On the Third Day He Rose Again from the Dead

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Sunday, September 2, 2018 0 comments

by Logan Ames

Just two months ago, the world watched, first in horror then in global jubilation, as an entire soccer team was trapped several miles inside a cave in Thailand for 18 days before a daring rescue effort worked to near-perfection and got every single one of them out safely. Sadly, a retired Thai Navy SEAL who was volunteering died several days before the escape as he passed out underwater due to lack of oxygen while he was placing extra air tanks along the route which was being organized to bring the boys out of the cave. Outside of his death, however, the plan that was put together by volunteers, divers, and military personnel from all over the world worked just about as smoothly as possible.

According to this article, a major general in the Third Army region said, “The most important piece of the rescue was good luck." He then added, “I still can’t believe it worked." Now, I’m not sure what the man believes about God, but Christians around the world who were praying for a safe rescue and who have seen the power of God at work in their own lives would say that “luck” didn’t have anything to do with it. What do we really mean when we talk about “good luck” or “bad luck”? Who decides who gets which? Is it some random force in the universe that makes this critical decision for so many? Even Christians say it sometimes. I said it myself at least three times on the golf course yesterday when I made putts I wouldn’t ordinarily make!

I think that maybe it makes us feel more independent of God to talk about some other randomness that doesn’t actually exist. If we truly praise God for the good things that happen and the work he does in our lives, that means we also have to go to him when we do NOT get the result we wanted. And that can be a heck of a lot harder to deal with, especially when the lives of our loved ones are on the line. It’s simpler to just say we had “bad luck” so we don’t have to address God regarding what went wrong. The reality is that God is always in the details and the results, whether good or bad. God is worthy to be praised for giving those teams and divers what they needed to succeed on the rescue mission and for allowing them to be successful. But God doesn’t always work mysteriously. Sometimes, it’s as simple as staying connected to your source of life.

In the case of the Thailand rescue operation, their source of life was a rope that they sometimes couldn’t even see and had to locate by feel. The rope led them through the entire winding, hilly, underwater path to freedom. As we look at our own source of life that God has given us, it all goes back to an event that happened roughly 2,000 years ago that changed the world for every single person ever. After Jesus had been tortured, crucified, CONFIRMED dead, and buried in a tomb with a large security contingent guarding it, he rose from the grave on the third day after he was killed. This wasn’t luck. As Andy Stanley told us at a conference earlier this year, “Anyone who can successfully predict their own death and resurrection and then pull it off is someone we ought to be willing to listen to." Jesus had already covered our sins by being the atoning sacrifice to God on the cross. But it did not end there and only in his victory over the grave can we truly find victory in our own lives.

Because Jesus has already demonstrated that God has the power to raise the dead, you and I can choose to tap into that “resurrection power as our lifesource." No matter what trials we’re going through, they are not more powerful than resurrection power. I remember watching a talk show one time that had Terry and Rebecca Crews on it. Terry is a well-known actor and his wife of 28 years is a successful singer. During their conversation, they revealed that Terry had a past addiction to pornography and had gone so far as to be unfaithful to his wife many times. Rebecca talked about how she was so close to leaving and the talk show host asked why she stayed. She talked about the power of God and added, “There was a death, but from death there can be a resurrection." God resurrected what was a dead marriage.

What is it for you? Do you have faith and hope in the resurrection power of God? Take a look at Hebrews 11:17-19, which references a story originally found in Genesis 22. The writer of Hebrews talks about Abraham’s faith when God tested him and had him climb a mountain to sacrifice his son, Isaac, who had been the heir of the promise of many descendants for Abraham. These verses help us see the spiritual dilemma that Abraham faced. He was about to sacrifice the ONLY son of the promise because God said so. But, wait a minute? God had ALSO said that Isaac was the one through whom the offspring would come. How can this be? Abraham had to be thinking either he or God had gotten something wrong at some point. How could he go through with destroying the only son God gave him to meet the promise? Hebrews 11:19 gives us the answer: “Abraham reasoned that God could even raise the dead, and so in a manner of speaking he did receive Isaac back from death." That is some kind of faith, hope, and reasoning! No one had ever been risen from the dead before, but Abraham reasoned that it could happen because God would not tell him to do something seemingly so against his own Word without a plan. You and I have more reason to believe in the resurrection power of God because we live on the other side of Jesus and KNOW that it happened.

Do you believe it can happen in your life? What needs resurrected? A marriage? A desire for God? A body wrecked by drugs and alcohol? If you believe in Jesus and his power, even if you’re not quite believing it for your own personal situation yet, be like the father of a demon-possessed boy in Mark 9:21-24 who cried out, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!” You see, it’s only by faith that he could say that. It takes a little faith to realize you need a lot more of it. If you have no faith whatsoever, you don’t even realize you need more! The man was desperate for his boy to be healed and was somewhat resigned to not seeing it happen. He told Jesus to take pity on them IF he could do anything to help them. Jesus was somewhat surprised by the “if” qualifier and tells them anything is possible for those who believe. After the man admitted his unbelief and need for more faith, his boy was healed. Maybe you need to cry out to Jesus today to help your unbelief.

I’ve been saying that YOU have resurrection power if you believe in Jesus. If you’re wondering how that could be possible when you weren’t the One raised from the dead, take a look at Ephesians 1:18-20. Paul calls the power that comes to believers “incomparably great." He then specifies that it is the SAME POWER that God used when he raised Christ from the dead and took him back to heaven. How amazing is that! You can sit there right now in whatever mess you feel is happening in your life, and if you’ve trusted Jesus as your Lord and Savior, you can KNOW beyond all doubt that resurrection power is available to you. It’s not even “maybe." It’s there!

Are you ready to speak it into the dead areas of your life? Nothing in this world has power of you. Porn doesn’t. Drugs don’t. Alcohol doesn’t. Infidelity doesn’t. Your past doesn’t. Abuse doesn’t. Fear doesn’t. Your feelings don’t. Money doesn’t. Your sin doesn’t! This is the greatest thing about being a follower of Jesus. God used mighty strength to raise Christ from the dead and 2,000 years later, that power is available to you. You have resurrection power and no longer have reason to live in darkness and death. Believe it, claim it, and walk in it today!

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