(Something written on 21st October 2007, it still has a fresh take on it, it captures my wonder rediscovering it’s meaning!)
It somehow struck me dumbfounded and thus shaped the way I’m thinking and living now. Maybe it’s kind of like the light bulb experience where ideas just pops out in our minds. I wonder why I have not known about this earlier. I think tradition and the way we read the bible muffled the voice of the Spirit speaking through scripture, thus making us (me) ‘ever hearing but never listening’.
Resurrection is actually very important to our Christian faith. When we talk about the gospel, elements like Jesus coming, living, dying on the cross although he was innocent and the pinnacle of his story is he rose up from the dead. I think we have become so accustomed with the story and thus it’s meaning and relevance has eluded us. I mean how many times do we hear these words or say that we profess them? I think if I talked about it or presented it, and asked ‘do I have an amen?’ , the initial response would be ‘AMEN’. I sincerely wished that we would wake up from our slumber, because it does not cause us to bubble up with joy. I think some people would say that this is nothing new. How absurd!!!! How is it the resurrection of Jesus is just glanced like a page or passage that has been glued together. We almost don’t believe it is true. If we did and the Spirit tells us, we would live our lives differently!
To me the resurrection brings the Christian message to full circle. It brings some sort of completeness. Some sort of transcendence. Some sort of wonder. Some sort of vitality. Some sort of Renewal.
It’s like a big ugly caterpillar. It stars out coming out from its egg. Then craws out and eats and eats and becomes this ugly fat giant thing that girls hate. At the right time it spins itself into a cocoon and after some time, comes out completely transformed from an ugly caterpillar into a beautiful butterfly. Amazing right! Better then any show on ‘Extreme make over’.
Resurrection is something like that. Now when we speak of Jesus’ resurrection we often stop at what we think we believe. We affirm it with our mouth and minds and neck and head (we nod). But when a question like “What does the resurrection mean then for your life?” everyone would be like quiet and some would say “I don’t know.” Lets face it believing as we understand what believe means is not enough. We must see it’s relevance to our lives as well. Until that transition we are not there yet.
Well some might answer the question pose just now with “that means I don’t just die but I’ll have some sort of after life experience where I will go to heaven”. That would normally be the response. We die, we ‘resurrect’ and go to heaven. That would be our view of eternal life. But does that not sound like after life? To me it does, because we are escaping life, physical life, because we say that it is decaying and god will destroy it. Our domain is in heaven, the real home. Are we really sure?
In Acts, Peter asked Jesus when the kingdom will be restored to Israel. I believe this excitement crept up in the disciples because the Messiah is alive again. Surely, he will now destroy the enemies. But notice Jesus’ answer to him. He was saying that it is not revealed the time yet, even for Jesus. If thus heaven would be our destiny, why didn’t Jesus rebuke Peter and the disciples that the earth will be passing away. Jesus simply said not now but wait, it will be restored but not now.
Sometimes the story of resurrection and new heavens and new earth overlap that it’s best to stick them together. Now coming back to the resurrection again, What makes the realization that New Creation to be possible? The implication is derived from the resurrection. Jesus rising from the dead recreates a different story or tune if you may about the normal story; death wins. But in Jesus’ case death has lost. Jesus’ obedience was what that resurrected him. His life lived as a pleasing offering to God validated him being the true sacrifice. So he was put to death only to rise again because he pleased God. Looking to this, God’s image that was supposed to be in man was restored. Since it was humanity that fell into sin and thus brought the whole thing on creation, God redeemed man in Jesus.
I have an earlier post on Resurrection here as well.