March 27, 2016


Acts 2:22-24

God raised [Jesus] from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him.

—  Acts 2:24

Nothing seems more impossible than a person rising from the dead. Humanly speaking, resurrections don’t happen. Have you ever seen one? I certainly haven’t!

But a resurrection happened on the Sunday after Jesus’ death. The followers of Jesus who went to the tomb to check it out did not find a body (John 20:1-10). And later that day Jesus’ disciples were stunned when he appeared to them. They wondered, Could Jesus ­really be alive?

The forty days between Easter and Jesus’ ascension proved that the resurrection was real. And on Pentecost, Peter preached not only that Jesus was alive but also that it was impossible for death to keep its grip on him. Death couldn’t win. Remaining dead was impossible for Jesus because he had fully paid the price of sin, which is death (Romans 6:23). When Jesus died on the cross, it was as if God the Father stamped a sign over the grave that said, “Paid in full.” Death had no power to keep Jesus in the tomb.

The joyous news of Easter is that death cannot keep its hold on believers either. Our bodies will rise again. The grave is not our final resting place.

So let’s rejoice today! Sing with joy: “Death cannot keeps its prey—Jesus, my Savior; he tore the bars away—Jesus, my Lord”!

Risen Lord, thank you for paying for our sin and rising from the dead. Give us hope in your power to raise us too! Amen.

About the author — Tom Groelsema

Tom Groelsema and his wife, Sheri, have served churches in Minnesota, Michigan, and North Carolina. They have four children and three granddaughters.

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