In this episode of The Point, we explore the promises of Christ and the blessings of His resurrection.
That is the point of 1 Corinthians 15, as written by the Apostle Paul under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. Paul wrote:
But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen: And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain. Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not. For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins. Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable. But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. (1 Corinthians 15:13-20)
The Apostle Paul was addressing a skeptical doctrine that was infiltrating the Corinthian church that there is no resurrection of the dead. In essence, the doctrine taught that, once you are dead, then you return to dust, never to rise again.
Paul’s objection to this heresy addressed the following key points:
- If there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ is not risen. This leads to the logical conclusion…
- If Christ is not risen, then Christianity is pointless. (Paul used the word, “vain,” meaning empty.) The premise of the Christian faith is that Christ rescued us from the judgment of God by taking that judgment upon Himself, dying on the cross, and then rising again to new life, conquering the grave and making eternal salvation possible to all those who believe.
- If there is no resurrection, then there’s no judgment of God, hence no need for Christ to die.
- If there is no resurrection, then Christ did not rise again, thus the grave still holds the final victory over us, and we have no hope for an eternity in Heaven beyond this life.
- If that’s the case, then we are stuck in the here and now, with no hope for deliverance. This is as good as it gets. That being the case, “We are men most miserable.”
- But, Paul reminds us that Christ did rise from the grave, so there is deliverance from God’s judgment, deliverance from death, and the hope of eternal life in His perfect Kingdom for all who believe.
The importance of the resurrection to the Christian faith is so paramount, that the Apostle Paul tied belief in the resurrection of Jesus Christ to the salvation of the believers (Romans 10:9-10).
This Sunday, we commemorate and celebrate the single most important event in Christian, and world, history. We celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
The Community Sunrise Service will be held at 7 am Sunday morning at the Depot Pavilion in downtown Brownwood. Come worship with us, and be a part of a truly moving experience.
Those who reject Christianity do so for a number of reasons. Some believe that to accept the Christian faith is to reject logic and intellect. Others reject the Christian faith due to perceived hypocrisies among Christians. One of the biggest reasons for rejecting Christianity is a disbelief in the miraculous events recorded in scripture.
Such was the stumblingblock for Lee Strobel, an investigative reporter for the Chicago Tribune. A self-described atheist, Strobel rejected Christian beliefs as superstition, fairy tales, and logic defying crutches that served as emotional supports for unstable people.
Stobel’s assessment of Christianity was challenged, however, when his wife, Leslie, professed her faith in Christ during a service at the Willow Creek Community Church in Chicago. Troubled by his wife’s new adherence to what he thought was a superstition, Strobel set out to disprove the most important doctrine of Christianity, the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Strobel chronicled this journey in his book, The Case for Christ, now a motion picture that has been released on 1,200 screens nationwide.
Instead of disproving Christianity, Strobel stumbled upon a mountain of evidence that supported the fact that the resurrection of Jesus Christ really existed. Such evidence included thousands of manuscripts of the New Testament, eye-witness accounts of the resurrection of Christ, historical documentation, and medical evidence of the cruelty of the beatings Christ endured, and the cruelty of crucifixion.
When standard journalistic investigation, historical research, and logical processes were employed, the resurrection stood on its merit. It really happened. Confronted with this truth, Strobel was forced to face the fact that, in this instance, he was wrong. He repented and accepted Jesus Christ as His personal savior.
The resurrection indeed happened. It is proven by the empty tomb, the multiple eye-witnesses to seeing a resurrected Christ (including the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, the testimony of the disciples, the fact that the Apostle Paul was confronted on the road to Damascus by the resurrected Christ, the testimony of the 500 mentioned in 1 Corinthians 15, and the fact that resurrection is the only logical explanation for sightings of Christ post-crucifixion.)
The resurrection is central to the Christian faith, because it is through the resurrection that Christ conquered the grave so that we can all be resurrected when the Lord establishes His Kingdom on this earth. It is through the resurrection that Christ rose to be at the right hand of the throne of God, where He secures our salvation through his intercession (advocacy) on our behalf. It is through the resurrection that we have assurance that we have eternal life through Jesus Christ.
Sunday morning, we will celebrate the resurrection of Christ during our Easter Sunrise Service, which will be held at 7 am Sunday at the Depot Pavilion in downtown Brownwood. Come worship with us.