Some may ask why the resurrection is essential to our faith. Why can’t we just believe Jesus was a good teacher and follow His teachings? Why does it matter whether He had divine power?
If there was no resurrection, what do we have beyond this life?
If there was no resurrection, our Savior has no power to save.
If there was no resurrection, being a Christian is downright crazy.
And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied.”
~ 1 Corinthians 15:17-19 ESV
Jesus’ disciples walked with Him for 3 years. Show-stopping miracles were a regularity. The blind saw. The deaf heard. The lame walked. Demons fled. The disciples bore intimate witness to His divine power.
And yet, as Jesus was led away by an angry mob, they ran for their lives.
The disciples, like most humans, feared death. Like the rest of the Jews, the disciples believed Jesus was going to restore the kingdom of Israel to earthly power. When He died, their misguided hopes died with Him.
Dark despair hung over the disciples as Jesus’ body reposed in the shadowy tomb.
Sunday morning, the sun crept over the horizon, softening the earth with its gentle warmth and light. At that same golden moment, a brighter, more glorious Son, rose from the realm of death.
Hope crushed despair.
Love conquered death.
Jesus overpowered Satan.
After Jesus’ resurrection, we see the apostles boldy preaching the gospel in the face of inevitable persecution. From the depths of prison to a dusty, blood-strewn road, their voices rose in praise. Death no longer frightened them. Fear no longer controlled them.
What made them embrace death without fear? What made them choose lives of sacrifice?
The Empty Tomb.
The Living Savior.
When Jesus revealed His resurrected self to the apostles, all doubt vanished. Why fear death when your King has demonstrated His power to vanquish it?
The resurrection is crucial.
Without the resurrection, we have no hope.
Without hope, joy is lost.
Without joy, life is meaningless.
But Jesus has risen, hope is assured, and our lives overflow with joy inexpressible.
Our hope is not in this world or this life. Our living hope is the resurrected Christ. We take up our cross daily, crucifying the old man of sin, dying to self until he returns or we go home.
Today, and every day for the rest of your life, treasure this gift from God. We have an unshakeable hope because Jesus rose and Jesus lives.