Have you ever wondered why the churches in America tend to be so weak? Why is the church so weak when the message we carry is incredibly strong and powerful?
These days, we tend to be ineffective in being involved in public discourse and having a voice of mercy and grace in the midst of the challenges that we face. For many in the church of America, the practice of boldly proclaiming the resurrection of Jesus, that Jesus is alive, has become irrelevant. It has no voice. We go to church and we sing hymns about the resurrection and we talk to each other about the fact that Christ has risen and how His resurrection is so real and powerful, but it ends there.
The “dunamis” power of God that changes lives is the resurrection power of God. And this is what many churches and even believers are missing out today.
The Resurrection of Jesus Brings Comfort and Mockery
“But even if you suffer for doing what is right, God will reward you for it. So don’t worry or be afraid of their threats. 15 Instead, you must worship Christ as Lord of your life. And if someone asks about your hope as a believer, always be ready to explain it.” - 1 Peter 3: 14-15
The teaching that Jesus is the resurrection and the life has always been a conundrum, a disturbing, disruptive proclamation. We can't be lukewarm with this teaching. We either say it's really real or it's not. Paul even talked about it in his letters in 1 Peter 3, that the resurrection gives baptism power. In the first century and even today, the declaration that Jesus is alive and He is the resurrection brings profound comfort to those who follow Jesus. As we face our own death, and as we watch friends and loved ones face theirs, the fact that Jesus rose from the dead gives us comfort. Even as we struggle with the death of dreams and relationships and with the grief that we feel, we are comforted to know that one day Jesus will return and make all things new. Why? Because He is alive and the only reason He hasn't come back now is because He's so patient in waiting for the church to move, so that all people will know that Jesus is exactly who He says He is.
On the other hand, the message that Jesus is the resurrection and the life also brings mockery and even disdain to some. In Acts 4, it was specifically the message that Jesus rose from the dead that disturbed the priests and the Sadducees. Christians and believers are being looked down on and marked as silly. We're being questioned about Christ's resurrection and its proof. We're even told not to share it. We are told not to mention Jesus as part of our faith in our schools. And we shouldn't be surprised! Because the truth works this way. The truth is always met with discomfort and disdain.
Sharing the Reality of Jesus’ Resurrection
Yet in all these, we have been given the same message that Peter was given. Jesus lives and He is the resurrection and the life. This message itself is the power of God to transform a human soul and it also is the power to strengthen us in our own weakness. It is the power source for our mission to love the world.
And what is our mission? To connect people to a life in Jesus. To love. To serve. To teach. To listen. To confirm. To boldly declare. To creatively share the reality of Jesus to our world, and we start right in our own homes. From there, we emanate to our neighborhoods, to our communities, to the country, and to the world.
The truth of Jesus’ resurrection is undeniable. And sharing that Jesus is the resurrection and life is our great privilege. Jesus is real. There is no obstacle that can defeat us from proclaiming this truth. Jesus already defeated death, the final hurdle that can get in the way of our mission. The teaching about the resurrection power of Christ is a core teaching of our faith. Jesus did not just die on the cross and disappear. He didn't just rise from the dead and disappear. He's actually alive today and He's sitting on the throne at the Father's right hand. He is involved, moving in our communities and among His people.
He is very much alive and we need to keep sharing this truth to the world. Keep sharing Jesus.