Transformed by the
All of you Israelites, listen to my message: it’s about Jesus of Nazareth, a man whom God authenticated for you by performing in your presence powerful deeds, wonders, and signs through Him, just as you yourselves know. This man, Jesus, who came into your hands by God’s sure plan and advanced knowledge, you nailed to a cross and killed in collaboration with lawless outsiders. But God raised Jesus and unleashed Him from the agonizing birth pangs of death, for death could not possibly keep Jesus in its power.”
Acts 4:22–24, The Voice
Peter spoke these words to the crowds after the Holy Spirit had come on everyone at Pentecost. In a Spirit-filled scene of people acting strangely and speaking in a foreign tongue, Peter speaks words of Jesus’ raising from the dead–words of resurrection.
I don’t know about you, but I’ve often found Good Friday easier to get my head around than Easter Sunday. A man dying, even a God-in-human-flesh dying, is easier to comprehend than a man coming
back to life
death and walking again on earth. I have no frame of reference for that one! Yet resurrection is key. It is life-changing. It
life, and I have come to understand something of Easter Sunday as Jesus has raised to new life parts of who I am that I thought were irrevocably lost.
Resurrection is found when the powers of death and hell in this world–and in our lives–are broken and where new life is born. On the cross, Jesus gave himself over to the powers of hell that had enslaved the whole world to sin since the serpent in the garden. Through the resurrection, God–by his power–overcame death, broke its power and brought life. This power, the Holy Spirit, raised a man from death! Think on that a minute. It’s this very same power that is available to us as we walk with Jesus.
Resurrection is everything. It changes everything. It is life and it can transform
Alleluia, Christ is risen!
He is risen, indeed. Alleluia!
The Rev. Dr. Suse E. McBay
Associate for Adult Christian Education and Prayer Ministries