By Richard Hayes, District Representative, Southwest
The Arrival of Spring
Ellen and I live in central California. Right now, just days before Resurrection Sunday, we see vivid reminders everywhere that spring is here. The beauty of creation is abundantly evident wherever we look. Vegetation has not only come back to life, but wildflowers and trees bloom profusely as the moist fertile soil and warm sun combine to provide just the right conditions for vegetation to flourish.
The beauty that spring brings reminds us of life in general, but also the resurrecting of what was dormant bursting forth into new life.
Lessons in the Resurrection
Creation in this sense provides an object lesson of sorts for the resurrection of Jesus Christ. As Easter Sunday quickly approaches we are reminded of the reality that the tomb was not merely discovered empty, as important as that fact is, rather, the risen Jesus was seen by those who were closest to Him.
Noted biblical scholar F.F. Bruce writes, When Christians affirm their belief in the resurrection of Christ, they are not referring primarily to the fact that His tomb was found empty. They are referring to the fact that, on that first day of the week, Jesus appeared to several of His disciples alive again – alive not merely for a further brief spell but alive for evermore.”
As we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ as churches and families, we find ourselves reminded that as we proclaim and celebrate the historical certainty of Jesus’ resurrection. We are reminded as well that Jesus’ resurrection is the forerunner or first fruits of all those who have placed their faith in Him, and thus a reminder of our own resurrection (I Corinthians 15:23).
Christian apologist William Lane Craig writes, “Against the dark background of modern man’s despair, the Christian proclamation of the resurrection is a bright light of hope. The earliest Christians saw Jesus’ resurrection as both the vindication of His personal claims and the harbinger of our own resurrection to eternal life.”
Easter Sunday–Resurrection Day—serves as a vivid reminder that because we have placed our faith in Jesus Christ we too have eternal life and we too look forward with anticipation to resurrection (I Corinthians 15:35-49).