By The Resurrection
There are a number of individuals in the Bible who was raised from the dead. Here are a few: Widow of Zarephath's son (1 Ki. 17:17-24), Shunammite Woman's son (2 Ki. 4:18-37), Widow of Nain's son (Lk. 7:11-27), Jairus' daughter (Lk. 8:52-56), Lazarus (Jn. 11:1-46), Tabitha (Ac. 8:36-43), and Eutychus (Ac. 20:7-12). Though significant, these resurrections do not make possible what the resurrection of Jesus makes possible. In this short article, we consider "by the resurrection" of Christ.
JESUS DECLARED TO BE THE SON OF GOD
In writing to the Saints at Rome, Paul penned: "And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead" (Ro. 1:4). Notice it was through or by the resurrection that Jesus declared to be the Son of God. How did Jesus' rising from the dead declare that he is the Son of God? Verse 2 states that God had made a promise, in the scriptures, by the prophets. There are many things which God had stated through the prophets concerning the coming Christ. One of which was the foretelling of his resurrection. Notice: "For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption" (Ps. 16:10). Peter uses this portion of the Psalm in application to Jesus (Ac. 2:27ff). Upon one occasion, when asked for a sign, Jesus said no sign would be given but the sign of the prophet Jonah. What was that sign? Hear Christ: "For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be in the heart of the earth" (Mt. 12:40). It was this Jesus, that God raised from the dead and made both Lord and Christ (Ac. 2:37).
The Bible teaches we are saved by a number of things such as Christ (Lk. 19:10), grace (Eph. 2:8), hope (Ro. 8:24), the gospel (1 Cor. 15:1,2), preaching (1 Cor. 1:21), and mercy (Ti. 3:5). The Bible affirms just as clearly that we are saved by baptism. Read: "The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us...." (1 Pt. 1:21). How does baptism save? You must keep reading. With that question in mind read: "The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ." By what means does Peter declare baptism saves? It is "by the resurrection of Jesus Christ". Had Jesus not raised from the dead, baptism would be of no value. Paul penned: "Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life" (Ro. 6:4). Had there been no resurrection of Christ, there would be no rising from the waters of baptism to walk in newness of life.
WE ARE BEGOTTEN UNTO A LIVELY HOPE
Hope is an "anchor of the soul" the writer of Hebrews declared (Heb. 6:19). Peter penned: "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead" (1 Pt. 1:3). By what means do we have hope? The resurrection of Jesus. By the resurrection of Jesus, those who sleep in Christ will be resurrected to life eternal (Jo. 5:29; 1 Th. 4:13-18). Notice, this is not a dead hope but rather a living or lively hope. Paul wrote: "If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable" (1 Cor. 15:19). The time will come when those who labor in service to God will have rest. "There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God" (Heb. 4:9). John heard and penned: "Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them" (Rev. 14:13). Thanks be to our great God for the resurrection of his Son, our Savior, Jesus the Christ!
- Donnie Oliver