Saturday, April 11, 2009

Resurrection Sunday

(I looked for a nifty graphic to go with my Resurrection Sunday post, but I can't find one...sorry!!)

I've read a lot of wonderful posts celebrating Resurrection Sunday, and I keep telling myself that I can't compare with what's already been posted. But it seems so terrible to skip over the most important day in Christianity.

The most important day, you say? Yes, I believe I can stand firmly behind that statement. When the majority of people think of the most important Christian holiday, or their favorite, most people cite Christmas. But Christ simply coming to earth as a baby wasn't enough. Coming to earth to live and preach and teach the Gospel as no one else ever could have wouldn't assure us eternity. What about "Good Friday," quoted because I firmly do not believe that Christ was crucified on Friday; if He was he could not have risen on Sunday. More on that below. Dying on the cross as our atoning sacrificial lamb was not enough either, but we're getting closer! It is the promise of the resurrection that truly gives us Christians the promise of eternity. Just as Christ arose bodily, in a glorified body, we also shall be given a new body, sanctified and spotless.

This is one of my favorite passages teaching on the resurrection. It's just in plain speech.

Now if Christ be preached that he rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen: And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain. Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not. For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins. Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable. But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. --1 Corinthians 15:12-22

As I was saying about "Good Friday..."

For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. --Matthew 12:40

Three days and three nights very specifically refers to 3 twenty-four hour time periods. Even if Christ died early on Friday morning, that is still not 3 days.

Now the LORD had prepared a great fish to swallow up Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights. --Jonah 1:17

I mentioned this just to back up Matthew's account.

In the end of the sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre. And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified. He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. --Matthew 28:1, 5-6

These are some of the Scriptures that I readily see that explain when Christ was crucified. I really could write more explanation in my own words. I just don't think I could do as good of a job as this article I found. This article isn't were I learned what day Christ was crucified; I found it just today just because I wanted to find someone who can write and explain better than I! :-)

The first several years after I was born-again, I got completely excited about Christmas. I didn't understand all the tradition of men that revolve around Christmas, but it was the knowledge that Christ gave Himself and was sent to earth in a most humble fashion that excited me. I find myself, as I grow older in the Lord (not that I'm some kind of super wise, mega-Christian ... haha), becoming even more excited about the resurrection.

Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord. --1 Corinthians 15:51-58

0 edifying expressions: