“They yet believed not for joy”

 

This moment, recorded in Luke 24:41, is surely one of the most joyous moments recorded in the scriptures. It is fitting that it should be so, because it is do with the most joyous fact in all history: the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ from the dead. Sometimes what we plainly see with our eyes is so wonderful, that our joy is more than our capacity to believe what we see. Our joy is so great that we are momentarily thrown into dumbfoundedness. The emphasis must be on the word ‘momentarily’, because the dumbfoundedness was only for a moment. It very quickly changed into joyous believing for those disciples, because┬áthey knew that He had truly died on that accursed cross, and that He had been laid in the grave. Now there He was standing before them, showing them His wounds and proving beyond doubt that He was no spirit, but ‘flesh and bones’.

Why do christians rejoice so much in the resurrection of Christ? It is because it is the ‘linchpin’ of christianity. The linchpin is the most vital part of an axle. If it fails the axle is useless. The wheels just come off and the axle is of no use whatsoever. If the resurrection had not happened, the whole scheme of the christian faith would fall apart. This is no exaggeration, and if we have difficulty with giving such an important place to the resurrection, we should read 1 Corinthians 15: 13-20. Verse 17 reads, “If Christ be not raised, your faith is vain (empty), ye are yet in your sins”. Paul is not exaggerating. He is simply stating the facts of the matter. Even atheists recognise that the resurrection is fundamental to all christianity. That is why they have made such efforts to disprove it. However they are up against the evidence, that the resurrection is the best attested fact of the history of that time, sacred and secular. Let us then rejoice and be glad because Christ is risen indeed.

Now everything prophesied about Christ has fallen into place. The door to heaven is wide open for sinners. Now they can be RightWithGod through Jesus Christ. All things are now ready, and the invitation is unconditionally to all men everywhere, to repent of their sins, and come to Christ, and receive freely all that is in Him.

It is so wonderful to know that there is One at the right hand of God who says to us, “, Fear not: I am the first and the last: I am He that liveth and was dead: and, behold, I am alive for evermore; and have the keys of hell and of death”(Revelation1: 17-18). In rising from the dead, he has conquered death for all who will believe in Him; yes, they will die, but death will have no sting for them because it is not hell, but heaven’ which awaits them ‘on the other side’. No wonder Paul says in 1 Corinthians 15: 55, “O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?” Where indeed! For those who are RightWithGod through Jesus Christ, death and the grave are the access door to heaven.

 

 

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