Monday, April 5, 2010

Encouragement: The Glorious Hope!

Many fond memories come to mind at this time of the year when many people all over the world are celebrating the so-called Easter with so much of tradition and ceremony. But for the true believer in the Bible, the most important experience is the glory of the resurrection.
What is there for the common man in this event? There's a lot! Yes, the glorious hope! Many have no hope beyond this short-lived life. And many have become so hopeless that they are not really living but existing! So the resurrection brings us a new hope-the glorious hope! Let's see what it means to us in our practical day-to-day living.
1. The fact of resurrection is the basis for the good news of salvation for mankind: As Apostle Paul affirms in 1Corinthians 15:3, the fact of Jesus' death, burial and resurrection are the foundation of our faith to save us from our sins! That's good news! There is no gospel at all if the Lord was not risen! The resurrection forms an integral part of the good news. Only His death is not sufficient. He needs to rise to make the gospel powerful to save those who believe.

2. The reality of resurrection makes our faith real and living: It is in vain to believe in a Savior if He is still in the grave (1 Cor. 15:16). But, praise God, we have a risen and living Lord upon whom our faith rests. So our faith is made real and meaningful because the Lord Jesus is risen from the dead. All those who are born into this world die. And it is finished with them. But not so with the Lord Jesus! He began a new way again- the way to Eternal Life.

3. The reality of Jesus' resurrection makes the future resurrection of all a possible reality : According to what the great apostle Paul clarifies and defends in 1Corinthians 15: 12-23, all those who believe in Christ, they will rise from the dead one day. Even those who do not believe, later to face judgement. The basis for this hope is the resurrection of Christ Himself. He is the firstfruits of all those who died. So the death is no longer the end of everything. But it is the gateway to a better and glorious world beyond the grave. It is this assurance that enables believers find comfort and peace in the departure of their dear ones. 1Thess.4: 13-18. Oh! What a glorious hope that we all can live again in glorious bodies and never see pain, suffering, or death again! We can know this for certain because the Lord rose in glorious body and ascended to heaven.

4. The reality of resurrection is the power behind transformed lives: There is no power on earth to change a person like Paul who was such a cruel, vicious, violent and fanatical man before he met Christ. His life was totally transformed by his encounter with the living Savior (1 cor. 15: 8). What was the power that brought about this miraculous change and moulded such a man into the greatest of apostles of all times? The power of resurrection! That's what Paul earnestly desired to know and experience in Philippians 3:10, 11.

Now, what is your hope? Do you have this glorious hope? Why not possess it now? It is available to all freely today. You can know and experience the power of resurrection in your own life if you commit your life to follow the Lord who died and rose again to give this glorious hope. It is possible for you to experience a miraculous transformation into a new person, as you trust in the living Savior to change you and give you a life worth living! HE IS ABLE BECAUSE HE IS ALIVE!

Be Encouraged

A.Othniel
(www.aothniel.net)

Letter # 13 (4. 4. 2010)