Consequences of the Resurrection
We have thought of the Centrality and the Certainty of the resurrection. We now proceed to consider some of its Consequences. As with the implications of His death, this is an inexhaustible subject, as the whole of Christianity is consequent upon His resurrection. So we will confine ourselves to matters that are expressly linked to the resurrection in the Scriptures. This month we will look together at some blessed truths that the resurrection demonstrates, concerning divine Persons.
The Son Of God
The resurrection confirms Who the Lord Jesus Christ is. At the beginning of His public ministry, His baptism, there had been an open acknowledgment of His deity, in which Father, Son, and Spirit were all involved: “And the Holy Ghost descended in a bodily shape like a dove upon Him, and a voice came from heaven, which said, Thou art My beloved Son; in Thee I am well pleased” (Luke 3:22, KJV). At its close, in His death and resurrection, is the fulfilment of that which His baptism symbolized, and, again, there is an unequivocal demonstration of His Deity, in which each person of the Trinity is once more active: He was “declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead” (Rom 1:4, KJV). One blessed consequence of His resurrection is that He is marked out as the unique, eternal Son of God.
The Satisfaction of God
As well as being a demonstration of His Sonship, the resurrection establishes beyond all doubt that God is fully satisfied in His Son and in the work that He did upon the cross. Paul, in the synagogue in Antioch in Pisidia, speaks of the wickedness of the leaders in Jerusalem towards Him: “And though they found no cause of death in Him, yet desired they Pilate that He should be slain.” He goes on to speak of Him being taken down from the tree and laid in a sepulchre. He then adds, tersely and powerfully, “But God raised Him from the dead” (Acts 13:28-30, KJV). What a glorious contrast. How we delight in that word “But.” Men showed the depths of their disapproval of Him, and when they had done all they could, it was time for God to give His verdict, which He did in the clearest way possible: “God raised Him from the dead.” In the resurrection, God has vindicated Him and declared His complete pleasure in Him and in all that He did.
The Strength of God
The resurrection is also a display of divine power. Paul writes: “For though He was crucified through weakness, yet He liveth by the power of God” (2Cor 13:4, KJV) and of “the exceeding greatness of His power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of His mighty power, which He wrought in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead” (Eph 1:19-20, KJV). If anyone doubts the power of God, a consideration of Christ’s resurrection ought to banish such a thought once and for all. Men may boast of their strength and their achievements, but how feeble even the greatest of human attainments are, when compared with that of “God which raiseth the dead” (2Cor 1:9, KJV).
The Scriptures of God
Christ’s resurrection also confirms the accuracy and reliability of the Word of God, and specifically of the prophecies of the OT. Preaching at the day of Pentecost, Peter speaks of the resurrection: “Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that He should be holden of it.” In what sense was it “not possible” that He should remain dead? There are many reasons why it was impossible for Him to remain in the grave, and Peter gives one here: “For David speaketh concerning Him, I foresaw the Lord always before my face, for He is on my right hand, that I should not be moved … Thou wilt not leave My soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer Thine Holy One to see corruption” (Acts 2:24-25, 27, KJV). The Scriptures had said that He would rise again, and the resurrection has shown them to be right.
The Sphere of God
One of the great consequences of the resurrection is the blessed change that it has brought for our Lord Jesus Christ. “Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over Him. For in that He died, He died unto sin once: but in that He liveth, He liveth unto God” (Rom 6:9-10, KJV). We can scarcely begin to contemplate what it must have meant for Him to voluntarily enter that sphere where death has dominion. In doing so, He dealt fully and conclusively with sin. Thus He only died “once,” and, having been raised, He “dieth no more.” No longer is He in the realm where death has mastery, but in the sphere of resurrection life, which, bless God, will never end. What joy it must have brought to His heart to forever depart from the realm that is associated with sin and death into that of endless life, a life lived unto God.
The Sovereignty of God
In Revelation 1:18, the risen Lord reaffirms the fact that He has risen, never to die again. “I am He that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore” (KJV). However, He goes on to give a consequence of this. Not only has He been forever removed from the sphere of death, but He is the One who has control over it, and what follows after it: “… and have the keys of hell and of death.” Having the “keys” signifies His authority. Death and destiny are all under His sovereignty. This will be exercised fully in the future, for He is the One who will raise the dead. But that is a subject for a future article, in the will of the Lord.
Having looked at some consequences of the resurrection for divine Persons, we will go on next month, God Willing, to look at consequences for us.