Num 4; 1 Cor 15; Psalm 95-96
Paul’s profound exposition of the Resurrection is utterly remarkable. As I have noted elsewhere, any attempts on the part of the church to render itself credible in the eyes of the world are radically undone by the central claim of our faith – that he died for our sins . . . was buried . . . and that on the third day, God raised him from the dead. Not metaphorically, not in some sense that ‘life’ as a principle cannot be overcome, but as a flesh and blood Fact. In many respects the Resurrection is the vindication of the doctrine of the Incarnation. It is utterly remarkable that often those who make most of Christ’s incarnation, are the very ones who for the sake of relevance or because ‘we know so much more about the world now’, must deny the Resurrection.
Paul reminds us that if the Resurrection of Jesus is not historic fact in the plainest sense of that phrase then we may as well give up on the whole idea of church and faith – being ‘of all people most to be pitied’.
But in fact Christ Has been raised from the dead. The outworking of this we think little about – the idea that the Resurrection of Jesus is meant to transform our lives in the here and now – we still relegate it as a doctrine to the ‘for use after I die’ pile. Rather Paul would have us die every day, put our lives on the line. That is to live lives that only make sense in the light of the Resurrection – lives which have no security in the things of the world, for they have a far more sure and certain security – the Risen Christ.