JESUS CHRIST IS RISEN
1. The angel that spoke of the resurrection of Christ was described: “His countenance was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow” Matt. 28:3. Hear his words, speaking to the women, “fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus which was crucified. He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. And go quickly, and tell his disciples that he is risen from the dead; and behold, he goeth before you into Galilee; there shall ye see him: Lo, I have told you”. Matt. 28:5-7.
Four amazing things here:
(i) The place where Christ was laid was empty. (ii) The countenance of the angel was like lightning, raiment white as snow. (iii) Christ, risen from the dead and gone into Galilee, where he would be seen. (iv) The angel emphatically stated: “lo I have told you”. Matt. 28:7 Therefore, there should be no iota of doubt about the resurrection of Christ. Not many Christians have discovered that one of the most powerful weapons of Satan in fighting against people who hear the word of God is to create doubts in their hearts to win them to his side.
Our Lord spoke of how he would resurrect the third day: “And he began to teach them that the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders, and of the chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again.” Mark 8:31
2. Significantly the resurrection of Christ has brought us justification in the same way his death has fetched us forgiveness of our sins: “Who was delivered for our offences and was raised again for our justification”. Rom. 4:25. It is a great thing to be justified by Christ before God. That is our assurance for heaven because the Saviour has justified us, has qualified us to enter heaven.
By the resurrection of Christ, we shall resurrect unto life. It is important to know that since Christ has risen from the dead, he shall make us overcome death and make us resurrect unto life: “Some shall resurrect unto life and others unto death.” John 5:29. Many people believe different idols that can take them to heaven. Some put their trusts in angels as their saviour. Some believe that their sacrifices to idols would lead them to heaven. It is only the resurrection of Christ that has brought to us the full hope of salvation. Some rejoice in their idolatry and filthiness at second burial during Easter, the celebrants believing that second burial would take them and the dead to heaven.
The Sadducees are ignorant about resurrection. Their question revealed their mind. Jesus answered them as they asked: Therefore in resurrection whose wife of them is she? for seven had her to wife. Jesus answered: “But they which shall be accounted worthy to obtain that world, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry nor are given in marriage” Luke 20:33,35.
So, by his resurrection Jesus has conquered death for us and this physical body shall change: “For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.” 1 Cor. 15:53.
3. Millions of people celebrate the Easter, the Resurrection of Christ yearly all over the world. Among the Christian songs all over the world is: “Up from the grave he arose With a mighty triumph O’er His foes He arose victor from the dark domain, And He lives forever with His saints to reign. He arose! He arose! Hallelujah! Christ arose!” That speaks of how jubilantly we should worship Christ because of the victory he has over death.
It is painful to note that as we jubilate at the resurrection of Jesus, we forget to tell others the story. That is the Good News. And we have neglected that. When Mary Magdalene knew of the resurrection of Christ, she quickly told Peter and John who ran speedily to the empty tomb. Christians owe it a great duty to preach Christ and his resurrection to the world, especially at Easter.
We need to tell others of the redemption work Christ has done at his resurrection: “Christ hath redeemed us” Praise to His name! Praise Him, ye angels in glory! “Christ hath redeemed us bearing our shame: Tell out the wonderful story!”
Christ himself after His resurrection gave his command: “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature” Mark 16:15. How can we jubilate at the resurrection of Christ at Easter and refuse to carry out His instruction and still continue in sins? If therefore he says, “depart from me, I know you not;” would it then be enough to tell him, “I jubilated during the Easter celebrations at thy resurrection?
Today, millions of people demonstrate a high degree of worldliness during the season we call Easter. They are deeply in sins of fornication and adultery; they are deeply in sins of alcoholism and smoking. My question: Why is alcoholism common at festivals? It ought not to be so even among those that go to church at Easter. Resurrection of our Lord should be celebrated in holiness, fear of God and in great repentance of sins. But instead some go into crimes at Easter and snatch people’s cars, break into houses and go away with valuable items and sums of money. They eventually go to hotels, restaurants, drinking palours with girls and women of mean characters, all full of immorality, male and female alike. Fightings on streets, in drinking palours and restaurants end up in police stations with visible wounds all over the head and the face. Strangely some of the drunkards cannot trace back the roads to their homes.
Therefore at Easter we ought to be:
(i) Sober and repentant (ii) We ought to jubilate and rejoice in worshipping Christ, the risen saviour. (iii) We should teach more about the word of God and tell more about the Resurrection of Jesus. (iv) We should allow ourselves to be filled with the Holy Spirit not with wine in order to allow the word of God dwell richly in us and bear fruit. (v) Preachers should never teach their flock that they can continue in alcoholism but should drink moderately. Some of the addicts will come to have a hand shake with you for a sermon well delivered, after service but their blood would be required of you (Ezekiel 3:18) if they die in their sins even if it is at Easter period.
Risen Life Evangelical Church (Inc.)
29th March, 2018.