“Then the angel spoke to the women. ‘Don’t be afraid!’ he said. ‘I know you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He isn’t here! He has been raised from the dead, just as he said would happen. Come, see where his body was lying. And now, go quickly and tell his disciples he has been raised from the dead, and he is going ahead of you into Galilee. You will see him there. Remember, I have told you’” (Matthew 28:5-7 NLV).
Impacting the world
No other event in the history of mankind has impacted the world so much as the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. It caused a handful of fishermen, farmers, and a tax collector to absolutely turn the world upside down. We call it “good” news, but it is actually incredibly great news as the cornerstone of the entire structure of Christianity: a risen Savior and Lord!
“But the fact is that Christ has been raised from the dead. He has become the first of a great harvest of those who will be raised to life again” (1 Corinthians 15:20 NLT).
Think about this for a moment. If the Lord Jesus Christ was not raised from the dead, then what we believe by faith would be a dead faith indeed. Yet the Son of God, the Savior of the world, is raised by the Father from death to life and that truth has changed the world. What we need to remember is that the disciples denied and deserted Jesus when they came to arrest him in the Garden of Gethsemane. They ran and hid in fear for their own lives. What they believed in died hanging on a cross on the hill, Golgotha. So what happened? What caused them to boldly preach the “incredibly great news” of the gospel at the risk of death, which most of them received? They were witnesses to the truth of Christ’s resurrection. They knew the resurrection was true and were willing to die for that truth.
Resurrection power today
Because Jesus is raised, we too shall be raised on the last day. Because the tomb of Jesus is empty, our hope is full of:
Does this describe your life today? To be sure, we have been promised storms in this life and storms we get. But in those storms of life we have been given the power from our prince to weather all of them regardless of how strong their winds blow. Easter is a reminder that, as Christians, we are to be living in the truth that the same power that raised Jesus from death to life is the same power at work in us right now. And that power is as infinite as it is irresistible. All the Roman guard could not keep Jesus in the tomb. All the Jewish religious leadership could not keep Jesus in the tomb. Death itself could not keep Jesus in the tomb; and so in losing its fight against Jesus, our Lord has become the death of death.
Power to testify
The stone was supernaturally rolled away from the entrance of the tomb not so Jesus could get out, but so we could get in and testify to the divine power that emptied the tomb. “I pray that you will begin to understand the incredible greatness of his power for us who believe him. This is the same power that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms” (Ephesians 1:19, 20 NLV). Remember the same power which raised the head of our faith, raises the members too.
Let me encourage you this Easter season to pause and reflect upon that power that dwells inside of you. Because Jesus was the death of death, God forbid that we should ever go back to our dead works of service to the self. Rather, let us live our lives completely for the glory of the one who purchased it with his blood on Golgotha’s hill. The tomb is empty, so our heart doesn’t have to be. He is risen! He is risen, indeed!
This is the Gospel. This is grace for your race. Never forget that… Amen!
Tommy Boland is Senior Pastor of Cross Community Church in Deerfield Beach, FL. He blogs regularly at tommyboland.com.