Thursday, November 19, 2015

Jesus Predicted His Own Resurrection (What the Great Good News for Sinners!)

Jesus talked about his death and resurrection. 
’The Son of Man must suffer many terrible things,’ Jesus said. ‘He will be rejected by the elders, the leading priests, and the teachers of religious law. He will be killed, but on the third day he will be raised from the dead’” (Luke 9:22, NLT).

Jesus told his disciples “not to tell anyone” that he was the Messiah (Luke 9:21), not because it is wrong, but because it was a premature declaration or that Jesus was not fully revealed himself to them his messiahship due to the absent of resurrection and ascension, and all of them were clearly hadn’t understood Peter’s confession of faith that Jesus is “the Messiah” (9:20). The Father “revealed” to Peter but not due to his understanding which was a different kind of messiah than what Jesus have in mind but because of God’s Holy Spirit who love to revealed the truth about the Son of God. So Jesus began to spell it out for them (Well, after Jesus’ resurrection, he said to them, “Go tell!”).

Jesus started by saying he would have to suffer greatly at the hands of “the elders, the leading priests, and the teachers of religious law” – in effect, the Jewish supreme court – and that would lead to his death (As a note: Jesus is the only Person who choose to come to the world, choose his parents, choose to live among us, choose who’s going to persecute him, choose how to die and time to raised back to life again. We, including the enemies, absolutely have no choice in any of these!). Those plain statements much have shocked the disciples, especially the part about his dying. And evidently they couldn’t comprehend the next part, the Good News, that “on the third day” he would “be raised from the dead.”

I think, if they had actually heard what Jesus (really) said about coming back to life, they probably would have pressed him on that issue, saying something like, “Wait a minute! How is that possible?” Instead, the Gospel stories report that Peter “began to reprimand him for saying such things” (see Mark 8:32). I tell you, Peter thought of a different version of messiah; not the Scripture’s Messiah. Jesus predicted his resurrection at least two more times beside in the Bible passages above in Matthew 17:23 and 20:19, yet the disciples were shocked when it actually occurred.

Think about this: We live on the other side of these predicted events and know the story of Jesus’ being rejected, accused, and convicted by the religious authorities and tortured and crucified by the Romans. Thanks God for the written Word, the Bible. We also know the truth of the Resurrection – that on “the third day” Jesus was “raised from the dead.” Centuries after those facts, people still have misconceptions about Jesus’ real identity and they are still surprised that Jesus arose from the dead. All religious and great men’s tombs are occupied, but Jesus’ tomb is empty! The Good News is that instead of struggling under the weight of sin, guilt, and worldly issues and conflicts, we can live in the joy of Resurrection. Because Jesus rose, we know he is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. And because he lives, we too shall live. Amen!


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