“God was manifested in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen by angels, preached among the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up in glory.” (1 Timothy 3:16, NKJV)
As we approach the holiest day of the year, let us not forget the “Great Mystery” written about by the Apostle Paul in 1 Tim. 3:16:
- Jesus Christ, fully God, took on human flesh and dwelt among us
- He lived a sinless life, entirely fulfilling all the obligations of God’s law on behalf of those who would have faith in Him
- After giving His life as a sacrifice for those deserving death because of their sins, Jesus conquered death and was resurrected bodily
- He then appeared to hundreds of people before ascending into Heaven to sit at the right hand of God the Father, where He awaits the full realization of His Kingdom
- Many people, recognizing the impossibility of the resurrection apart from a divine miracle authenticating the identity of Christ as the Son of God, believed in Him as their Lord and Savior
For years I taught theology and apologetics at a Christian high school. Unbelieving students would sometimes tell me that Jesus was nothing more than a great moral teacher.
But here’s the thing: good moral teachers don’t rise from the dead after resting in the grave for three days. It is because of the resurrection that we know our faith is reasonable and set upon a firm foundation. As the Apostle Paul told the church at Corinth, “And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain” (1 Cor. 5:14).
We worship a risen savior. When a group of women went to the tomb of Jesus only to find his body missing, two angels calmed their fears and told them:
“‘He is not here, but is risen! Remember how He spoke to you when He was still in Galilee, saying, The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again.’ And [the women] remembered His words” (Luke 24:6-8, NKJV).
Let us celebrate this good news — the good news that invigorates our hope and verifies our faith.