If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins.
1 Corinthians 15:17
A Close Call
A man made a really big mistake when he was hunting a couple of years ago. While climbing up into his tree stand he failed to follow basic safety protocol. He did not unload his gun. Somehow, as he was hauling it up into the tree, the gun discharged, firing a bullet within inches of his face.
It was definitely a close call. Just a few inches over and the story would have been a terribly tragic one. His family would have been devastated. His wife would be a widow, and his youngest child would have never been born.
Fortunately, those tragic results are only hypothetical because the bullet sailed harmlessly past. Now instead of tragic heartbreak, his family has an astonishing, albeit scary, story to tell.
Jesus’ resurrection from the dead is an astonishing story. He died, and his lifeless body was prepared for the grave and placed in a tomb. Then he came alive again!
If he hadn’t, if his body is still in the tomb, the results for us would be unimaginably tragic. Everything Christians believe would be worthless. Even worse than that—we would still be immersed in our sins, and the eternal punishment we deserve for them would be unavoidable.
Thankfully, those horrific results are only hypothetical, and it wasn’t even really a close call. There was never any question as to whether or not Jesus would rise. That had been God’s promise all along. Jesus clearly told his disciples that he would rise from the grave three days after his death, and that is exactly what he did.
Since Jesus is alive, our faith is not worthless. It is firmly placed in our God who keeps his promises and is so powerful that he can even overcome death. Since Jesus is alive, we are no longer in our sins. The One who gave his life as the payment for everything we have ever done wrong was no ordinary man. He is God himself, which means that his sacrifice was valuable enough to pay for our sins and the sins of the entire world.
Jesus, my Savior, your resurrection from the dead is the single most important event in the history of our world. Help me to know and believe that it is true and fill my heart with joy because of the truly amazing results that are mine: a sure foundation for my faith and sins that are removed eternally. In your name I ask it. Amen.
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