December 11, 2018

Stations of the Cross: The Fifteenth Station

A Series for Holy Week.
Thanks to Jeff Dunn for leading us in these meditations.

STATION FIFTEEN
The Resurrection

Scripture

Now, let me ask you something profound yet troubling. If you became believers because you trusted the proclamation that Christ is alive, risen from the dead, how can you let people say that there is no such thing as a resurrection? If there’s no resurrection, there’s no living Christ. And face it—if there’s no resurrection for Christ, everything we’ve told you is smoke and mirrors, and everything you’ve staked your life on is smoke and mirrors. Not only that, but we would be guilty of telling a string of barefaced lies about God, all these affidavits we passed on to you verifying that God raised up Christ—sheer fabrications, if there’s no resurrection.

If corpses can’t be raised, then Christ wasn’t, because he was indeed dead. And if Christ weren’t raised, then all you’re doing is wandering about in the dark, as lost as ever. It’s even worse for those who died hoping in Christ and resurrection, because they’re already in their graves. If all we get out of Christ is a little inspiration for a few short years, we’re a pretty sorry lot. But the truth is that Christ has been raised up, the first in a long legacy of those who are going to leave the cemeteries.

1 Corinthians 15: 12-20 The Message

Meditation
The most incredible feat ever, bigger than the Big Bang, more impressive than a super nova, was done with almost no fanfare, no acknowledgment. It was done in such a way that a door of doubt was left open so that the entire act itself could be called into question. Yes, others had been raised from the dead before: Elijah stretched himself over the dead body of the son of a woman who fed him. Jesus raised a young girl and Lazarus back to life. But now Jesus Himself is coming back to life, with no prophet to pray the prayer that raises the dead. The one who said he himself was Life—LIFE!—had died.

But now his tomb was empty, and he lived. Where were the television crews? Where were the publishers with three-book contracts and a nationwide marketing campaign? Where were the mega-synagogue leaders lining up to have Jesus come and preach in their pulpits?

There was nothing of the sort when Jesus, the Son of God, came back to life. Instead, he was mistaken for a gardener. He had to pass through a wall to get into the room where his closest friends were in hiding. One of his twelve best friends said he wouldn’t believe Jesus was back unless he could touch his nail holes. Then, even after he had appeared several times to them, Peter and the other disciples still didn’t recognize Jesus as he cooked a breakfast of fish over coals on the beach.

Is there anything all that surprising here to us today? Don’t we still go rushing off to see if we can find Jesus in the latest shopping mall-turned hipster church? Or on television programs that are, in a kind word, embarrassing to watch? Or we try to find him by reading books that tell us—even without Jesus’ name mentioned on a single page—just how we can have the life of our dreams by believing.

Do we really believe Jesus arose from the dead?

Really. Do we believe that the Son of God was dead but on a day just like today came back to life? Or has it all just been a religious game to play because, well, everyone else does it.

Jesus either resurrected or he didn’t. If he didn’t, then why are we wasting our time trying to be nice people, not cuss or cheat on taxes or tell too many lies. Wouldn’t our lives be more enjoyable if we did whatever we wanted to do as there is nothing beyond this world.

But if Jesus really did resurrect, what does that mean? How are we to live our lives in the light of a resurrected Savior?

That is the question. Now, you must present your answer. Time’s up. Pencils down. This was is not a test. Your life is in the balance.

Action
Choose one:

  • Jesus was a good teacher whose death was a tragedy. His followers tried to mitigate their sorrow by coming up with a metaphor for how life can bounce back even after something bad happens to you. Don’t worry—you can still have your best life now.
  • Jesus is really, truly alive. He died but came back to life in bodily form. He is still alive today. And because he is, I too will live forever.

Prayer
Jesus, what I believe about your resurrection sets the course for the rest of my life. It is not a decision I make quickly or lightly. But it is one I must make. I have made up my mind. Here is what I believe: _____________________________________.

Chorus
We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

Comments

  1. David Cornwell says:

    Here is the powerful, life changing, amazing core of the good news. Christ is living.

  2. On this Resurrection Sunday, I consider the following:

    “For the Lamb in the midst of the throne will be their shepherd, and he will guide them to springs of living water, and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes” (Revelation 7:17 ESV).

    Hope the heart aches for.

  3. He is alive, and I am forgiven, and Heaven’s gates are open wide. Hallelujah!