Easter! It is the oldest of Christian festivals. It is the most joyous for those who are well grounded in the knowledge of Christ. The early Christians were often in sadness because they were persecuted and in danger of their life; but on Easter day they lifted up their heads; their hearts were filled with joy. They embraced each other, crying out to one another: “The Lord is risen!” ” He is risen indeed.” This is the most glorious news contained in the entire Gospel. Jesus who died and paid the debt demanded by the Law, restored life by His resurrection. He lives to die no more and has become “the Author of salvation unto all them that obey Him” (Hebrews 5:9).
Martin Luther wrote on the wall of his room “He lives! He lives!” to remind himself daily that Jesus the promised Messiah came and fulfilled the will of His Father. He suffered and died, but lives as our Savior, King, and Advocate with the Father. When the morning sun was rising and chasing away the shadows of night, Jesus rose from the dead and chased away the shadows of death. He promises in His Word, “Because I live, ye shall live also” (John 14:19).
Christ’s resurrection, itself an attested historical event, is conclusive evidence that God has reconciled the world unto Himself. It is the foundation of the Church, the life and breath of each believing heart that pilgrims through this life, but yearns for something better. “Here we have no continuing city, but we seek the one to come” (Hebrews 13:14). That is the Christian faith. The event of Easter makes it real, and guarantees that the believer in Jesus shall come to the better one. Human existence is in reality one long procession to the cemetery. That is reality. But for those who are alive in Christ the procession is but a rite of passage for Jesus says, ” He that lives and believes in Me shall never die” (John 11:26).