Dead, Buried and Alive

DAVE-TOMBTwo thousand years ago, just outside of Jerusalem, there was a brutal execution, a hasty burial, and–three days later–an inexplicably empty tomb.

For a time, none of those who witnessed these things understood the implications.

All these years after the resurrection, I still struggle to grasp the implications.

Jesus was killed on a Roman cross, was buried in a new tomb, and was raised from the dead on the 3rd day. And these astounding events of His passion week came with staggering promises. Jesus died for us so that we might live through Him.

This is the good news. We died with Him. We were buried with Him.  And we were raised with Him. More than that, we ascended with Him to heaven’s throne and are now seated with Him. Because He lives, we live.

That’s the  truth. That’s the glorious gospel truth that is relentlessly opposed by the father of lies.

The enemy hates our new life–our resurrection life–and he does everything he can to blind us to it and distract us from it. He wants us to wear the grave clothes of unbelief and to walk in shadowy doubt among the tombs. He wants us to confine ourselves within the cemetery gates, wandering like zombies in the darkness, or lying motionless in our graves as if we were stone-cold dead.

But once, while I was wandering the graveyard in a doubting stupor, I suddenly came to myself.  I happened upon the grave marked with my name, and I took a look inside my own tomb. I was surprised to find I was not there!

And then I remembered Christ’s word to me. “Because I live, you also shall live.” 

If we listen to His word of promise, the cemetery gates will creak open wide, and we will walk out of the darkness into the light of our new life–our hell-shaking, world-overcoming, joy-producing, kingdom-expanding, new life in Christ.

To help each other embrace the implications of Jesus’ resurrection, perhaps we should put a new twist on an old confession.

He is risen. 

And we are risen indeed.

How does the enemy try to convince you to live as one of the walking dead?



6 thoughts on “Dead, Buried and Alive

  1. Wonderful post, Dave, but if I may, a gentle correction…

    The term ‘walking dead’ should actually be treated as an honorific, because it is the nickname earned by the 1/9 Marines – First Battalion, Ninth Marine Regiment.. In Viet Nam the 1/9 endured the highest casualty rate in Marine history – and they were kept in the line.

    Recently, the enemy had been working on me through – of all things – Christian media. So much of what’s presented in books and on Christian TV speaks to a concept of “Santa God” who rewards the faithful – and particularly the financially faithful – with temporal success and happiness.

    And the opposite – I recently heard a prominent TV clergyman say that “God has a score to settle with Germany and Russia” because of the Holocaust and the pogroms, respectively. Not too many formerly active Nazis are left alive today, and certainly to one who participated in the Czarist pogroms.

    What the enemy said to me was that these idiots are representative of Christianity and of God. Not remotely true, of course, but my brain processed it as if it was.

    Getting back to the actual meaning was hard. I had to return to C.S. Lewis’ “Mere Christianity” to get my bearings. (The Scriptures didn’t help for this; they were too close to the words that had been twisted by the devil. I needed a trusted and wise guide.)

    God bless, Dave, and a Happy Easter to you. He is risen – ooh-rah!

    • Thank you for your thoughts, Andrew.
      Yes, the Walking Dead–a label of contempt worn as a badge of honor by those who fought with bravery and courage in a spirit of self-sacrifice.
      You make a keen observation when you point out how the enemy muddies the clear water of the gospel with so many false representations. It is heart sickening and I am thankful for your reminder to be alert to the temptation to reject the truth in the process of dismissing the many false characterizations.
      CS Lewis has an uncanny way of getting to the heart of the gospel and expressing the spirit of the truth.
      Happy Easter to you, Andrew. He is risen!

  2. He is risen … and we are risen indeed!
    I am so encouraged by your posts, Dave. You weave truth and hope through them and your artwork truly is worth a thousand words.
    Thanks for inspiring my faith.

  3. Loved this, Dave. You have such a way of making God’s truths personal. The way the enemy gets to me is through my thoughts, especially those saying, “You are not enough. You are less worthy.” I have to remember that God is the one who thinks me worthy and that is enough. Loved this post.

    • Thank you so much for your encouraging feedback, Jeanne.
      And thank you for sharing from your own experience how the enemy seeks to lure us into the shadows of doubt by whispering lies about our insufficiency, inadequacy or unworthiness to walk in new resurrection life. Your testimony shines a spotlight of truth on the enemy’s covert activity and helps us all stay alert to his schemes.

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