“…but the men said to them, ‘Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen!’” –Luke 24:5-6 (NIV)
At the centre of humanity is the resurrection. It is what believers in Christ on Easter have celebrated throughout the ages, and it is what continues to be celebrated around the world by those who proclaim Christ to be Lord. Without the resurrection, the redemptive mission of Christ loses its power and His sacrifice becomes irrelevant; bearing no transformative implications for our lives. While Christ died for our sins and we are forgiven and made right with God through His death, His sacrifice becomes a convenient excuse to continue living in sin if the story was just left at His crucifixion and burial. The purpose of Christ’s coming was not simply to cleanse us of sin, but to give us life and freedom from it.
When Christ arose from the tomb, there was something markedly different about Him. His resurrection resulted in Him gaining two things; a new body and a new nature. This nature was characterized by the righteousness which comes from God and it shone forth for all to see. The old sinful nature was dead and buried, and God raised Jesus up to bring Him into newness of life and clothed with His holiness. But how does this relate to us? When we accept Christ and allow Him to come into our hearts, we become like Him in His resurrection. Through Him our old sinful nature has died and we are clothed by the righteousness which comes from God. Though we were once slaves to sin, we are now freed by becoming slaves of righteousness as we allow His Spirit to help us live according to the new nature He has given us. Have we become dead to our sin and entered into new life with Christ? In doing this we will find freedom from the destructive consequences of sin and allow Christ to raise us up; unshackling us from our depravity so that we will find liberty, hope, and life eternal in Him.
Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.