Let us level set this discussion on the Resurrection. We need to first ask, “what is the Resurrection?” To one it represents the finished work of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, on the cross to atone for our sins (1 Corinthians 15.3-4).
To another, it represents the extent of the love of God for mankind (1 John 4.10). To yet another, it represents our path to life everlasting (1 John 5.11). Yet, when we recognize that the Resurrection does not refer to a single event that culminated in an empty tomb, we begin to accept that the Resurrection provides evidence that the One who was anointed to redeem us is the key to restoring our relationship with God (John 14.6).
The Resurrection is a blessed assurance that God is faithful to His children.
This assurance is vital to our own faith in Him through Jesus Christ. He is the One who volunteered in Heaven to come to this earth to rescue us from our own sinful nature.
Our God is holy, and we are not. I know my ways. I know my thoughts. I know my propensity to sin. I know that this is not acceptable to the same holy God with whom I am expected to have this loving relationship forever.
The Resurrection means that God, in His infinite wisdom, knew that we would fail and that we would sin. He knew that in order to restore the relationship He once enjoyed with mankind in the cool of the evening in the garden of Eden, He would have to intervene. He had to prevent us from slipping into the lifestyle that leads to everlasting destruction.
So, He sent His Son, Jesus Christ, to suffer the consequences of our sins, once and for all. That was His death on the cross. But He did not stop there! He rose from the dead. He took the sting out of death so that we might have hope. That is the blessed assurance of eternal life with the Father.
Now I know with certainty that there is still life and it is everlasting. I know with certainty that even if this body should suffer during my Earthly lifetime, I still have hope for a new body in Christ. I know with certainty that this life would not be all in vain.
So, when the vicissitudes of this life come upon us, we can still say, according to the old hymn, “because He lives, I can face tomorrow!” When we are asked, “where is your God in all this?” When we feel isolated for weeks or months, when we are wheeled into surgery without family or friends to comfort us, we can still look to the Resurrection with the eschatological hope.
That hope is still Emmanuel, God with us.
Dr. Ann-Marie Juwah, MAR DMin., a fellow servant of God in Christ Jesus, is the founder of Restoration2Eternity with Christ, dba The Word Restores. She is an ordained Elder through the Church of God and has been given the gift to reach the lost, to speak words of hope, healing, and comfort into their lives, and to demonstrate the love of God to the weary. Dr. Juwah holds a Doctor of Ministry (DMin) from Ashland Theological Seminary with a focus on Spiritual Formation devoted to leading God’s people into a lifestyle of Christian discipleship according to the Great Commission.