Resurrection: Have you wondered about the resurrection of Jesus Christ? How does the resurrection bring you hope? This article by counselor Lucy Ann Moll, a doctoral student in Biblical Counseling, appeared first at her website and is used with permission.
Hope is something God knows all of us needs. Aren’t we in a world of hurt? From hearing of terrorist bombings to learning of a neighbor’s divorce, you and I are tempted to become discouraged, aren’t we?
Thank God for Easter and the hope the resurrection brings!
While Holy Thursday recalls the Last Supper and Good Friday remembers the crucifixion and death of Christ, Easter Sunday celebrates his resurrection.
Here are 5 reasons the resurrection brings hope to followers of Jesus:
1. The Resurrection Means We’re Justified
He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification. Romans 4:25 (ESV)
Incredible, isn’t it? To imagine that Jesus dare to die and rise again—for us, for me, for you.
By his resurrection, all believers in Jesus are justified. To be justified means “to be put right with.” According to Scripture, all of us are “objects of wrath” because we break God’s law and thus deserve eternal death. But God has a glorious and gracious plan of redemption.
God laid our punishment on Jesus on the cross. Why? So we could be justified before him. The resurrection proves that God accepted Jesus’ sacrifice for sin.
2. The Resurrection Defeated Death
For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him. Romans 6:9 (ESV)
Yes, death is the just punishment for sin. But wonderfully, Jesus rose from the dead because the grave could not hold him. Death had no mastery over him. Therefore, you and I need not fear death. We also do not need to fear eternal punishment.
We are truly loved.
3. The Resurrection Means Union with Jesus
Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. Romans 6:8 (ESV)
God loves us higher and wider and deeper than we can possibly imagine.
By our faith, you and I received the righteousness of Christ because we are united to him. This means that when God looks at us, he does not see our unrighteousness, but the righteousness of Christ.
Now, as new creations in Christ, in-dwelt with the Holy Spirit, we can walk in the way of love.
4. The Resurrection Gives Living Hope
In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. 1 Peter 1:3 (ESV)
We Christ-followers have great hope. Not a false hope. Not well wishes. Rather, we have a trustworthy hope based on faith. We have been justified before God. We are no longer his enemies headed for hell.
Rather, we are blessed, chosen, forgiven, redeemed, and sealed by the Holy Spirit, guaranteeing eternal life. And we can now live according to our identity as children of God. As the apostle Paul wrote to the believers in Colossae,
Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. Colossians 3:1-4 (ESV)
5. The Resurrection Means We’ll Be Raised Too
For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive. 1 Cor. 15:21–22 (ESV)
Jesus is described in Scripture as the first-fruits of the resurrection from the dead. This signals that his resurrection is a precursor to that of all believers.
Christians will enjoy the resurrected life just like Christ did, with glorified bodies raised in power (1 Corinthians 15:42–44). We suffer in this life with pain and illnesses. Indeed, in the counseling office, we comfort those who have been sinned against as well as those who are grieving.
But in the life to come, you and I will not suffer. Truly we will enjoy our life in Christ forever and ever.
I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this? John 11:25–26 (ESV)
He has risen. He has risen indeed.