“I passed on to you what was most important and what had also been passed on to me. Christ died for our sins, just as the Scriptures said. He was buried, and he was raised from the dead on the third day, just as the Scriptures said.” – 1 Corinthian 15:3-4
Fortunately, we know the whole story, but have you ever considered what the disciples must have felt on Good Friday? They had given up everything to follow Jesus. They had left their jobs and their families. They had completely changed their ways of life in order to follow Him. The journey had never been easy, but they trusted the one whom they were following. So it must have been hard to imagine the grief and fear that they must have experienced on Good Friday. Saturday probably wasn’t any better. Today, we celebrate Good Friday as good because of what happened on Easter Sunday.
1 Corinthians 15 is a beautiful reminder of the resurrection and all that it accomplished. Paul understood the essential nature of the resurrection. He knew that if Jesus didn’t arise that first Easter morning, nothing really matters. Absolutely nothing—has any meaning at all. Any good work we accomplish will either decay or quickly become obsolete. When our life has passed, any impact we leave will be washed away instantly. Paul said it this way: “And if Christ has not been raised, then your faith is useless and you are still guilty of your sins. In that case, all who have died believing in Christ are lost! And if our hope in Christ is only for this life, we are more to be pitied than anyone in the world.” (1 Corinthians 15:17-19.
But because Christ has indeed risen, we have every reason to live well, to worship God, and to savor his love, mercy and blessings every day. Because those things are only a taste of what is to come. Because of the resurrection, our lives have purpose beyond the eighty-or-so years we spend on earth. And why we are living on this earth we have hope. 1 Peter 1:3-4 (NIV) says, “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you.”
We have hope that our mistakes and sins can be forgiven. There is hope that we can have joy, peace, assurance, and security in the midst of the despair of this age. And we have a connection and a confidence with the living God. We can move past our past, we can start fresh and finish strong.
- Jesus’ resurrection proves that He is God and gives us power over sin and death. Agree or disagree and why?
- Does the resurrection give you an unshakable hope and confidence that we can overcome our past and our fear of starting fresh?