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Risen With Christ

Apr 7, 2024 | Sunday Devotional

Romans 6:4 “As Christ was raised up from the dead…, even so we also should walk in the newness of life”.

When the dark day of Jesus’ crucifixion drew to a close, it seemed that the most wonderful of all lives had come to an end. For a few brief years, Christ had astounded the crowds and His followers with the wisdom of His teaching and the wonder of His miracles. But Jesus chose not to save Himself from the cross, and now His life was over. It seemed hopeless to expect more of Him now.

But hope returned that first resurrection morning. Shortly after dawn, Mary Magdalene told Peter and John that she and her friends had found the tomb empty. Artist Eugene Burnand painted Peter and John running to the tomb. In Burnand’s painting the men’s faces show contending emotions – anguish and relief, sorrow and surprise, despair and wonder – as they race toward the tomb. Their gaze is eagerly fixed forward, and their bending forms turn our attention to the empty sepulchre – and to a living Savior.

Christ still lives. And He still works the wonder of salvation in the lives of His followers. But many of us go from day to day as if He were still in the grave. How much better to be filled with expectation, looking beyond the empty tomb to the One who is in heaven to fill our lives with the power of His resurrection.

The day after resurrection celebration, the news paper headline read: “Entire World Celebrates The Risen Christ”. On the same page ran the stories about war and death, racial clashes and international conflicts. As I read the discouraging news, I thought, How contradictory! The headline declares that the entire world celebrates the risen Christ, but the balance of the page tells of people disregarding the blessing and grace Christ provided by His resurrection.

Apparently the millions of people around the world who flock to churches on resurrection day celebration don’t all live as they believe in the historical resurrection nor recognize its true significance.

Sometimes we simply go through the motions of expressing our faith without acknowledging our identification with Christ. In Romans 6, Paul said that we have been crucified with Christ and have died to sin. But we have also been raised with Christ so we can “walk in the newness of life”. That’s why the apostle said, “If then you were raised with Christ…set your mind on the things above, not on the things on the earth. (Col.3:1-2).

Having been crucified with Christ, we are now privileged to live for Him. As we do, we show our gratitude for being “risen with Christ”.

Jesus didn’t promise release from all the suffering in the world. But He did offer forgiveness, peace, eternal life, and a cross. Anything less than taking up that cross in serving Him is shallow allegiance.

The Door That Opened Christ’s Tomb Opens The Door To The Fullness Of Life. Only A Living Savior Could Rescue A Dying World. Jesus Is Alive.

Pastor Paul Okonkwo
Independent Baptist Bible Church (IBBC),
New Haven,
Enugu

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