"He Has Risen!"
March 31, 2023, 9:42 AM

He Has Risen!

The Rev. Lou Tiscione, Pastor, Weatherford Presbyterian Church (PCA)

“He has risen; The Lord has risen indeed!” (Lk 24:6, 34). We read these words so easily. We even might hear them used to gather God’s people for worship on Easter Sunday. The angel told the women that Jesus was not in His tomb. The angel told the women Jesus was not among the dead, but the living. The bodily resurrection is the heart of Christianity. Paul wrote that Jesus was “delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification” (Rom 4:25). The resurrection of Jesus Christ is proof that the Father accepted His atoning work on the cross. Therefore, believers are able to stand before the holy God covered in His righteousness knowing that their sins are forgiven in Christ.

After Jesus opened the eyes of His disciples, they declared to each other, “The Lord has risen, indeed!” May you celebrate the bodily resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ with your church family.

What actually happened in time and history? There were many eyewitnesses of His empty tomb. There were over 500 witnesses of Jesus after His resurrection (1 Cor 15:6).

There is so much importance placed upon the event of Jesus’ resurrection that the Apostle Paul said that if it was not true, the entirety of the Christian faith was useless, mere hot air.

If Jesus did not get out of the grave; if His bodily resurrection was not an historic fact; He would be liar! C.S. Lewis offered three options for the truth of the Person and Work of Christ. He said Jesus was either a mad man, a liar, or He was who He said He was!

Christians must be clear on this fact, a dead man got out of his grave. The body buried was the body raised up. But there were some reported differences between Jesus’ earthly body and His resurrected body. He traveled long distances instantaneously. He was able to pass through locked doors. But He also ate food and was recognized by those to whom He spoke.

The Bible describes the resurrection body as an imperishable one. One that is glorious and perfect. One that is immortal. The Bible says that Jesus is the “first fruits” of those who have died.

The Christian Faith affirms that there is a man in heaven! His name is Lord Jesus. He has a physical, yet immortal and glorious body. He is declared to be very God and very Man, the only begotten of the Father, not made but eternally proceeding from the Father.

The truth of Jesus’ bodily resurrection gets even better. It gets better for all who belong to Him. The Apostle Paul said that Christians don’t grieve over death as others do who have no hope because we know that death is the entrance to paradise. When Jesus comes again, and He will, we will receive resurrection bodies like His.

As a minister of the gospel and a Christian, I would be remiss if I did not tell you the downside, and the downside is terrifying. The Bible says that all the dead will be raised on the last day, which is when Jesus returns. Those chosen by God have their names written in the “Lamb’s book of life”. By His grace alone, through Christ alone they will live in glory with Him forever. Alleluia! But (and this “but” has ultimate significance) those not covered by the perfect righteousness of Christ and His perfect sacrifice for sin will live forever in a physical state in the “lake of fire” which is eternal hell.

I urge you to take this event and the truth it affirms seriously. It is a matter of life and death. Jesus declared that this time between His first and second coming is the “year of the Lord’s favor” (Is 61:1-2a, Lk 4:19). This is the time that God has provided for men to receive His salvation through Jesus as He is offered in the gospel. This is the time to be spared the wrath of God.

My prayer for this Easter Sunday is that the Sovereign Spirit of God would give eyes to see and ears to hear the saving truth of Jesus Christ to all who would worship Him. May the sovereign Lord bless you and your family. May the Spirit of God work in concert with His word wherever it is faithfully preached and change lives for eternity. Have a happy Easter!