Resurrection From The Dead

Consider this description of our God:  Rom 4:17b “God, who gives life to the dead and calls those things which do not exist as though they did.”

God is the only one who can give life to the dead.  We have several instances in the Bible of individuals coming back to life.  In 1 Kings 17, we read about the widow of Zarephath.  Her son stopped breathing and she sent for the prophet Elijah.  1 Kings 17:21-22 “And he stretched himself out on the child three times, and cried out to the Lord and said, ‘O Lord my God, I pray, let this child’s soul come back to him.’  Then the Lord heard the voice of Elijah; and the soul of the child came back to him, and he revived.”

In 2 Kings 4 we read of the son of the Shunammite woman who died.  The prophet Elisha prayed to God, lay on the child and put his mouth on his mouth, his eyes on his eyes, and his hands on his hands and stretched himself out on the child and God returned him to life.

In Mark 5 we read how Jairus, a synagogue ruler, had a daughter who died and Jesus raised her to life.  In Luke 7 we read of a widow of Nain whose son died.  Luke 7:14-15 “Then He came and touched the open coffin, and those who carried him stood still.  And He said, ‘Young man, I say to you, arise.’  So he who was dead sat up and began to speak. And He presented him to his mother.”

In John 11 we read how Lazarus died and had been dead for four days.  Jesus came to give him life.  John 11:43b-44 “He cried with a loud voice, ‘Lazarus, come forth!’  And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with graveclothes, and his face was wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, ‘Loose him, and let him go.’”

One of the central stories of the Bible is the resurrection of Jesus.  On the day of Pentecost, the apostle Peter stood up and spoke about Jesus: Acts 2:23-24 “Him, being delivered by the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God, you have taken by lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death; whom God raised up, having loosed the pains of death, because it was not possible that He should be held by it.”

In Athens, the apostle Paul stood up in the Areopagus and preached to the people there.  He concluded by saying:  Acts 17:30-32 “’Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent,  because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained. He has given assurance of this to all by raising Him from the dead.’ And when they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some mocked, while others said, ‘We will hear you again on this matter.’”  Why did some mock?  Because no one had ever witnessed the resurrection of a dead person; they thought it impossible.  Why did others want to hear again about this matter?   Because we all want to believe that there is more to life than what we see; that when we die there is hope for more to come.

God alone has the power of resurrection.  He proved that there is a resurrection by raising Jesus from the Dead.  Existence does not end at physical death.  Don’t give up your hope in a resurrection.  Listen also to the command to repent so you will be ready when your time comes.

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