Jesus Christ rose from the dead, just as He promised. Early on that Sunday morning at the tomb where He was buried, there was a great earthquake. The earthquake was God’s way of drawing attention to the momentous event. An angel of the Lord came down from heaven and rolled aside the stone and sat on it. He did not roll away the stone to let Jesus out; he rolled the stone away so others could have access to the tomb and see that Jesus was not there; that He had indeed risen from the dead.
Then the angel spoke to the women who had come to the tomb with spices they had prepared and said, “Don’t be afraid,” (Mathew 28:5). This is the first lesson, “don’t be afraid.” The truth concerning the Resurrection brings joy, not fear. Whenever Christians begin to experience fear in their lives, they simply need to remember the empty tomb. Men bury their dead, but only God can resurrect. 2 Corinthians 1:9 says, “…we learned not to rely on ourselves, but on God who can raise the dead.” Deity is manifest in all aspects of the Resurrection. The Holy Spirit has a share in the Resurrection of Christ, therefore He must be God. “The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you. And just as he raised Christ from the dead, he will give life to your mortal body by this same Spirit living within you,” (Romans 8:11).
Then the angel said, “He isn’t here! He has been raised from the dead, just as He said it would happen,” (Matthew 28:6). The second lesson is Jesus is not dead! He is not to be looked for among the dead. Jesus is alive and with His people. He reigns in the hearts of Christians and He is the head of His church. If you are looking for Jesus, then look for Him among the living. Expect Him to be active in the world and in the church. Look for signs of His power as these signs are all around you.
Next, the angel said, “Come, see…..,” (Matthew 28:6). The women were able to see for themselves that the tomb was empty. The tomb was empty then, and it is still empty today. The Resurrection of Jesus remains a historical fact and one that is central to Christian history. The church is built upon the Resurrection of Jesus; without the Resurrection there would be no Christian church today. The Resurrection of Jesus is unique among all other religions. Other religions teach strong moral ethics, ideas of a “paradise,” and an “afterlife.” Other religions have their holy scriptures. But only Christianity has a God who became human, willingly died for His people and was raised again in power and glory to rule His church forever!
Lastly, the angel said, “Go quickly and tell,” (Matthew 28:7). The women were to spread the joy of the Resurrection. Christians too, are to spread the wonderful news of the Resurrection of Jesus. Jesus rose from the dead, just as He promised. “Don’t you remember what He told you back in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be betrayed into the hands of sinful men and be crucified, and that He would rise again the third day? Then they remembered that he had said this. So they rushed back to tell His eleven disciples—and everyone else—what had happened,” (Luke 24: 6-9).
In Scripture, Jesus perfectly fulfilled his predictions that He would be resurrected from the dead, which became the strongest proof of His claims to be God. “All right,” Jesus replied, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up,” (John 2:19). Jesus was not referring to the temple made of stone, but to His own body. These words became meaningful to His disciples after His Resurrection. “The Father loves me because I lay down my life that I may have it back again,” (John 10:17). Jesus’ Resurrection is part of God’s plan for the salvation of the world and, like everything, is under God’s control. “I am the resurrection and the life. Those who believe in me, even though they die like everyone else, will live again. They are given eternal life for believing in me and will never perish,” (John 11:25-26). Jesus has power over life and death, as well as the power to forgive sins. Jesus is the Creator of life, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me,” (John 14:6). He who is life certainly has the ability to restore life. Those who believe in Jesus Christ have a spiritual life that death cannot conquer or diminish in any way. To those who believe, the Resurrection is a miraculous assurance and great certainty that they have eternal life. “In just a little while the world will not see me again, but you will. For I will live again and you will too,” (John 14:19). Christians don’t have to know the future in order to have faith in God. We have to have faith in God in order to be secure about our future.
To unbelievers, the Resurrection of Jesus is difficult to comprehend. Many believe it to be a story made up by men and impossible to believe. Some take the time to read the Bible, study the facts, yet still find themselves puzzled about what actually happened. The only way to believe in the Resurrection and to accept it as fact is to have your own personal encounter with Jesus Christ. It is only as you commit yourself to Jesus and devote your life to serving Him that you will begin to fully comprehend the reality of His presence living within you.
The most precious truth about the Resurrection and one that gives Christians the most joy is that we can be sure of our resurrection because Jesus was resurrected. For Christians, death is not the end of life; we have a future life, an eternal life in the presence of the Lord. The same power that brought Jesus back to life is available to bring the “spiritually dead” selves of believers back to life. The Resurrection of Jesus is the church’s witness to the unbelieving world that Jesus is more than just a good man and a great teacher; He is, in fact, the Son of God.
Life Application Study Bible – New Living Translation
All the Miracles of the Bible by Lockyer
All the Messianic Prophecies of the Bible by Lockyer
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