Sunday, April 16, 2017

Death's Obituary - Reflections On That First Easter Morning

Image result for jesus resurrection tomb

1 Corinthians 15:54-57 "But when this perishable will have put on the imperishable, and this mortal will have put on immortality, then will come about the saying that is written, “Death is swallowed up in victory. 55 O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” 56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law; 57 but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ."

Jesus Christ won the cosmic battle, resulting in Death's obituary

When one reads the above closing text of 1 Corinthians 15, it has the ring of an "obituary about death". Paul's whole point in 1 Corinthians 15 is to detail how we can know not only the historicity of Jesus' resurrection from the dead, but also its life-practical and eternal implications. When it is all said and done, what Christ achieved on that first Easter morning not only had historical significance and life-changing significance, but cosmic significance. When I say cosmic, I mean the supernatural war that the kingdom of darkness has waged against God since Lucifer's cosmic rebellion in heaven at the near beginning of creation (see Isaiah 14; Ezekiel 28). Satan's introduction of sin to Adam and Eve, and their compliance to his temptation, resulted in curse, sin and death on the whole physical creation (see Romans 5:12-21; 8:20-25). Would death have the final word?

In thinking on what Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 15:54-57, the thought came to mind concerning "death's obituary". We certainly find evidence of Christ's victory over death issuing forth on that first Easter morning, as found in Luke 24:1-8

"But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they came to the tomb bringing the spices which they had prepared. 2 And they found the stone rolled away from the tomb, 3 but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. 4 While they were perplexed about this, behold, two men suddenly stood near them in dazzling clothing; 5 and as the women were terrified and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, “Why do you seek the living One among the dead? 6 He is not here, but He has risen. Remember how He spoke to you while He was still in Galilee, 7 saying that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again.” 8 And they remembered His words."

Such words ought to always be remembered by Christ-followers everywhere when faced with doubt, fear or worry. As I prayed about what it must had been like on that first Easter morning, as well as what Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 15:54-57, this theme of "Death's Obituary" kept coming up in my heart. So, I shared this thought with my wife, and what she wrote below goes wonderfully with what Paul seems to be communicating in 1 Corinthians 15:54-57. I close today's post with her wonderful piece entitled: "Death's Obituary".

Death's Obituary - By Debi Smith

Death, formerly from the region of Hades. died on Easter morning surrounded by legions of stunned and terrified demons. Death lived a long life. Some of His biggest claims to fame included scaring and immobilizing people from living; killing people that thought they had tomorrow; and separating people from loved ones until Death decided it was there time as well. Death leaves behind no one to mourn him. There will be no services, but there will be a celebration held at a later date when Jesus Christ comes back to claim His followers. At that time, there will be a burial as Death will be cast into the lake of fire never to be seen again. In lieu of flowers or donations, we ask that everyone seek the Lord while He may be found and embrace eternal life."

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