What the Resurrection Means
"What I am saying, dear brothers and sisters, is that flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God. These perishable bodies of ours are not able to live forever. But let me tell you a wonderful secret God has revealed to us. Not all of us will die, but we will all be transformed." (NLT)— 1 Corinthians 15:50-51 This life is a short journey, preparing the way for something greater. If we could get that idea into our hearts and minds our perspectives will dramatically change.
When Paul got it, a great mystery had been solved. The meaning of the Resurrection hit him. Flesh and blood cannot inherit a spiritual kingdom. We can't move into a perfect realm in our current state of being. Our perishable, corruptible bodies have to move into an imperishable, incorruptible state. Our mortal lives have to be transformed into immortality.
That's when Paul said (and you can almost hear the excitement in his voice), "Death shall be swallowed up in victory!"
He went on to cry exultantly, "Death, where is your sting? Where is your victory?"
The purpose for Jesus' death was clear now! Paul understood. He couldn't wait to tell others.
It really is good news!
For me, after the loss of people I love, this was a wonderful revelation. When I, like Paul, finally grasped the power of the Resurrection, life took on new meaning.
In the closing paragraphs of the Chronicles of Narnia, C.S. Lewis wrote about the death of some of his characters: "For them it was only the beginning of the real story. All their life in this world...had only been the cover and title page; now at last they were beginning Chapter One of the Great Story, which no one on earth has read; which goes on forever; in which every chapter is better than the one before."1
Jesus taught us, "I am the way, the truth and the light." He also said, "I am the light of the world."
He is the way to heaven. He is the truth that exposed death as a powerless, defeated enemy. He is the light that can push away the clouds. In Him we can be free of fear. In Him we can find the peace that passes understanding. That's what the Resurrection means.
In Him we can truly live.
- C.S. Lewis, The Last Battle, (The Macmillan Co., 1956).