The Resurrection Faith
“Beyond the shadow of a doubt”, is the standard of a legal court for proving a case for someone. Peter, the apostle of Jesus, who was formally known as Simon, wrote this later In his life: 2 Peter 1:16 | (Matt. 17:5; Mark 9:7; Luke 9:35) “For we did not follow cunningly devised fables when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of His majesty.”
The documents that we possess are eyewitness and, or, carefully researched accounts like Luke’s gospel, were given to us to know God and to believe. In fact, John the apostle wrote this in his eyewitness account about why the the experiences were recorded,
“And truly Jesus did many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.”
The resurrection faith is the faith that leads to life!
In America, as a culture, we believe in our own ability to “pull ourselves up by the bootstraps” and “believe in ourselves”. This may lead to success, but it will not lead to life. We believe in resource (you know, money), but, that may give you security, but it won’t give you life. Some people believe in government, which may yield dividends, but it won’t give you life. Some people put faith in technology, which may bring advantages in this life, but it will not bring you to life!
Paul addressed this in his first letter to the Corinthian Church, when he said in 1 Corinthians 15:19, “If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most pitiable.“ You see there is only one thing that brings hope in this life and the next, that is a person, Jesus.
Why is this true only of Him?
The Buddha claimed that there was a way to enlightenment. Jesus, plainly said He was not only the way, but the truth and the life. His way didn’t help you reach enlightenment, but a reconnection with the Father, completing the relationship for which we were created. The Buddha promised life through the detachment to things and people, Jesus gives life that brings attachment to Papa God and His creation.
Mohammed demands submission to Allah and his rules of life found in the Quran, to simply exist. Jesus doesn’t demand rules, but transfers life to us in the context of connection through a relationship, with Him and the Father. He says it clearly, “I have come to give you life and that more abundantly”, and He presents a choice that we must decide on.
You see, there is a place in this life for decision when it comes to Jesus. In the next life, submission and the declaration of His Lordship will be a non-negotiable for those who have resisted His overtures to come to life. But now, it is possible to simply decide and from that decision enter into a relationship where alignment is a natural choice. (See Philippians 2 for more information about this.)
For the non-believer, or pre-believer as I tend to look at people, this means that the main decision in life is towards life in Jesus, which with it brings relationship with the Father, the completion of a Heavenly family. Life always leads to family.
For the believer, who already is assured of life in His name, there is a deepening invitation into what abundant life is and to embrace the ever deepening connections of family. There is no end to what Jesus has invited us into as Paul says in 1 Corinthians 2:9-10,
“But as it is written:
"Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,
Nor have entered into the heart of man
The things which God has prepared for those who love Him."
But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God.”
This is why it is so important to settle something as basic as the resurrection, because eternity hinges on it for you. We must lift our aim to want what God has for us in heaven. As C.S. Lewis said, “Aim for heaven and you get earth thrown in. Aim for earth and you get neither.” (C.S. Lewis - The Joyful Christian)
To help you with this, I am including some book suggestions and video resources. I really encourage you to investigate this, if not for you, for someone you will help along in the faith.
In the meantime, there is nothing that compares to a personal encounter with the resurrected Jesus! Let’s celebrate the risen Christ! Invite your believing and non-believing friends. Join us at both our Passover celebration at 6 pm on Friday or our Easter celebration on Sunday, April 17th at 10 am. Go here to see more.
He is Risen!
Books for Further Reading and Research:
The first few minutes the audio is loud and overdriven. Turn down your volume slightly until they correct it.
And the original which I owned as a kid....