raised from the dead according to my gospel."
-II Tim. 2:8
When the Apostle of the Gentiles declared that Jesus Christ was "raised from the dead according to my gospel" he made it imperative that we understand just what this tremendous event means to us.
Because of limited space, we offer the following brief (and admittedly incomplete) outline, and trust our readers will use it as a springboard to look further into this important truth. The resurrection of Jesus Christ.
"For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;
"And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures" (I Cor. 15:3,4).
The resurrection of Christ is not fiction--His body was not stolen by His followers, nor did He somehow revive from a death-like coma and walk away by Himself. Further, the resurrection of Christ is not a fable--the modernist claim that He "lives on" in the "continuation of the spiritual principles He taught" is the real "religion myth"!
No, the resurrection of Christ is a fact of history to be accepted and believed. The "many infallible proofs" (Acts 1:3) of His resurrection make it an event as thoroughly and historically validated as any in past history.
Our faith does not rest on a coffin lid! The resurrection of Jesus Christ is a fact to be believed. It also
"...if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved" (Rom. 10:9).
Our faith is to rest in the fact of the resurrection of Christ-not simply in the historic reality but also in the divinely revealed meaning of this event:
"[Christ] was delivered for our offences, and was RAISED AGAIN FOR OUR JUSTIFICATION" (Rom. 4:25).
The reality of Christ's resurrection declares the finality of the work of Calvary. When "Christ died for our sins, "He thoroughly put away sin, paying its penalty in full. Thus, the debt of sin having been paid, death could not hold Him. His resurrection is, as it were, the receipt that declares: "Paid in full!"
It is because the shed blood of Christ fully and completely paid for sin that Jesus Christ could be raised from the dead--and thus, with a perfect redemption accomplished and attested to, we can be declared righteous in Him.