Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection, knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; for he who has died is freed from sin. Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, is never to die again; death no longer is master over Him. For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God. Even so consider yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus. Romans 6:3-11
Today's thoughts from today's verses:
While the story of the Life of the Christ culminates in his resurrection, the resurrection is just the beginning for us as his followers. The Devotionals for this week are a follow up to our 90 Day Life of Christ series. We will look at five New Testament passages that will help us understand, embrace, experience “resurrection living” to the fullest.
Some of the disciples of Jesus had the opportunity to believe in His resurrection through pure faith alone when His resurrection was reported to them by others who had already seen Him alive. But they needed more than just a report; they needed to see Him alive for themselves as well. Jesus said that those who believe without seeing are the ones who are blessed. In one sense believing without seeing is the only opportunity we have today for believing because after completing His post-resurrection ministry here on the earth, Jesus ascended into Heaven and the opportunity ended for seeing Him and then believing. How does one believe in the resurrection of Jesus Christ without seeing him alive like the early disciples did? Many have come to believe in the resurrection down through the centuries, but most do so having overcome doubts and uncertainties. For the ones who struggle to believe that Jesus rose from the dead and is alive for evermore and can’t seem to overcome their doubts and believe without seeing, there is a simple way to become sure forever. Prayerfully say, “Lord Jesus, if you are there, reveal Yourself to me as my risen Savior and Lord! He will show Himself to you and you will see Him, not like the disciples of old when they saw Him with their physical eyes, but with spiritual eyes and then you will be able to believe.
Embracing the resurrection of Jesus Christ brings us to the place where we must embrace our own resurrection. The benefit of Christ’s sacrificial death for us and subsequent resurrection is that we become ones who potentially experience “resurrection” in three different ways. Before we put our faith in Christ we are spiritually dead. When we put our faith in Christ and receive the forgiveness of sins, we become spiritually alive to God which could be called our spiritual resurrection. Someday, we will experience physical resurrection in the end times. There is a third way that we experience resurrection that is supposed to follow our spiritual resurrection. Romans 6 says that we are to be raised to newness in life in Christ. We are made spiritually alive to God (First way we are resurrected) so that Christ can live in us by His Spirit to enable us to live a new life (Second way we are resurrected). This is all in preparation for the ultimate consummation of all things which will include are being given glorified bodies (Third way we are resurrected). Thus we will spend all eternity with the Lord as restored beings set to fulfill God’s purposes unhindered forever. This great work of God is the magnificent expression of Grace that He has made available to all who will call upon Him in faith. It is undeserved and unearned and is intended for all. Since it is undeserved and unearned there is no one who is out of reach of this gracious work of God.
Jesus says to all of us, “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy laden and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” He is alive and can be alive in our souls to live the life for us that needs to be lived. Any other way of living out our Christianity is heavy, burdensome, and wearying. May God have mercy on us and lead us in the everlasting way of “resurrection living.”
Today's prayer response from today's thoughts:
Lord, thank you for your magnificent grace and the remarkable “resurrection” work you are accomplishing in my life. I know you are alive and well in my soul and I want to be as alive to your presence as possible. Grant that the life I live will be true “resurrection” living. I count on you to live the life that needs to be lived in and through me. In this way I choose to live fully for you and walk in newness of life. Amen!
Posted on Mon, April 2, 2018
by Ken Hart