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Summary: By placing our faith in Jesus Christ, we can experience the life-giving power of Christ’s resurrection not only after our death, but in our lives this very day.

THE LOVE THAT JESUS HAS FOR US CAN BRING US A WHOLE NEW PERSPECTIVE TO THE RESURRECTION. BECAUSE OF JESUS CHRIST WE CAN EXPERIENCE HIS RESURRECTION EVEN BEFORE WE PHYSICALLY DIE.

AS THE RESURRECTION AND THE LIFE, JESUS DEFEATS DEATH IN THE FUTURE AND IN THE PRESENT. THE POWER OF DEATH TO SEPARATE PEOPLE FROM GOD IS REDUCED TO NOTHING BY THE PRESENCE OF THE POWER OF GOD IN JESUS. THIS DEFEAT IS NO LONGER "JUST" A PROMISE; IT IS A REALITY!

JESUS DEFEATS THE POWER OF DEATH BECAUSE IN HIM THE WORLD MEETS THE POWER OF THE LOVE OF GOD INCARNATE. ROMANS 8:39, …NOTHING IN ALL CREATION WILL EVER BE ABLE TO SEPARATE US FROM THE LOVE OF GOD THAT IS REVEALED IN CHRIST JESUS OUR LORD."

GOD’S FULL SHARING OF POWER OVER LIFE AND DEATH WITH JESUS IS AN EXPRESSION OF GOD’S LOVE FOR JESUS AND FOR THE WORLD.

BECAUSE GOD LOVES JESUS, GOD HAS GIVEN ALL THINGS TO HIM, THAT CULMINATES IN THE POWER OVER LIFE AND DEATH. JOHN 3:35, "THE FATHER LOVES HIS SON, AND HE HAS GIVEN HIM AUTHORITY OVER EVERYTHING."

BECAUSE GOD LOVES JESUS, GOD HAS GIVEN HIM THE GLORY THAT IS REVEALED IN THE RAISING OF LAZARUS, IN THE DEFEAT OF DEATH.

BECAUSE GOD LOVES THE WORLD, GOD GIVES JESUS TO THE WORLD FOR ITS SALVATION. JOHN 3:16-17, "FOR GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD THAT HE GAVE HIS ONLY SON, SO THAT EVERYONE WHO BELIEVES IN HIM WILL NOT PERISH BUT HAVE ETERNAL LIFE. GOD DID NOT SEND HIS SON INTO THE WORLD TO CONDEMN IT, BUT TO SAVE IT."

THE REASON JESUS BECAME SALVATION FOR THE WORLD WAS SO THAT THE WORLD MIGHT COME TO KNOW FULLY GOD’S LOVE FOR IT AND LIVE GROUNDED IN THAT LOVE.

IN JOHN 17:23, JESUS SAID, "I IN THEM AND YOU IN ME, ALL BEING PERFECTED INTO ONE. THEN THE WORLD WILL KNOW THAT YOU SENT ME AND WILL UNDERSTAND THAT YOU LOVE THEM AS MUCH AS YOU LOVE ME."

JESUS’ OWN DEATH IS A MEASURE OF THIS LOVE BECAUSE IN IT, JESUS’ POWER AS THE RESURRECTION AND THE LIFE COMES TO ITS FULLEST EXPRESSION. JOHN 10:17, THE FATHER LOVES ME BECAUSE I LAY DOWN MY LIFE THAT I MAY HAVE IT BACK AGAIN." JOHN 15:12, "I COMMAND YOU TO LOVE EACH OTHER IN THE SAME WAY THAT I LOVE YOU."

BECAUSE OF THESE SPIRITUAL TRUTHS AND THE REALITIES THEY CAN BE FOR OUR LIVES, JESUS WAS ABLE TO PROCLAIM, "I AM THE RESURRECTION AND THE LIFE. THOSE WHO BELIEVE IN ME, EVEN THOUGH THEY DIE, WILL LIVE, AND EVERYONE WHO LIVES AND BELIEVES IN ME WILL NEVER DIE."

THESE STATEMENTS ARE THE MOST FAR-REACHING PROMISES ANYWHERE IN THE GOSPELS OF WHAT AN INTIMATE AND PERSONAL RELATIONSHIP WITH JESUS OFFERS TO THOSE WHO WILL EMBRACE IT WHOLE-HEARTILY.

BY MAKING THESE PROMISES TO US, JESUS WAS NOT GIVING US CHEAP WORDS OF HOPE. JESUS WAS OFFERING A VISION OF LIFE TO US IN WHICH OUR DAYS WOULD NOT HAVE TO BE OVERCOME BY THE INEVITABLE POWER OF DEATH, BUT INSTEAD SET FREE BY THE PROMISE OF LIFE WITH GOD.

JESUS WAS OFFERING TO US A VISION OF LIFE IN WHICH WE CAN REMAIN IN THE FULL PRESENCE OF GOD DURING LIFE AS WELL AS AFTER DEATH. BECAUSE OF JESUS THE PHYSICAL REALITY OF DEATH IS DENIED POWER OVER OUR LIVES, AS IS THE SPIRITUAL REALITY OF DEATH WIPED AWAY.

WHAT I FIND INTERESTING ABOUT ALL THESE PROMISES IS THAT THEY COME AS AN INVITATION. THE WAY TO EXPERIENCE THE POWER OF GOD’S LOVE FOR THE WORLD THAT DEFEATS DEATH, TO RECEIVE THE PROMISES OF GOD AS THE REALITY OF GOD, IS TO BELIEVE IN JESUS CHRIST.

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