Summary: An exhortation to know the living Lord!
He Is Risen! Maranatha!
At this season, I am going to do something a little different than you might hear at your church or even on all the Christian radio and TV stations. After all, with a name like Maverick Ministries, what else could you expect from me? C];-)}|> This is basically for Christians since much of what you hear this Sunday will be directed towards the lost folks who show up on only Christmas and Easter. I think we need to do some reflection that is a little different than going through a documentary of what we already know and believe though we do need to be reminded of that from time to time.
I am not even sure which Scriptures I am going to use at this point. I want to focus on two statements that have been used since the 1st Century. They were the common greeting between Christians. D. L. Moody once preached a whole revival meeting on John 3:16 and I am going to do something similar. I want to break down these statements and make us think about what we often spout out of ritual only at Easter. I want to help us recapture some of the awe and wonder of these terms and allow them to breathe new life into us since they have lived for two millennia.
He, of course, refers to Jesus Christ. However, who is He to you? I do not want a historical context. I want a here and now context. Who is Jesus in you daily life? I hope you have a biblical view of whom He is. When Jesus asked His disciples who the people thought He was, there were several answers and they were all wrong. Only Peter got it right. (Mark 8:27) Many quote His name and claim to know Him and who He is, but they are way off base and sadly lost. As they are not aware or cognizant of whom He really is, He will not recognize them when they stand before Him and claim a relationship with Him and try to bribe Him with things done in His name. (Matt 7:21-23) That will be a truly sad day for them.
After we have the history and theology down pat, we need more than that as we walk through this life. All of us need something different, but we need Him. He is everything we need and we need everything that He is, but at times, we need a different manifestation of who He is more than His other characteristics. When we are confused, we need Him to be the Wonderful Counselor. When we are in grief, we need Him to be the God of all comfort. When we sin, we need Him to be our Advocate. When carnal or spiritual adversaries overwhelm us, we need Him to be the Captain of the Hosts! I lost my father when I was very young and often, I need Him as Abba, Father, or Daddy! Got the idea? Who is He to you? Not whom men say that He is, but who is He to you today and are you open to Him being whatever you need everyday for the rest of your life?
The next word is is. Not was or will be, but is. That is why He can be all that you need everyday and forever because He is. Many men were. Many men are. If He tarries, many men will be, but all men in the flesh will become were and no longer be is. He has always been is. Before the earth was formed He, as part of the Trinity, was the only one that was an is. When we travel down the paths of time and stand before Him either in death or transfigured in the Rapture/Resurrection. He will be there and thus is in the future. He is in the present and is in the past. He is. "I am that I am" is His way of putting His eternal Isness. Extremely deep as that is, He put it in five words without the help of a seminary-trained theologian. If one of them helped Him, it would have taken seven books with twelve alternative possibilities. I am so glad that He is brief and keeps it simple. Rejoice, for He is now and forever!
Risen from the dead and risen to the right hand of the Father where He ever lives to make intercession for us! In both the Old and New Testaments, we are told of men and women who were raised from the dead. So, what is so different about Christ? The others all died again and will have to be raised again unto immortality. He is risen to die no more and that is the surety of our being risen with Him one day. His rising is the proof that His sacrifice was accepted. If He had not risen, we would have had not any hope.