March 23, 2008 Leave a comment
As Christians around the world celebrate Resurrection Sunday, today Easter, we found this piece written by Helen Middlebrooke, a freelance writer over at Pacific Daily News.
Mom,” Audra said from the back seat, “how many days until Easter?”
I did some quick thinking and said, “Ten.”
” Jesus rose from the dead on Easter, right?”
“That’s right.”"Then,” she said thoughtfully, “why does he have to rise again?”
“He doesn’t,” I said. “That’s the whole point. Jesus is alive. We just remember that he did it on Resurrection Sunday.”
“Oh,” she said. Then, having had enough theology for one ride, she diverted her attention to other things. But I continued thinking about her insightfulness.
Audra understood something that has mystified much of mankind for nearly 2000 years: Jesus is alive.
No other religion on earth can make that claim. Mohammed is dead. You can visit his grave. Buddha is dead; he was cremated and his ashes were distributed throughout Asia.
But Christians have no grave to visit, no bones to venerate.
All we have is an empty tomb, because the originator and object of our faith — Jesus Christ — is ALIVE!
And that makes all the difference in the world.
If Christ did not rise from the dead, the Christian faith is vain, because it rests on the fact that “Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures, and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures. (1 Cor. 15:3-4)”
If he didn’t rise, those of us who believe in him are, as Paul pointed out, “of all men most miserable.” In other words, we would be believing in a human savior — a dead savior — who had lied about himself and the one he called his father. We would be as deluded as he apparently was.
If Christ did not rise, today is a sham. There’s no point in going to church this or any Sunday, because it will do you no good to worship a dead man. A dead man cannot answer your prayers or change your life.
But the good news is that Jesus did rise! The perfect, sinless, God-man, who died for the sins of the world, is alive, and he lives to give new life to all who believe in him.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”