Resurrection explain the Gospels. Belief in the Resurrection is NOT an appendage to the Christian faith, it IS the Christian faith!  Our faith is in a Living God who has made us alive in Christ Jesus. As struggling sinners, we have escaped the bonds of guilt, shame and Satan himself. Ps. 124:7 – “My soul has escaped as a bird from the snare of the fowler; the snare is broken and I have escaped!”
The struggling Christian shall NOT be held by trials, temptations, affliction and depression.   “For many are the afflictions of the righteous…” Our bodies shall NOT be held in the grave. “For the dead in Christ shall rise first, then we who are alive shall join…” All creation will burst forth with resurrection life when He gives the signal.   Nothing can stop it!
There is no limit to the mighty power and endless grace of Jesus Christ! He opens the prisons of justice and death with infinite ease. He will redeem not only the soul, but the body as well. Because He Lives, We Live Also!
Have you lost a loved one recently? Jesus temporarily lost Lazarus, but what did He do? Is there sickness in your family? He heals all manner of diseases or He waits to receive anyone who departs from this world. Are you struggling financially? Our God lives and He is rich! He will provide all our needs! Are you sad and depressed? He lives as our Comforter, Counselor and Companion!
Your life and testimony is perhaps the greatest proof of the Resurrection! It transformed Peter’s courage. It transformed James’ faith. It transformed Thomas’ doubt. It transformed Saul into Paul! Our Lord’s resurrection transformed my selfishness, rebelliousness, ignorance, hopelessness and stubbornness and made a new creation that will see the risen face of Jesus some day. Because of Good Friday we can look back and not be afraid. Because of the Resurrection we can look ahead and not be afraid!

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