The simple message of the Bible, our lives and the world to come is that the Lord Jesus rose from the dead. This is the foundation of the Gospel and our faith according to I Corinthians 15. Christ is risen, He is risen indeed!!! As Easter/First Fruits arrive this Sunday, I want to share a few thoughts about the Resurrection that I hope will stir our hearts toward seeing the greatness and majesty of our Lord in the Empty Tomb and our modern lives today.
When the disciples looked into the Lord's Empty Tomb, they just saw the grave clothes that our Lord had left behind. What really happened in there? The answer, of course, is that our Lord's body passed right through His burial garments and left them behind. Nothing like that had ever happened in the history of the world! Our Lord's body also passed through the solid rock wall of the tomb as well. How is this possible? How is it possible for matter to vanish and pass through other matter? These are some of the questions of Resurrection morning and today. All these hard questions are relevant and important because what happened to our Lord's body is exactly what will happen to our bodies one day soon when our Resurrection Day arrives.
The amazing thing to me is that we have some answers now about how such things are even possible. These answers may not be exactly what happened, but they do point out that even science and the modern technology we use every day has some insight on the subject. This fact, in and of itself is amazing! After all, scientific facts and the laws of physics we use in our technology are never opposed to the Lord and His world. True science will always uphold what the Lord does in the world because science itself was created by the Lord as a witness to Him and His redeeming purposes for our lives. The Lord created the principles of the universe on which science is based to enhance our faith, not detract from it. How sad it is then when "intelligent people" seem to think Christianity is for "simple minded people." So many people reject the miracle of the Resurrection because it doesn't make sense to them or it seems to be some sort of "fairy tale."
When our Lord passed through His burial garments, His body turned into something else in that moment. A miracle of creation took place that turned flesh and blood into something different. The amazing thing about such a miracle is the fact that science today has already explained how such a thing is even possible. Scientists have discovered that matter can turn into energy and energy can turn to matter. This relationship is represented by the most famous scientific formula ever written, E=mc². This formula, discovered by Albert Einstein, tells us that it is possible for matter and energy to exchange with one another. In other words, matter can vanish and be turned into energy and energy can turn into matter in a moment of time. This reality is not faith....it is science!
What many people may have forgotten today is that this scientific principle is the foundation of the atomic age. All our nuclear power is based on the idea that matter such as plutonium or uranium can be turned into energy. When matter is turned into energy it just disappears. When matter is turned into energy it can pass through things like burial clothes, rock tombs, walls or anything else. Energy is able to move and act very differently than matter when it comes to time and space. Confused? Hang in there.
This amazing principle of matter turning into energy and moving through matter is seen through our modern cell phone technology. Have you ever made a cell phone call from inside a closed room, an elevator, a bathroom? How do we explain that every day miracle of technology that allows our lives to pass through a closed or locked room? Cell phones convert our physical voices into energy that passes through matter and can travel around the world in seconds. That every day fact is an article of science not faith. And yet, I still find it incredible that I can call and talk to someone in another country from my locked basement with NO wires or physically discernable way to connect me to that country or anywhere. This modern miracle of technology is not a violation of the laws of Nature; rather it is a confirmation of them. The Lord of Nature and science used those same laws to raise the Lord Jesus Christ from the dead. Our Lord's dead body was simply changed from flesh and blood to another form so it could pass through His graves clothes and rock tomb to share hope with the entire world. Our Lord's body was simply transformed from something dead to something alive that was fashioned for eternity and the life to come.
You see this same principle was at work when the universe was created. The Bible tells us that the Lord created everything out of nothing. When the Lord first created the universe, the Lord simply had a powerful idea of what He wanted to do. The Lord's beginning intent or energy was turned into matter and the world as we know it came to be. The Bible tells it like this in Genesis 1:1-2,
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. And God said, "Let there be light," and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. God called the light "day", and the darkness he called "night". And there was evening, and there was morning--the first day.
The Lord used His laws of physics and Nature to create everything from the beginning. It was these same laws that were used when the Lord began to recreate our fallen world by raising the Lord Jesus from the dead. Our Lord's Resurrection was a new Genesis, a new beginning for the world and all of us as His New Creation.
Now the Apostles never met Albert Einstein and didn't know anything about science or physics. The only thing they knew was that their Lord was raised from the dead and His Resurrected Body was something entirely new that had never been seen before. In a similar way, none of us today will fully understand all the things that made the Resurrection of our Lord happen. However, the one thing every Christian should joyfully believe is that our Lord Jesus is risen and alive forevermore. Understanding science and the principles of physics can't save us, but Jesus can. His atoning death on the Cross and glorious Resurrection three days later is proof positive that sin has been forgiven and that our Lord fulfilled and completed His glorious work of redemption. The Bible puts it this way in Romans 4:25,
He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.
On this glorious Easter weekend, the Resurrection powerfully declares that death, sin and Hell have been conquered by our Lord's victory over the grave. The Lord Jesus is calling out to this broken, sinful and fallen world from inside of that Empty Tomb that He is alive forevermore. Our Lord isn't using a cell phone and His call is not collect. Our Lord is calling us to discover His love, grace and Resurrection hope for new life in this world and the world to come. Our Lord's Resurrection call and message is contained in His Word and is being transmitted by the pulpits and people of faith from around the world. The Lord may even use a cell phone this year to transmit His message to others or invite someone to come and hear about the Resurrection in person. Long after all our cell phones pass away, the one, lasting message of the Gospel and the Empty Tomb will be shared and enjoyed by the Lord's people forever.
So, whether we are in church tomorrow or hear the good news from a cell phone call or some other form of technology, the message remains eternally the same....Christ is Risen, He is Risen Indeed!!!