SUNDAY, MARCH 31, 2013.
SIGNIFICANCE OF CHRIST’S RESURRECTION
But go, tell His disciples and Peter that He is going before you into Galilee; there you will see Him, as He said to you.’ (Mk. 16v7).
The story of Christ’s resurrection cannot be wished away; it’s a historical reality. St Paul says: ‘and if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain.’ (I Cor. 15v14). That it happened and that it is being celebrated all over the world, today, strengthens the faith of the believer and gives him hope that Christ lives forever.
His resurrection has the following key points: first, Jesus kept His promise to rise from the dead. He had told the Jews, ‘destroy this temple and I will build it in three days.’ The Jews thought He was referring to a physical temple. But Jesus was referring to His body. On Good Friday, they dealt with this body. But His promise came to pass. We have no reason to doubt the risen Christ. More so, as He says to us, ‘where I am there you may be also.’ Jn. 14v3).
Secondly, Christ’s resurrection gives us assurance that we also will resurrect. Sometimes, people feel that Bible stories are fables. No. Jesus, in His earthly encounter with Martha, the sister of Lazarus, said: ‘…your brother will rise again…I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me, though he may die, he shall live.’ (Jn. 11v23, 25). This is a great assurance. Even when we die, physically, we will have a resurrection body and be with the Lord. To genuine Christians, the grave is not a final bus stop.
Thirdly, the power of God that brought Christ’s body back from the dead is available to bring our morally and spiritually dead selves back to life. (I Cor. 15v12-14). It is very sad to observe that many who are living are dead in sin and may not be delivered, except the power of God that brought back Jesus intervenes.
Recently, a woman celebrated 50 years of prostitution. That is 50 years of sin. Such, by the power of resurrection, can be brought back from the dead. The scripture warns: ‘the body is the temple of the living God and whoever pollutes it shall be destroyed.’ Nigerians are deep in iniquity. But thanks to God, His resurrection power has come to set us free. Let us not toy with this power.
Finally, His resurrection has given the Church the Gospel of salvation. Christ the Gospel of salvation. Christ has mandated His followers to ‘go into the world and preach the good news…’ (Mt. 28v20).
Christ is risen! It is pertinent we accept Him as Lord and Saviour. His resurrection power is still at work and is capable of delivering us from every sinful situation.
It is our prayer that the Holy Spirit will guide and guard us, so that we would not falter in our heavenly race.
Happy Easter Celebrations!VEN. ERNEST ONUOHA Rector, Ibru International Ecumenical Centre, Agbarha-Otor, Delta State.