Hope Resurrected

            As we celebrate Resurrection Sunday let’s us turn to the scriptures in hope. In doing so I first want to reflect on the crucifixion. Obviously, there would have been no resurrection without Jesus sacrificial death. His body died that day on the cross. He was the sacrificial lamb on our behalf (1 Peter 1:17-21, Revelation 13:8). However, a number of other things died as well. The hopes and dreams of His followers died. Whether that was ruling and reigning with Jesus over Rome, or as in the case of Mary, simply being with Him, those hopes perished. We will come back to this.

Now, while we generally turn to the gospels for the resurrection, I am looking at Romans. It is in the letters of the New Testament that we see the impact of the resurrection. Paul made some interesting statements that highlight this fact.

22 And therefore “it was accounted to him for righteousness.” 23 Now it was not written for his sake alone that it was imputed to him, 24 but also for us. It shall be imputed to us who believe in Him who raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead, 25 who was delivered up because of our offenses, and was raised because of our justification. Romans 4:22–25 (NKJV)

Here is the Greek word that we translate as justification – δικαίωσις dikaiōsis; the act of pronouncing righteous, acquittal: – justification (2).[1]

The context here is Paul explaining how Abraham was treated as righteous by Yahweh due to his faith. Righteousness was accounted, or put to his account. Paul then says righteousness is charged to our account as well when we embrace Jesus’ sacrifice on our behalf. He then makes an interesting statement. Jesus was ‘delivered up because of our offenses.’ Here he is referring to the crucifixion. Jesus’ sacrifice was to pay the penalty for our sins. The next statement is even more interesting. Paul says Jesus was ‘raised because of our justification.’ Justification is a legal term and linked to righteousness. We are declared righteous because the Father is legally justified in doing so due to Jesus’ sacrifice. The efficacy of Jesus sacrifice was validated by the resurrection.

           This is why earlier in Romans Paul presented the gospel as a revelation of the righteousness of God.

16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. 17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “The just shall live by faith.” Romans 1:16–17 (NKJV)

Here is the Greek word that we translate as righteousness – δικαιοσύνη dikaiosunē; from 1342; righteousness, justice: – right (1), righteousness (90).[2]

The gospel, the good news is that God is in fact just and right in extending salvation to us because of what Jesus accomplished.

            Now we come back to other things that have died. In Romans 4 Paul uses Abraham’s faith to point to the crucifixion and resurrection so we need to look at what Abraham believed and then experienced. The context was Abraham and Sarah not having a child. Paul tells us that at this point in their lives the ability to conceive a child had died in both of them. Yet, by faith it was restored, resurrected if you will! As we reflect on that and the impact of Jesus resurrection, I think we need to go beyond the legal aspects of righteousness and justification. I believe we need to be like Abraham and look full in the face of hopes and dreams that have died and then look to the lamb to believe for their resurrection! Paul encourages us to do with these words.

32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? Romans 8:32 (NKJV)

Let’s look to the Lamb.

Look to the Lamb song

Jesus Culture, Lindy Cofer, Bryan & Katie Torwalt – Look To The Lamb (Official Visualizer) – Bing video

[1] Robert L. Thomas, New American Standard Hebrew-Aramaic and Greek Dictionaries : Updated Edition (Anaheim: Foundation Publications, Inc., 1998).

[2] Robert L. Thomas, New American Standard Hebrew-Aramaic and Greek Dictionaries : Updated Edition (Anaheim: Foundation Publications, Inc., 1998).

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I have been walking with Jesus since 1985. I am currently retired from my career in the helping professions but still focused on ministering to others. I completed a Doctorate of Philosophy in Apologetics in September 2020.

2 thoughts on “Hope Resurrected”

  1. Thankyou, Looking to the Lamb is indeed the answer! In the past couple of weeks, I looked up your teaching from 1997 1John Commentary. If we fall we are to get up and look to Him, not our sin, because Jesus has paid the price for the sins of the entire world. I had seen your latest post, quickly skimmed over it. I knew there was a “song” but did not know which one. I chose to seek God this morning after my walk and Look to the Lamb came to me, I played it over and over again, revelation of what Jesus did for me, beautiful time of worship. He is worthy! I also knew to read over Hope Resurrected & will meditate on the scriptures. The “song” Look To The Lamb!
    I appreciate your teachings, I am fed. Thankyou.

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