As much as we celebrate the power of the cross, we mustn’t neglect the power of the resurrection. Many have died on a cross -though only one as the Son of God – but the spectacular coming-back-to-life is the experience of Jesus alone. God the Father confirmed the power and sufficiency of Christ’s death to forgive sin and His identity as God’s Son, the sinless One, by raising Jesus from the dead (Rom 1:1-4). The resurrection sealed the deal and confirmed our salvation won at the cross. “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy had caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead” (I Pet 1:3).
In Philippians chapter 3, the apostle Paul writes, “Not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith, that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death; in order that I may attain to the resurrection from the dead” (Phil 3:9-11).
In one verse, Paul takes the power of the cross; “the fellowship of His sufferings” and “being conformed to His death” and puts it together with the power of the resurrection in his desire to know Christ in His fullness. Paul follows a similar pattern in Romans 6:5, “For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection.” This hearkens back to the previous verse in chapter 6, “As Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life” (Rom 6:4).
To walk in newness of life. Somehow we have landed on my favorite word in the New Testament; the word new. Nothing goes together better than the words “new” and “resurrection”. We were raised with Christ to experience all the “new” that He has promised His children. So as we approach this Resurrection Sunday, take a minute to thank the resurrecting Father for both the privilege and responsibility, and might I add the godly desire, to walk in the power of the resurrection.