Christ #7 – Three Words that Changed the World
Ken Perry | Assistant to the Reach Pastor
Extra, Extra, Read all about it! King of the Jews’ tomb is empty!!!
That would have been the shouted headline of the day if papyrus boys existed in the first century. The town would have been buzzing with the news of Jesus’ resurrection. The truth, though, is that the rulers did not want the news to get out. They knew what Jesus predicted His death, burial, and resurrection and in Matthew 27:62-64 we read of the religious rulers asking Pontius Pilate to have the tomb sealed to prevent that from happening. Silly boys, they did not know that death could not hold Him, and no grave could contain Him.
Modern day Christian congregations around the globe repeat these three words every Easter Sunday…HE IS RISEN! Which is followed by the familiar retort of “He is risen indeed.” As if saying these words is a secret password whispered to each other in passing. The simple fact is that no three words have ever changed the world like these have, and we should be shouting them from the hilltops every day.
Central to our Christian faith is Jesus dying on a cross and being buried in a borrowed tomb, yet crucial to our faith is the belief in His resurrection three days later. If Christ did not rise from the grave, then our faith is in vain. The apostle Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 15:17-19 (NLT), “And if Christ has not been raised, then your faith is useless and you are still guilty of your sins. In that case, all who have died believing in Christ are lost! And if our hope in Christ is only for this life, we are more to be pitied than anyone in the world.”
Hebrews 12:2b (NLT) says that we are the joy for which Christ went to the cross and that He is NOW seated at the right hand of God. Notice the present tense. He is still there ever interceding on our behalf. We have the hope of Heaven because of the resurrection. We have the hope that we will see our believing loved ones again because Jesus rose from the dead. We live a life, according to Scripture, to the best of our ability because we know there is a God in heaven who loves us and we cannot wait to see Him. All of this and more were made possible by the Father sending His Son to earth to pay the penalty for our sin. He gave everything to a people that can give nothing in return. The words of Elvina Hall echo in my ear. She wrote, “Jesus paid it all, all to Him I owe, sin had left a crimson stain, He washed it white as snow.”
Oh Christian, won’t you take time this day and think of the “all” that Jesus paid for you. Think of the immense price of God’s only Son when contrasted by the nothing we have to offer in return. It should bring us to our knees in sorrow, but to our feet in joy for that which awaits us in Heaven because of the resurrection of our Savior Jesus Christ. Thank you, Jesus!