What does the Resurrection of Jesus represent?
Today, the Easter basket might be full, but the tomb is empty! There might be a massive search for colored eggs and chocolate candies, but the hunt for Jesus is over! They found Him long ago. Walking around with holes in His hands and a wound in His side, physically living and breathing after being dead for three days. Not like a zombie either, and not like Frankenstein. Jesus’ resurrection wasn’t the result of a secret lab experiment, an airborne virus or a radioactive plague. It was the result of divine intervention by God, in response to His Son’s perfectly lived life, and the answering of His Son’s honorable prayer request. “…Jesus…lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, ‘Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son that the son may glorify you… Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world existed.'” – John 17:1-5 (ESV)
Easter is about the resurrection of Jesus; a resurrection that consists of Power, Strength, and Vitality.
Power Over Death
Being able to bring someone back to life is pretty remarkable. I’m sure it happens quite often nowadays. From administering CPR , to shocking flatliners with defibrillators, the amount of times people have been resuscitated are probably a lot more common than in Jesus’ day. However, if you’ve ever administered CPR on someone, you know, it’s not an easy task. It requires energy, effort, strength, and focus. To be able to use a defibrillator, you have to have a charge consisting of so many volts of electric current. You are in all cases dependent on a battery, electricity, or someone that’s been trained and certified and knows what they’re doing.
Jesus demonstrates His power over death by being dependent on no one other than God, who is Almighty. Three times in the New Testament Jesus brought people back to life with nothing more than the power of His words. In most cases bringing someone back to life meant simply saying, “Arise.” In one case, there was a man already laid in the grave and the only thing Jesus had to do was say, “Come out,” and the man that had died came out. The resurrection of Jesus wasn’t made possible by magic, or the Energizer Bunny, or a mad scientist. It happened because God said, “Rise up!” Just as in the creation of man did God have the power to speak life into existence, so does He possess the authority to conquer death into oblivion, especially in the case of Jesus who committed no sin, but only righteousness. This power, God has passed on to Jesus who revives us and will one day resurrect us into heaven forever.
New Life in Christ
Paul says it best, “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live but Christ who lives in me.” – Galatians 2:20. Easter kicks off with the observance of Good Friday, commemorating the day Jesus died on the cross for our sin. When we believe that He sacrificed Himself for us, that faith causes a regeneration in our hearts, minds, and souls. We are made alive in the here and now, into eternity. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” – John 3:16. Faith in Jesus instantaneously creates a union with Him, a relationship status of friends forever. It also serves as the acceptance of adoption in the family of God as sons and daughters. The Holy Spirit then makes this bond official, unbreakable, and irreversible. Resurrection Sunday represents the heart of Christianity. It’s what makes being a follower of Jesus possible in this life and a citizen of His kingdom in the next.
Our Easter baskets take on the form of jars of clay filled with grace, mercy, love, food that endlessly satisfies hunger, and drink that forever quenches our thirst. Through this sustenance, we are enabled to know God, grow closer to Him, and live in light of everything He’s done for us. We are now part of something bigger than ourselves, a higher purpose that brings light into a broken world. This light is meant to shine with the power that overcomes despair, hopelessness, and anxiety, to produce joy, health, and confidence. No more reason to fear and doubt because we have courage and assurance in Jesus, freedom in Christ! His power and strength transforms our souls, making them fit to spend the rest of our days with God forever and ever.
That is what the resurrection represents.