Rev. Dan Puckett: ‘Death is swallowed up in victory!’Published 11:06pm Wednesday, April 4, 2012
Early in the morning the day after Jesus Christ was crucified, some women made their way to the tomb to complete the preparations for burial of the body of Jesus, which had been hastily laid in a tomb on the eve of a religious holiday. The total focus of these women was death (Mark 16:1-3).
Their leader and teacher was dead, and they were intent on doing the proper thing. Their major concern was getting into the tomb, which had been sealed, with a large stone.
When they arrived at the tomb, the stone had been moved. They walked right into the tomb (Mark 16:5) to complete their work. There was a young man in a white robe sitting in the tomb expecting their arrival (Mark 16:5). The young man said to the women, “You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified.” Without waiting for a response, the young man declared, “He is risen! He is not here.”
That young man in the tomb, obviously an angel, made the declaration that has moved the world from darkness to light: Jesus Christ has risen from the dead!
Death rules the minds of people. Death is the stalker. Every living person knows somebody who has died. Funeral parlors populate the main thoroughfares. Cemeteries are placed in the middle of towns or on a main road leading into town. Hardly a day goes by that we do not see a hearse going to or from a final resting place. We think more about dying than living.
The Apostle Paul, in 1 Corinthians 15:54, quoted the Old Testament prophet Isaiah from Isaiah 25:8, where the prophet was speaking of the Messiah: “He will swallow up death forever.”
Jesus Christ died on the cross for the sins of all mankind, was buried in a tomb, and was raised from the dead by the power of God almighty. This mighty resurrection paves the way for every person who puts their faith in the finished work of Christ to go through death like it is nothing more than a thin veil and enter into eternal life with God in heaven.
Do people still die? Obviously, yes! Do we understand death? Not really. But there is a new perspective.
Paul said, in 1 Corinthians 15:55, “O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?” When Jesus Christ the Son of God came out of the tomb victorious over death, He said, “I am He who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore. Amen. And I have the keys of Hades and of Death” (Revelation 1:18).
If Jesus has the keys now, who had them before? According to Hebrews 2:14, Satan had the “power of death.” The death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ gave Him (Jesus) the power and authority over death and the grave.
The statement in Hebrews 2, continues: “release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.”
Believers in Christ are free from the fear of death! The victory of Jesus Christ over death and the grave is the victory of every person who names the name of Jesus Christ as Lord and savior.
On that Easter morning hundreds of years ago, “Death was swallowed up in victory!” Is it your victory?
Tags: Rev. Dan Puckett