Thursday, March 27, 2008

The Sure Hope of the Resurrection

Alleluia, Christ is risen! The resurrection is the ultimate proof of the reality of our faith. If Christ is not risen, then we are still in our sins and we have no hope. So says St. Paul in the 15th chapter of his first letter to the Corinthian Church. It is true. The resurrection is what all our faith is staked on.

After the long fast of Lent, we now find ourselves in the celebration of the resurrection. It is easy to be carried away with the celebrating. But there is still real life to live out. And there we are reminded that it is as we live crucified that we attain to a better resurrection.

The resurrection is the key to life. How do we know that there will be glory, triumph, and reward in the end? Because of the resurrection. If Christ lives, then we who live in Him will live also.

Fear dominates our lives in this world. We worry if we will have enough food, clothing, or shelter. For those of us who are more affluent, we wonder how our stocks are performing, or the strength of our company. We worry about growing old, or the possibility of diseases like cancer. Then there are fears over our security. We buy guns, have alarms in our homes, and keep an anxious eye focused on international affairs, wondering if we will be attacked, or invaded by some foreign power. The resurrection is the true healing balm for all our fears.

If our hope is indeed in Christ, then we can learn to become dead to the things of this world and set our hearts firmly on what awaits us in heaven. Thus our Lord told us that where our treasure is, there our hearts will be also. We cannot have it both ways. Which are we living for- this world, or the next? With a hope steadfastly rooted in the resurrection, we can boldly stare death and mayhem in the face, knowing that whatever may befall us will be nothing in comparison with the resurrection. Since this transitory life is but a vapor, we choose rather to invest in eternity. Our sights are set on the kingdom that endures forever, not any that are passing away in this present world.

Is this pie in the sky? Is it a fairy tale after all? No! If you can find the body of Jesus, or logically explain away what happened that awesome day, then you will be able to legitimately thumb your nose at those of us foolish enough to believe in the resurrection. But if His rising is true, then everything He taught and promised is true as well. You have to have eyes of faith to see it, but if you do, the promise, and the prize is yours.

Yes, Jesus is indeed risen, and so we have hope. And there's nothing in this world able to overcome it!

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