Do Not Be Amazed… He Has Risen!
“...And the good pleasure of the Lord will prosper in His hand”

By Jon W. Quinn
"And entering the tomb, they saw a young man sitting at the right, wearing a white robe; and they were amazed. And he said to them, 'Do not be amazed; you are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who has been crucified. He has risen; He is not here; behold, here is the place where they laid Him." (Mark 16:5,6).

There are four different accounts of the resurrection of Jesus presented in the Bible. They are different because they were written by different people expressing different viewpoints and even emphasizing different facts about the same event. They are not different because they contradict. They do not. They do, however, compliment one another and thus present the fuller account when taken together.

There are several interesting points to consider. First, the resurrection of Jesus in the sealed tomb is not described. The last we see of Him is that His dead body is buried in the tomb and the tomb is sealed. The next we see of Him is that He is alive. We also note that Jesus manifested Himself to disciples who were not at all expecting His resurrection. We find that angels were seen before the Lord Himself was seen and that when the Lord did appear He did so to groups as well as individuals; to those who were trusting as well as to those who were skeptical.

But what does the resurrection of Jesus have to do with us today? The answer is plenty!

The Resurrection Was Foretold

"His grave was assigned with wicked men, Yet He was with a rich man in His death...He will see His offspring, He will prolong His days, And the good pleasure of the Lord will prosper in His hand...My Servant will justify many, As He will bear their iniquities. Therefore I will allot Him a portion with the great...Because He poured Himself out unto death" (Isaiah 53:9-12).

Ancient prophecies had foretold of both the death as well as the resurrection of Jesus. He would die, and yet His days would be prolonged. He would be buried, and yet He would prosper. The resurrection of Jesus verifies unto us His identity as the one who would bear our sins. God would not abandon His "soul to Sheol; neither allow Thy Holy One to undergo decay" (Psalm 16:7-11). The New Testament tell us that Jesus "was declared to be the Son of God with power by the resurrection from the dead" (Romans 1:4). Jesus is the promised one of God, the Savior and redeemer! He is the fulfillment of these prophecies and God's eternal purpose to bring about human redemption.

The Resurrection Was Promised By Jesus
"From that time Jesus Christ began to show His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem, and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised up on the third day" (Matthew 16:21). Jesus knew His purpose. The crucifixion did not catch Him by surprise. And He knew as well that He would not remain in the ground. His earlier promises concerning the resurrection tended to be more obscure. Instead of understanding them right away, His disciples would remember them after the deed was done. Jesus on one occasion stood in the temple and said, "Destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it up." He was referring to the temple of His body and it was only after His resurrection that His disciples comprehended what He had meant (John 2:19-22).

But as time continued, Jesus got more and more plain about it. Think about this! If His promise had failed and His body had remained in the tomb, the broken and discouraged disciples would have returned home and His movement would have only amounted to a brief, all-but-forgotten footnote in history. Who would have gone on to give their lives in behalf of a "savior" who could not even save Himself and who had promised "life" but was now dead?

The Resurrection Defeated Satan
"And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; He shall bruise you on the head, and you shall bruise Him on the heel" (Genesis 3:16). Satan is referred to as a liar and a destroyer. He is obviously powerful and cunning. But since the resurrection, he is also defeated. His destiny is sure, if there ever was any doubt, it was removed when he failed to keep Jesus dead thus demonstrating that he cannot avert God's purpose. To those who give their lives to Satan as their master, do not expect any reward or kindness from him because you have so faithfully served him. Do not view him as having some sort of control in hell. Jesus taught that eternal fire was "prepared for the devil and his angels" (Matthew 25:41).
Hell is not Satan's domain, it is his punishment! He has lost!

The Resurrection is the Foundation of Our Hope
"For the love of Christ controls us, having concluded this, that one died for all, therefore all died; and He died for all, that they who live should no longer live for themselves, but for Him who died and arose again on their behalf" (Romans 5:14,15).

The Christian has every reason to live a new life in Christ without regret. He is committed not to a corpse, but to a living Savior. If Jesus' death proved His great love for us, then certainly His resurrection proves His great power. If we are truly confident in our great redeemer, then our lives will show it because we know "that Christ, having been raised from the dead, is never to die again; death is no longer the master over Him" and likewise we consider ourselves "to be dead to sin, but alive unto God in Christ Jesus" (Romans 6:9,11).

Our hope is in Christ. On the occasion of Lazarus' death, Jesus was talking to his sister, Martha, and said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me shall live even if he dies" (John 11:25). Jesus identified Himself to John as "the Living One; and I was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of death and Hades" (Revelation 1:18). Because of the resurrection of Jesus it makes sense to believe these wonderful claims and promises. Where else can we go? Jesus has the words of eternal life!

From The Bradley Banner 8/5/2012
Published by the Bradley Church of Christ
1505 E. Broadway
Bulletins of the Month
Return to Homepage