Bible Society of South Africa
Frank Retief

Remember his strength – Day 18

He is risen

Bible text(s)

6“Don't be alarmed,” he said. “I know you are looking for Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He is not here — he has been raised! Look, here is the place where they put him.

Sometimes, people say that if they could only see a miracle, they would believe. Some go further and say that the miracle must be for them and their circumstances. If God delivered them, then they would believe.

Firstly, the Bible is full of miracles witnessed by hundreds of people who, in the end, did not believe but rather shouted, “Crucify him! Crucify him!” We all tend to underestimate the hardness of our hearts in this regard. Today, we have the most amazing film and television technology that takes us from the wonders at the bottom of the ocean to the indescribable vastness and the glory of deep space. Still, we do not believe.

When Jesus was on earth, he performed three miracles of raising the dead. The first was the daughter of Jairus, the synagogue ruler, the second was the son of the widow of Nain, recorded in Luke 7, and the third was the raising of Lazarus in John 11. Many witnessed these things but still did not believe, although some did.

Each of the gospels ends with the story of Jesus’ mighty resurrection from the dead. All the endings point to a mighty miracle – the moving of the stone, the shocked condition of the guards at the tomb, the angels of light – the records are all there. Still, people continue in hardheartedness.

What does this all mean for us who do believe? Well, Jesus’ resurrection is not the same as raising the other three from the dead. All three of them eventually died once again. These were miracles of resuscitation, rather than resurrection, and there are many mysteries associated with them. However, when Jesus rose from the dead, it was once and for all! Death was decisively conquered. His resurrection is a promise to all who trust in him, that they themselves will, one day, be resurrected to life everlasting.

We who believe in Jesus, of all people, have a most glorious hope. Yes, we will die physically. However, we will not die eternally. The Lord, who watches over us, even when our spirits are with him, will resurrect us from the dead. We will have new bodies, live on a new earth, under new heavens and under the rule of a great King. Never, never despair.

Bible Society of South Africav.4.16.16
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