By Dan Coflin, River of Life Church
History is replete with political, military and religious leaders who have made claims to a position of deity and have, at times, successfully convinced those they led to believe their claims. What makes someone believe that another person is either God or His representative?
The answer to that question varies. Great accomplishments, supernatural feats, superior ideas are presented as proof that God has arrived. But how can we know what is true?
When the apostle Paul was writing the letter to the Romans, he began with a very important statement, “and [as to His divine nature] according to the Spirit of holiness was openly designated to be the Son of God with power [in a triumphant and miraculous way] by His resurrection from the dead: Jesus Christ our Lord.” (Romans 1:4 AMP)
Paul is saying that the proof that Jesus is the Son of God and the Lord of all is the resurrection from the dead.
Jesus often expressed to his disciples and to the multitudes that he would die, but after three days he would rise again. The greatest miracle ever recorded was when Jesus rose from the dead. This was not just a resuscitation of life, for Jesus had raised people from the dead as did some of the prophets of old, but Jesus was resurrected from the dead. What is the difference? If someone is raised from the dead, they will die again. Their body is mortal and therefore they will, one day, die. But resurrection is not raising up what is mortal and temporary but eternal. Jesus was raised to die no more. Jesus said that no one could take his life from him, that only he had power to lay it down and power to take it up again (John 10:18). His resurrection from the dead showed all humanity his prediction was true and his victory over death had been accomplished.
Jesus is the Lord of all creation. The Bible tells us that everything was created by him, “For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him.” (Col. 1:16)
But why would the Creator of all things choose to die? Death was the outcome of man’s sin and Jesus was a sinless man, therefore death had no right to him or power over him. But man had a terminal disease for which he had no cure. He could only receive the righteous judgment for his sin and that was the same for everyone – death would be the ultimate end of man. Man’s destiny was sealed and his ability to change it was lost.
That is why the Lord of All and the Creator of all things intervened. Death could not be denied because death was God’s predetermined judgment for sin, and all mankind had sinned. But if God became man and lived without sin, then death could not touch a sinless man. But a sinless man could choose to die and receive the judgment of the sinful and fulfill the righteousness of God. His death would pay the price for sin and all of mankind could receive forgiveness and cleansing from sin by coming to the only one who has the authority to forgive sin and to give eternal life. Jesus defeated death, and as victor he can give eternal life to all who believe. As we celebrate the empty tomb, we are celebrating Christ’s victory over death and proof that He is Lord of All, the Son of God, and the only Savior of man.
Dr. Dan Coflin and his wife Dianne co-pastor River of Life Church at 410 E. Chapman Rd. in Lutz, FL. 33549, (813) 949-9931, www.roltampa.org.
We would love to invite you to visit River of Life Church. Our lively worship begins at 10:30am on Sunday. We are a non-denominational, spirit-filled ministry. Please honor us with your visit. We would love to have you!