Going Deeper 2/14/2019

The second reading for Epiphany 6...
1 Corinthians 15:12-20   Now if Christ is proclaimed as raised from the dead, how can some of you say there is no resurrection of the dead?  If there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ has not been raised; and if Christ has not been raised, then our proclamation has been in vain and your faith has been in vain.  We are even found to be misrepresenting God, because we testified of God that he raised Christ -- whom he did not raise if it is true that the dead are not raised.  For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised.  If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins.  Then those also who have died in Christ have perished.  If for this life only we have hoped in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied.  But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who have died.

The resurrection of Jesus the Christ was and is of utmost importance.  The resurrection proved that Jesus was not only the Messiah (His miracles/signs proved that), but also proved that Jesus was and is both God and Son of God.  And His resurrection signified that death has been defeated.

As Paul states, the fact of the matter is that without the resurrection our faith is futile and we "are still in your sins" and faced with death.  Yet Paul boldly proclaims "But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead."  Remember, Paul had encountered Jesus (or really vice versa) on the road to Damascus.  And also remember that Paul had repeatedly experienced the power of Jesus in His life and ministry.  This is why Paul can speak of the resurrection as "fact."

Few of us have encounters with Jesus as Paul had on the road to Damascus... but I believe we ought to continually be open to the possibility, open to the Spirit of God moving in whatever way God so desires.  But like Paul, we can experience the power of God at work more and more profoundly in our lives and our ministry.  As a matter of fact, this is something we do well to seek with all of our heart and soul and mind and strength.

You see, the resurrection of the dead is something we not only will experience in the future but is something we have already experienced and continue to experience in the present.  We cannot be so heavenly minded that we are of no earthly use!  God desires for His Kingdom to come to us and through us in the here and now.

May we seek the Kingdom together!

With You in Him,
Mark

   May 2019   
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