As they spoke to the people, the priests, the captain of the temple, and the Sadducees came upon them, being greatly troubled because they taught the people and preached through Jesus the resurrection from the dead. And they seized them and put them in custody until the next day, for it was already evening. But many of those who heard the word believed, and the number of the men grew to about five thousand.Acts 4:1–4 — Modern English Version (Thinline Edition.; Lake Mary, FL: Passio, 2014)
Preached the resurrection?
This turn of phrase in Acts is enlightening. I mean, how different is that from today’s preaching?
Imagine what would ‘preaching through Jesus the resurrection from the dead’ looks like. Instead, we get preaching of other things. I am not disparaging that. What I am saying is we focus much more on the death of Jesus. That’s not a bad thing as it brought a respite whereby we can read these words.
Yet, it is the resurrection from the dead that is everything. Without it, there is no real hope. It’s because He lives, I can have a reason to live… A reason to love others. In fact, that is the only real way to love others. Without Him, it is a far more difficult thing to do.
We focus muchly on death, the wages of sin, and its power over us. Perhaps that is to reach the unsaved person who attends church. His death gives us freedom from the just recompense due to sin. Ought we not use that freedom to seek remission of sins and put our hope in the only One Who has demonstrated power over death?
It could be the vestiges of papism. From the moment one enters certain churches, it is apparent that death is present. Jesus is often portrayed as dead and still suspended on a cross. When a mass is offered, it’s a celebration of death. Jesus is re-crucified (dying again) at the ringing of a bell. And that was done on command of the priest.
Friend… Jesus died once. His death is for all. It says the just recompense of your sin. He isn’t angry at you. The time now is to change your mind. Seek the Savior who died your death. He has a gift of life for you.