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Category Archives: resurrection

What Does Christ’s Resurrection Mean to You?

“The resurrection is one of the most wicked, vicious, heartless hoaxes ever foisted upon the minds of men, or it is the most fantastic fact of history.” Today is resurrection Sunday. What difference should the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ make in my life?

I understand that the early believers did not greet each other by reciting recent sports scores, but by one of them saying, “He is RISEN!” And the other responding, “He is risen INDEED!” But why do we hear so few sermons on Christ’s resurrection during the year — and it seems to be the only theme on a Sunday like today?

Paul’s treatise on Christ’s resurrection in I Corinthians 15 is well-known. That document alone demolishes foolish views like the disciples stole the body, or Jesus’ resurrection appearances were merely hallucinations, or the disciples went to the wrong tomb on that Easter morn.

“He’s risen in MY heart!”

I Corinthians 15 shoots down the silly notion that what really matters is that “Jesus lives in my heart” (which even the Jesus seminar member Marcus Borg says!). Robert Funk, Borg’s predecessor, stated that the bodily resurrection of Jesus didn’t happen and that the body was most likely eaten by dogs.

Jesus’ bodily resurrection demonstrates the Father’s approval of the Son’s work, proves that Jesus kept His word about “taking back His life again,” and guarantees our own resurrections (for those who have trusted Him as Savior). The evidences of the “almost-empty” tomb (the graveclothes were left), the resurrection appearances, and the bold preaching of the disciples in the very city in which their Master was executed reminds us that we have good and sufficient reasons to believe the Gospel — even at the cost of our own lives!

THE ALMOST EMPTY TOMB

Discussion Questions: Why is the resurrection of Jesus important to YOU? If you really believe He rose from the dead, what differences should that make in your life and mine?

 
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Posted by on April 12, 2020 in resurrection

 

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Some Thoughts on the Book “What’s the Least I Can Believe and Still Be a Christian?” (Post #18): Chapter 17- “Jesus’ Resurrection”

Chapter 17 of Martin Thielen’s book What’s the Least I Can Believe and Still Be a Christian? is entitled Jesus’ Resurrection. His subtitle is “Is There Hope?” Thielen does a masterful job of affirming the resurrection of the Lord Jesus and showing that it is our HOPE.

I like how he brings in contemporary films (such as Cast Away and The Shawshank Redemption) to show the absolute necessity of HOPE. He also bears his own soul in telling about his sorrow of having to conduct the funeral for a pastor friend who died (with his whole family) in a car crash. Only hope (inspired by the resurrection of Jesus) could redeem this awful tragedy, he thought to himself.

He quotes the words from The Shawshank Redemption in which Andy says to Red, “Remember, hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.”

MY RESPONSE: I don’t disagree with Thielen about anything in this chapter. What concerns me is that he says nothing to challenge one of the scholars he quotes earlier in his book (Marcus Borg) on another issue. But Borg said the following about the resurrection of Christ: “I think the resurrection of Jesus really happened, but I have no idea if it involves anything happening to his corpse, and, therefore, I have no idea whether it involves an empty tomb, and for me, that doesn’t matter because the central meaning of the Easter experience or the resurrection of Jesus is that His followers continue to experience Him as a living reality, a living presence after His death. So I would have no problem whatsoever with archaeologists finding the corpse of Jesus. For me that would not be a discrediting of the Christian faith or the Christian tradition.”

Granted, Thielen is writing these last chapters to state what he believes Christians ought to believe. But I wish he were more forthcoming about those who deny the resurrection of the Lord Jesus.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
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Posted by on March 7, 2019 in resurrection

 

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Friends Don’t Let Friends . . . Die! (A Study of John 11) Part 22

Let’s look at our next section of this amazing miracle …

41 So they took away the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. 42 I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me.”

43 When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” 44 The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face.

Jesus said to them, “Take off the grave clothes and let him go.”

45 Therefore many of the Jews who had come to visit Mary, and had seen what Jesus did, believed in him. 46 But some of them went to the Pharisees and told them what Jesus had done. 47 Then the chief priests and the Pharisees called a meeting of the Sanhedrin.

“What are we accomplishing?” they asked. “Here is this man performing many signs. 48 If we let him go on like this, everyone will believe in him, and then the Romans will come and take away both our temple and our nation.”

49 Then one of them, named Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, spoke up, “You know nothing at all! 50 You do not realize that it is better for you that one man die for the people than that the whole nation perish.”

Jesus has the onlookers get involved in this resurrection event. He commands them, “Take off the grave clothes and let him go.” (v. 44).

I’m sure it is a sacrilege to try to imagine that scene in the following way, but I can’t help it. I picture Lazarus having to spin around so that the burial wrappings could be removed. Some of you have played that game in which you hold the small end of a baseball bat and put the large end on the ground and you spin around three times real fast and then let go of the bat and promptly stagger around like you’re drunk and you then fall to the ground? That’s how I picture what’s happened to the new Lazarus!

He is now free. He is now alive again. He is now, uh, naked. Mostly. But who cares about propriety at such a time as this? He’s back with his family. I wonder what he experienced just before Jesus raised him from the dead? (to be continued)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
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Posted by on November 29, 2017 in resurrection

 

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A Bell-Free Blog: What the Resurrection of Jesus Means to Me

“The resurrection is one of the most wicked, vicious, heartless hoaxes ever foisted upon the minds of men, or it is the most fantastic fact of history.”  Today is resurrection Sunday.  What difference should the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ make in my life?

I understand that the early believers did not greet each other by reciting recent sports scores, but by one of them saying, “He is RISEN!”   And the other responding, “He is risen INDEED!”  But why do we hear so few sermons on Christ’s resurrection during the year — and it seems to be the only theme on a Sunday like today?

Paul’s treatise on Christ’s resurrection in I Corinthians 15 is well-known.  That document alone demolishes foolish views like the disciples stole the body, or Jesus’ resurrection appearances were merely hallucinations, or the disciples went to the wrong tomb on that Easter morn.

“He’s risen in MY heart!”

I Corinthians 15 shoots down the silly notion that what really matters is that “Jesus lives in my heart” (which even the Jesus seminar member Marcus Borg says!).  Robert Funk, Borg’s predecessor, stated that the bodily resurrection of Jesus didn’t happen and that the body was most likely eaten by dogs.

Jesus’ bodily resurrection demonstrates the Father’s approval of the Son’s work, proves that Jesus kept His word about “taking back His life again,” and guarantees our own resurrections (for those who have trusted Him as Savior).   The evidences of the “almost-empty” tomb (the graveclothes were left), the resurrection appearances, and the bold preaching of the disciples in the very city in which their Master was executed reminds us that we have good and sufficient reasons to believe the Gospel — even at the

THE ALMOST EMPTY TOMB

cost of our own lives!

Discussion Questions:  Why is the resurrection of Jesus important to YOU?  If you really believe He rose from the dead, what differences should that make in your life and mine?

 

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