Day 8: Victory
“I am the resurrection and the life” (John 11:25).
Notice how personal this is.
Jesus doesn’t say, “I bring resurrection and life” but rather “I am the resurrection and the life.” In the presence of Jesus, death is no longer death. It is something else entirely. As Paul says later in the New Testament, death has now lost its sting, and the grave its victory.
How can that be? Death has been transformed by Jesus himself. Death for the believer is like lying down to a good long nap. The body may sleep a long time—for many years in fact—but in the end it will wake up. When Jesus raised Lazarus, it was a sample of what he will do for his people when he returns to the earth.
But it’s very personal with our Lord. The answer to death is not a resurrection. It’s Jesus himself. “I am the resurrection and the life.” No one can ever hope to escape death unless he is related to Jesus through personal faith.
Here’s something you may not have considered. Lazarus was raised from the dead only to die again later. Why did Jesus raise him? So that we would know that he could do it. After all, anyone could say “I am the resurrection and the life,” but only the Son of God could do what Jesus did.
In our journey through the Eight Days that Changed the World, we have come to Easter Sunday. It’s the day of victory because Jesus defeated death when he walked out of the tomb. That means you can be released from the fear of death. But there’s a question at the end of John 11:26 that you must answer. We generally overlook it, but it’s the key to what Jesus said. If you skip the question, then you miss the whole point.
Here’s the question: “Do you believe this?” That’s the supreme question of Easter. In the end truth must always become personal. So I ask you, “Do you believe Jesus is the resurrection and the life?” Wherever you are, right now, say it out loud: “Lord Jesus, I believe you are the resurrection and the Life!”
Our pilgrimage has come to an end. We started on Palm Sunday as the crowds welcomed our Lord to Jerusalem. We followed him through days of controversy. Finally, we went with Jesus to the cross and to the garden tomb. Now we follow him as he emerges from the grave, the undisputed victor over death.
These eight days changed the world forever. We finish with the words spoken today by Christians around the world:
He is risen! He is risen indeed!
Lord Jesus, what would we do without you? You alone have the words of eternal life. Thank you for giving us hope that death cannot destroy. Amen.
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