Raised from the Dead
52 and the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; 53 and coming out of the graves after His resurrection, they went into the holy city and appeared to many.
Verses 52 and 53 are some of the most controversial and questioned parts of the crucifixion story. The questions are obvious. Who exactly resurrected? What it some of the famous men of the past- David, Abraham, Daniel or Esther? Or what is people who had recently died who the people of Israel would recognize? What happened to them when they walked into the city? Did they just go on living their normal lives or were they also taken to heaven as Jesus was?
One would assume that it was no one exceptionally famous as they would have been mentioned by name. So the common thought is that they recently deceased people, which many would recognize and see as a true miracle.
In the end, the actual people are not as important as the event itself. What happened here was a glimpse as to why Jesus dying was necessary. We can have life again because of his sacrifice. He not only can forgive sins but give life to whom he chooses. Paul talks about the importance of this as well.
12 Now if Christ is preached that He has been raised from the dead, how do some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? 13 But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ is not risen. 14 And if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty.
1 Corinthians 15:12-14
We must all understand and believe in the reality of the resurrection. If you don’t truly believe in that, you don’t truly believe in God’s greatest gift for us. But Paul gives us the true answer just a few verses later.
20 But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the firstfruits of those who have [d]fallen asleep. 21 For since by man came death, by Man also came the resurrection of the dead. 22 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive. 23 But each one in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, afterward those who are Christ’s at His coming.
1 Corinthians 15:20-23
What Jesus is promising us is real. Make sure your faith in that is sure.
Pr. Steven Couto