A Christian is someone who believes in the physical resurrection of Jesus Christ, and lives in light of the implications of that event.” Raised With Christ, Page 20
I wrote this broad definition of a Christian back in 2009. It is inspired by a phrase in one of the Apostle Paul’s letters:
“If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” (Romans 10:9)
The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the greatest event in human history. It is the moment when God’s power and love triumphed over sin and death, and it is the foundation of the Christian faith.
The resurrection is the ultimate proof of God’s power and love. It shows that God is willing to go to great lengths to save us, and that he has the power to do so.
The resurrection is the ultimate victory over sin and death. It is the assurance that death has been defeated and eternal life is ours.
The resurrection of Jesus Christ is not just a historical event, it’s a present-day reality that transforms our lives and gives us hope for the future.
The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the basis for our hope as Christians. It shows us that death is not the end, and that we have a future beyond this life.
“The resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead is the cornerstone of our faith. It is the foundation of everything we believe.” – Billy Graham, (https://billygraham.org/story/the-resurrection-of-jesus-christ/)
Saving faith is not a mere intellectual assent. It is a deep heartfelt orientation of the heart towards trust and devotion. It involves a radical change in our worldview and approach to Jesus.
We learn to live out the implications of the resurrection: one of which is that we were all born dead in sin and so we need the power of the resurrection to work a miracle in us today. Theologians call this regeneration and it means we are spiritually raised to life right now so that we can live in freedom today, and receive the hope of eternal life to come with Christ. It is this hope that makes us grieve in a different way to those who are not Christians.
The belief that Jesus was raised bodily gave birth to the Church in the first place. Throughout history, no major group has used the name “Christian” without believing this. It doesn’t matter whether you are talking to a Roman Catholic, a Presbyterian, a Pentecostal, a Baptist, or someone from the Eastern Orthodox community, the one defining belief we all share is that the body of Christ Jesus was raised physically from the dead to give us new life!
Christians believe that we are already raised with Christ spiritually and will be raised with him physically when we die. This belief really does change everything!
“The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the single most important event in human history, and it has the power to transform our lives today.” – Rick Warren, (https://pastorrick.com/devotional/english/the-resurrection-is-the-key-to-your-future/)
It is fifteen years since I wrote my first book Raised with Christ. I have been through some pretty traumatic years since then, including facing my own mortality though a cancer diagnosis. But my faith in the resurrection remains firm and it is this that has been my only real source of hope
“The resurrection of Jesus is the ultimate demonstration of God’s victory over sin, death, and evil. It is the basis for our hope and the source of our strength.” – Timothy Keller (https://redeemercitytocity.com/articles/the-resurrection-and-the-kingdom/)
No wonder our Anglican brethren say in their litergy:
Christ has died:
Christ is risen:
Christ will come again.
Dying you destroyed our death,
rising you restored our life:
Lord Jesus, come in glory
God of glory,
by the raising of your Son
you have broken the chains of death and hell:
fill your Church with faith and hope;
for a new day has dawned
and the way to life stands open
in our Saviour Jesus Christ.
There are a number of hymns that speak of the resurrection:
Low in the grave he lay,
Jesus my Savior,
waiting the coming day,
Jesus my Lord!
Up from the grave he arose,
with a mighty triumph o’er his foes;
he arose a victor from the dark domain,
and he lives forever,
with his saints to reign.”
– From the hymn “Up from the Grave He Arose” by Robert Lowry
Thine be the glory, risen, conquering Son;
endless is the victory thou o’er death hast won.” –
From the hymn “Thine Be the Glory” by Edmond L. Budry.
I thought I would give ChatGPT a chance to write us a new hymn based on the idea that we too have been raised with Christ. I am no poet but I think it didn’t do too badly
Raised with Christ, we seek the things above,
Where Christ is seated, at the right hand of God.
Set your minds on things above, not below, For our lives are hidden in Christ, whom we know.
Chorus: We are raised with Christ, we are made new,
In his resurrection, we find life anew.
Death has lost its sting, the grave its victory,
For we are raised with Christ, now and for eternity.
Put to death the earthly things within,
The desires of the flesh that war against him.
For we have died and our life is now in him,
In his resurrection, we find life again.
Clothe yourselves with compassion and love,
Forgiving one another, as Christ forgave us.
Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts,
And be thankful for the new life he imparts.
One day we’ll see him, face to face,
In all his glory and his grace.
For we are raised with Christ, and he will come again,
To raise us up with him, forever to reign.
I will leave you with this amazing Lou Fellingham song which could have been written as an anthem for my book. Have a listen to this wondeful song this Easter morning.
More on the resurrection from Adrian Warnock
A Christian is someone who has been transformed by the grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ. They have received forgiveness of sins and new life in Christ, and are now called to live for Him.” From What is a Christian:
Sermon on believing in the risen Jesus
Raised With Christ: How the Resurrection Changes Everything — USA or UK
Jesus truly is alive today. But compared to his atoning death, Jesus’ resurrection sparks relatively little discussion in the church. Inadvertently,we can become so focused on the good news that Christ died for our sins, that we almost forget he was “raised for our justification” (Romans 4:25).
In Raised with Christ, author Adrian Warnock exhorts Christians not to neglect the resurrection in their teaching and experience. Warnock takes his cue from Acts, where every recorded sermon focuses on Jesus’ resurrection. He stresses that Christians who faithfully proclaim both the death and the bodily resurrection of Jesus, and live out the implications of that message in vibrant,grace-filled churches, will be enabled to reach a world that lives in death’s dark shadow.
The power of the risen Christ is active in every true Christian, transforming our lives. Raised with Christ will help you discover afresh the massive implications of the empty tomb. Jesus’ resurrection really has changed everything.
Evidence for Jesus’ resurrection
Raised for our Justification (Romans 4:25)
A relationship with the risen Jesus