THE RESURRECTION OF JESUS CHRIST TURNS FEAR INTO HOPE
THE RESURRECTION OF JESUS CHRIST TURNS FEAR INTO HOPE
At the southern tip of Africa, a cape jutting out into the ocean once caused sailors great anxiety. Many who attempted to sail around it were lost in the swirling seas. Because adverse weather conditions so often prevailed there, the region was named the Cape of Storms. A Portuguese captain determined to find a safe route through those treacherous waters so his countrymen could reach Cathay and the riches of the East Indies in safety. He succeeded, and the area was renamed the Cape of Good Hope. (And Biblical hope means absolute assurance of future good!)
We all face a great storm called death (Heb 9:27–note). But our Lord has already traveled through it safely and has provided a way for us to do the same. (1 Cor 15:55-57) By His crucifixion and resurrection, Christ abolished eternal death for every believer and has permanently established our fellowship with Him in heaven.
Now all who know Christ as Savior can face life’s final voyage with confidence (cf Heb 2:14-15–note). Even though the sea may be rough, we will experience no terror as we pass through the “CAPE OF GOOD HOPE” and into heaven’s harbor. The Master Helmsman Himself has assured our safe passage (cf Heb 6:19-20–note). —H. G. Bosch
Think of just crossing a river,
Stepping out safe on that shore,
Sadness and suffering over,
Dwelling with Christ evermore!
FOR ALL WHO ARE IN THE “ARK” OF CHRIST, HE HAS CHARTED A SAFE COURSE THROUGH THE DARK WATERS OF DEATH!
Up from the grave He arose,
With a mighty triumph o’er His foes,
He arose a Victor from the dark domain,
And He lives forever with His saints to reign.
He arose! He arose! Hallelujah! Christ arose!
Thomas Jefferson was a brilliant man, one of our greatest presidents and a main contributor to the Declaration of Independence, but sadly was also the author of a work known as the “Jefferson Bible.” Congress once issued a special edition of Jefferson’s “Bible” which was simply a copy of our Bible with all references to the supernatural eliminated. Jefferson confined himself solely to the moral teachings of Jesus. The last verse of the last chapter in the Jefferson Bible reads “There laid they Jesus, and rolled a great stone to the mouth of the sepulcher and departed.” Tragically Jefferson ended his “Bible” with Jesus in the tomb with no mention of His victorious resurrection. Praise God that the real Bible does not end that way but in the last book records those comforting words of our Lord “Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last, and the Living One; and I was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of death and of Hades.” (Revelation 1:17-18–note) And so every believer now possesses a “living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” (1 Peter 1:3–note)
C H Spurgeon would have strongly disagreed with Jefferson for he once said “The resurrection is a fact better attested than any event recorded in any history, whether ancient or modern.”
J C Ryle echoed this affirmation declaring that “in an age of abounding unbelief and skepticism, we shall find that the RESURRECTION of Christ will bear any weight that we can lay upon it.”
Indeed “the RESURRECTION of Jesus is the Gibraltar of the Christian faith and the Waterloo of infidelity and rationalism.” (R A Torrey)
Our faith is firmly grounded on the certainty of the resurrection of Jesus. Indeed, Christ’s resurrection is the central factor in our salvation because it is the greatest fact in history.
As Paul wrote “If Christ is not risen, your faith is futile (useless, worthless) and you are still in your sins!” (1 Corinthians 15:17)
In the early part of this century, a group of lawyers met in England to discuss the Biblical accounts of Jesus’ resurrection. They wanted to see if enough information was available to make a case that would hold up in a court of law. They concluded that Christ’s resurrection was one of the most well-established facts of history!
In his book Countdown, G. B. Hardy offers thought-provoking questions about the resurrection: “There are but two essential requirements: (1) Has anyone cheated death and proved it? (2) Is it available to me? Here is the complete record: Confucius’ tomb—occupied. Buddha’s tomb—occupied. Muhammad’s tomb—occupied. Jesus’ tomb—empty! Argue as you will, there is no point in following a loser.” Historical evidence and countless changed lives testify that the resurrection of Jesus is a fact, not a fable! Have you put your hope in the risen Christ? —D. C. Egner
Christ has risen from the dead and defeated death. “Thanks be to God, Who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord.” (1 Corinthians 15:57-58)
George Sweeting recalls that “In the early 1920’s, Nikolai Bukharin was sent from Moscow to Kiev to address a vast anti-God rally. For an hour he ridiculed the Christian faith until it seemed as if the whole structure of belief was in ruins. Questions were invited. A priest of the Orthodox church rose and asked to speak. He faced the crowd and spoke the ancient cry of victory “CHRIST IS RISEN.” (Matthew 28:7) Instantly the vast assembly rose to its feet, and the reply came back like a crash of breakers against a cliff, “HE IS RISEN INDEED!”
If you are skeptical or have friends who are skeptical of the truth of the Resurrection, here is a link to a free online copy of Frank Morrison’s 1930 classic “WHO MOVED THE STONE?” Morrison began his book as an unbeliever seeking to prove the resurrection was a myth, but ended as a believer in the Resurrected Redeemer because he was confronted with the life transforming truth that the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead was not meaningless myth but a resolute REALITY! God’s Spirit used Morrison’s book to move Lee Strobel from resolute atheism to genuine faith in Christ which Strobel later chronicled in his book “THE CASE FOR CHRIST” which has just been released as major motion picture (April, 2017). You might consider inviting an unbelieving relative or friend to go with you to view the movie and then have desert and discussion afterwards concerning the resurrection of Jesus Christ, the single most important event in all history and all eternity! (See movie trailer and Study Guide on The Case for Christ)
Father, please grant Your children Holy Spirit enabled boldness to encourage skeptical friends and relatives to read Morrison’s book and/or to go check out (or even to take them to see) Lee Strobel’s journey to faith in Christ. In our Risen Redeemer’s Name. Amen
LINK TO FRANK MORRISON’S ONLINE BOOK “WHO MOVED THE STONE?”
Christ the Lord is risen today, Alleluia!
Earth and heaven in chorus say, Alleluia!
Raise your joys and triumphs high, Alleluia!
Sing, ye heavens, and earth reply, Alleluia!
Love’s redeeming work is done, Alleluia!
Fought the fight, the battle won, Alleluia!
Death in vain forbids him rise, Alleluia!
Christ has opened paradise, Alleluia!
Lives again our glorious King, Alleluia!
Where, O death, is now thy sting? Alleluia!
Once he died our souls to save, Alleluia!
Where’s thy victory, boasting grave? Alleluia!
Soar we now where Christ has led, Alleluia!
Following our exalted Head, Alleluia!
Made like him, like him we rise, Alleluia!
Ours the cross, the grave, the skies, Alleluia!
Hail the Lord of earth and heaven, Alleluia!
Praise to thee by both be given, Alleluia!
Thee we greet triumphant now, Alleluia!
Hail the Resurrection, thou, Alleluia!
King of glory, soul of bliss, Alleluia!
Everlasting life is this, Alleluia!
Thee to know, thy power to prove, Alleluia!
Thus to sing, and thus to love, Alleluia!
— Charles Wesley
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