The week of Easter is commonly referred to as the ‘passion week’. If this is so then it is appropriate to refer to the month of Easter as the passion month. This is the month of March, the month of Easter and therefore it is safe to refer to this month as the passion month. Though the Easter Sunday is on the first of April, still the majority of the fasting leading to the Easter takes place in the month of March. The Good Friday is also in the month of March. So welcome once again into the month of restoration, for in this month by the works of Christ on the cross the restoration of humanity back to his original position in God was accomplished. Earlier in Isaiah 42:22, the situation of humanity was described in gory details: ‘But this is a people robbed and spoiled; they are all of them snared in holes, and they are hid in prison houses: they are for a prey, and none delivereth; for a spoil, and none saith, Restore.’
We were a people robbed and spoiled and then Christ came in this passion month and restored us back to glory, we are now no longer a people robbed and spoiled but a people robed in the splendor and beauty of our God! This was what the resurrection of Christ brought us, total restoration back to our once held Edenic status in God! This is why the message of Easter, of the resurrection, became the predominant message of the Apostles!
There was only one thing the Apostles harped on in almost all of their messages: the resurrection of Christ. In one of those scriptures that buttress this in Acts 4:33 the Bible says, 'with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus and great grace was upon them all'. Other scriptures that testified of the Apostles passion about the resurrection abounds: Acts 2:32-33, Acts 4:2, Acts 4:33, Acts 17:18, 32
‘This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses. 33 Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear’(Acts 2:32-33)
‘1 And as they spake unto the people, the priests, and the captain of the temple, and the Sadducees, came upon them, 2 Being grieved that they taught the people, and preached through Jesus the resurrection from the dead’(Acts 4:2)
‘Then certain philosophers of the Epicureans, and of the Stoicks, encountered him. And some said, What will this babbler say? other some, He seemeth to be a setter forth of strange gods: because he preached unto them Jesus and the resurrection….And when they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some mocked: and others said, We will hear thee again of this matter’(Acts 17:18,32)
You can understand their craziness about the resurrection gospel. I have seen a couple of dead people raised back to life planting churches the length and breadth of the land. You could feel the excitement. Every Sunday after such events the church has always been filled up! The whole town during such period never gets anything to talk about that except this miraculous resuscitation of men, women, and children who for once everyone thought were dead. Every little group of men, women, and children chatting across different homes and corners in the town were always talking about the 'landlord's daughter that was raised back to life', it was a discourse that probably goes on for months and years! That's the power of having the dead raised back to life! Or if I told you that your dead grandma has been raised back to life and I had dinner with her last night will you keep just wave it off and ask 'what's the next interesting thing?’ No! Nothing can be more interesting than the resurrection from the dead!
This was all the Apostles can preach and really that was all there is to preach anyway because without the resurrection our faith is fake and in vain!
"But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen: And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain." 1 Corinthians 15:13-14
This is the cornerstone of our belief the bedrock on which that which we profess is built! The profession of our faith is based on the resurrection of the Lord! Without his resurrection, there is no profession!
What was it that turned the weak timid Peter to a bold fiery preacher overnight? The resurrection was it! He saw it, he lived it and so he could not keep quiet about it! No wonder the Apostles declared that 'which we have seen of the word of life and handle of the word of life, we cannot but declare!'
The early church was never quiet about the resurrection. Till date, it's still the most important event in human history defining the course of our lives forever. Why is the church silent about this important event? Because we are yet to have a revelation of what happened at the grave when he rose from the dead! Or is it probably because we want to sound nice to people of other religion?
The early church was not bothered about sounding nice, they were only bothered about sounding real. The resurrection was as real to them as the 9/11 bombing that shook the world a decade or so ago! It's hard to keep silent about what is real to you!
This is why Paul prayed that the early church will understand what it was that happened at the resurrection of the Lord.
‘That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: 18 The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, 19 And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power, 20 Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places, 21 Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come: 22 And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, 23 Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all’(Ephesians 1:17-23)
This is my prayer for you and for me that as we undertake this journey together we will have a revelation of his resurrection that will bring a revolution in our lives! It was all Paul wanted to know: 'that I may know him and the power of his resurrection'! May you experience that power in your life. Amen.