The news came, ‘our Dad passed away just now’. Flashback on the life of my father came like lightning in my mind. Daddy taught us many things in his lifetime. Among them was his firm believe in the Resurrection of Christ. In that moment of our grief, ‘Daddy must be meeting his Savior now. He holds onto his faith until he breathe his last. How blessed is he!’ For mankind death is inevitable. Since Dad had already proclaimed Jesus Christ as his Savior, it was just a matter of time till we met Him.
And if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty.*
Jesus Christ was crucified on the Cross; His body was claimed by one rich man, Joseph of Arimathea. With Pilate’s permission, they took His body, wrapped in clean linen cloth with spices, and buried Him in his new tomb in a garden. Nicodemus and others accompanied him in the whole thing. Jesus was buried in accordance with Jewish burial customs. Again, with Pilate’s permission, the tomb was guarded. (Matthew 27:62-66)
For the disciples, Jesus was the Son of God; God in the flesh. In Him, they believed. Yet they might have expected that in some ways He might skipped death. But that does not happen. They saw Him suffering, they saw him dying. They might be pondering, ‘Oh my! He was the Son of God. How can this happen to Him? But now He was dead’. So they locked themselves in the upper room, where they had the Passover Meal the day before, fearing they too might face the same fate. Can you see yourself here?
In His death, Jesus Christ set free the dead. On the third day, He rose from the dead. Mary Magdalene went to anoint His dead body accompanied by Matthew, Mark, and Luke. They found the tomb open. Jesus was no more there inside. The angels told them He has risen! The angels told them to meet Him in Galilee as they had been foretold. Jesus Christ, in his body, met his disciples here. Apostle Paul recorded Jesus Christ appeared to the twelve disciples, and then to more than five hundred people, and so on. (1 Corinthians 15:3-8) Let me leave the proceedings of the resurrection here. Scientists and Researchers keep working on the evident, which are given knowledge for that purpose only.
This particular situation happened many times in life. We know God is there, but sometimes He just seems dead. He was not working, it seems. He has promised us His presence and we know He had all things under Him. But sadly, He was dead like normal human. They could no longer talk to Him. We did pray to Him but somehow, we feel, He just did not do anything. We feel lonely; we feel we are left to fend by ourselves. It was hard to get through even one night in the wilderness. Have you been that road? I had.
But it doesn’t end here. He rose again. When they most needed Him, He appeared in their midst, out of nowhere. Even for the ‘Doubting Thomas’, He was there to show the nail marks, and in his reached to even touch Him. He was kind enough to clear the doubts of Thomas. He will also clear our doubts one day, in whatever way is best for us. Keep the faith. He is available for every situation, for every type of person.
Death, the most feared fate of man, has been conquered. All our fears and doubts will also be conquered. The resurrection is the vindication of His teachings. Christ the Victor proclaimed victory over Evil. Even death could not hold Him longer. The hope of life after death was reaffirmed. One day, we will be joining Him in the celebration. The dark night is going to pass soon. What a great day it would be when I see my Savior face to face.
*1 Corinthians 15:14