“But now is Christ risen from the dead and become the first fruits of those who sleep.” (I Corinthians 15:20)
Even those who have served God all their lives need reminding of the importance of the resurrection of Jesus sometimes. Those new to the faith enjoy learning the full dimensions of the new life they have received in Christ.
Here are an even dozen aspects of the resurrection of Jesus that instruct our minds, inspire our hearts and inform us all…
1. No one expected Jesus to rise from the dead.
Jesus’ resurrection was as much a shock to the disciples as His death had been.
Thomas, known forever as the doubter, was merely voicing what most of them felt when he declared he would not believe in the risen Lord until he had done his own thorough investigation (see John 20).
2. Everyone doubted it at first. Everyone.
Matthew 28:17 says, “And when they saw Him, they worshiped Him. But some were doubtful.” Only one devoted to the whole truth would include such an incriminating statement in his narrative.
Thank you, Matthew. (And thank you, Holy Spirit.)
3. Only later, after the disciples thought it through and talked it out, did they recall that Jesus had predicted His death and resurrection several times.
The gospels tell of three separate times Jesus tried to prepare the disciples for this world-changing event that lay just ahead. See Mark 8:31-32; 9:31-32; and 10:33-34. Since they had their minds made up that He was following an entirely different agenda, none of this made sense and their minds refused to accept it. Only later did it fit.
Mark 9:9-10 speaks of the Lord’s conversation with James, John and Peter as they descended the Mount of Transfiguration. “And as they were coming down from the mountain, He gave them orders not to relate to anyone what they had seen until the Son of Man should rise from the dead. And they seized upon that statement, discussing with one another what rising from the dead might mean.”
4. The stone was rolled away from the entrance to the tomb NOT to let Jesus out.
But to let the disciples in.
The angel said, “Come see the place where He lay.”