The Victory of Life over death
by Shiju Vincent
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ďO Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory? The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.Ē (1 Cor. 15:55-57 NKJV) ďHe is not here; He has risen! Remember how He told you, while He was still with you in Galilee: The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.Ē(Lk. 24:6, 7 NIV)
The Glorious Message of Easter announces to man: There is no need to fear death anymore. What is death? Many people think that with death, life is finished. But the Bible teaches us that death is just the separation of human spirit from the body. Spiritual death came upon mankind when Adam and his wife ate the forbidden fruit. Physical death is the wages of sin. Either we go to heaven or to hell after our death. Before Christ conquered death, its fear ruled the hearts of the kings as well as slaves. In the Old Testament times, the psalmist declared that the death of Godís devoted servants is precious before Him. But it was only after Christís resurrection that death lost its dominion and power over mankind. But we definitely need to welcome, accept and apply this truth into our lives to declare boldly that death has no part in us.
Physical death came because of sin or disobedience. Why then do children of God, who are actually justified and made righteous by the blood of the Lamb, die? Our death is not at all the wages of sin, for when now we are not sinners after being redeemed and cleansed by the blood of the Lamb, how can we get its wages? The mystery is that God has appointed a time of separation of spirit from body for all individuals. We are not made to live with our physical bodies for eternity. We were made to accomplish Godís purpose for each one of us individually and after completing our earthly responsibilities successfully, be with God in heaven for eternity. For this reason alone, does a child of God die physically.
What good does Christís resurrection bring to our lives? Do we only get escape from the power of death? Is only the fear of death removed from our minds? There is a much more joyful news: When Jesus will come down from heaven, the dead in Christ will rise. (1 Thess. 4:16) The Holy Spirit of God who raised Christ from the dead will raise us too, provided we live a life guided and led by the Holy Spirit. So the message of Easter is not just for a particular time-period, but its end result can be seen only when Christ comes to take His redeemed to heaven.
Jesus Christ did not sigh over the temporary physical pain that He underwent. But foreseeing the upcoming consequence of His sacrifice, He was completely satisfied when He was beaten, insulted and nailed on the cross. There was not a sign of dissatisfaction in His heart. It is because He could foresee that sin, curse, sickness and death can be won only by His death, that He was able to challenge the power of death and win the battle.
Friend, in what areas in your life do you feel the fear of death trying to overcome you? Do you feel you are not righteous enough to taste the power of Easter? Do you say that your laziness and failures stop you from experiencing the power of The Resurrection? Do you lament that you do not have a prestige in society and so you cannot have share in the upcoming resurrection of the righteous? Do you feel you are not spiritually perfect in order to declare 1 Corinthians 15:55?
No, you do not need to worry in these things. It is not your effort, but Christís action that helps you live a victorious life. Stop trying to win the battle by yourself, for it is already won. We do not need to do anything, in fact we canít do anything to overcome death. We just need to accept this victory into our lives.
After doing so, we need to walk a life of obedience before God. The obedience of God the Son is the only perfect example to be followed. Just faith is not enough, for as the Apostle James says, faith without actions (obedience) is dead. If we only believe in the message of Easter and not obey God, our faith remains dead.
So, start living the victorious Christian life. Jesus Christ rose from the dead in order that His children be bold and daring even before death. We can do this only if we are content that we are doing the will of our Heavenly Father while living our physical life. This feeling of contentment is strengthened when we read words of hope from the Bible and spend time with God. Remember, Life has won over death!
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