The Resurrection is the Why

The Resurrection is the Why                                                  March 31. 2024

“Why should I remain a Christian?  The church has so many hypocrites in it.  I have been mistreated by Christians who don’t seems to care about me as a person.  And some Christians have conflated American political party views with what the Bible teaches and it reflects poorly on all of us.  Christians are worldly anyway, so what’s the difference?  The church just doesn’t care for people and is more interested in rights than service.  Why shouldn’t I leave it?  Why shouldn’t I walk away from God?  Give me a good reason.”

These are objections and reasons we sometimes hear from those who are on the verge or who have already walked away from the Lord.  There are others, too, but these represent what I have seen and heard.  What do we say?  What is the answer?  Why should we stay and continue to serve the Lord?  The answer is…

The resurrection of Jesus.  This is the why.  This is the reason.  If it is true, then everything else that one thinks works as an objection could never justify walking away from God.  If the resurrection didn’t happen, then the way of Christ is false (I Corinthians 15:12-19).  If it did happen, then we are responsible for the implications that should be affecting our lives in vital ways.  Paul said it: “And He died for all so that those who live should no longer live for themselves, but for the One who died for them and was raised” (II Corinthians 5:15).

I do not doubt that there are hypocrites among God’s people, or that some churches have mistreated people, or that some have abused political platforms, or that some are worldly and more interested in personal rights.  I’ve seen and witnessed all of this, and we ought to show compassion on those who have suffered mistreatment.  But these do not mean that the resurrection is false.  These do not mean that walking away from the resurrected Lord is justified.  If the resurrection happened, then Christ is indeed Lord and we are accountable to Him.  Period.  No other reason could justify walking away from Him.  The resurrection is the hinge issue.

Perhaps adjustments need to be made regarding one’s associations (I Corinthians 15:33).  Perhaps by our own commitment we can show others by example how they ought to be living and acting.  Whatever we must do to serve the Lord, let us do it, for the resurrection is the driving truth as to why we need to remain faithful to Him.  He was raised and He is Lord.  How others treat me does not change that conclusion.  How hypocritical some may be does not show Jesus wasn’t raised.

“But you don’t understand what I’ve gone through.”  Maybe, maybe not.  None of us should be assuming what others have gone through.  That’s not the issue, however.  If Jesus was raised from the dead, then whatever else we may say, we must acknowledge Him as Lord and act accordingly.  “Whatever you do, do it from the heart, as something done for the Lord and not for people, knowing that you will receive the reward of an inheritance from the Lord.  You serve the Lord Christ” (Colossians 3:23-24).  Remember that Jesus was treated poorly.  If others treat us poorly or we have some bad experiences, then show people what living a resurrected life for the Lord looks like.  Perhaps they will repent and turn to Him.  Because:

The resurrection is the reason for the existence of the people of God (Acts 2).

The resurrections is the basis for any hope we may have (I Peter 1:3-5).

The resurrection is the grounding for our resurrection (Romans 6:3-6).

The resurrection means that we know our work in the Lord is not in vain (I Corinthians 15:58).

The resurrection is the proof that we will stand before God in judgment (Acts 17:30-31).

The resurrection is the reason we ought to be living as those who have been born again: buried with Him in baptism and raised to walk in newness of life, “For if we have been united with Him in the likeness of His death, we will certainly also be in the likeness of His resurrection” (Romans 6:4-5).  When people mistreat, abuse, or act hypocritically, that is not the fault of the risen Jesus.  Rather, it only shows that we have not allowed His resurrection to have the kind of impact in our lives that it ought to have.  Instead of walking away from the resurrected Lord, we need to be turning back to Him so that we are no longer living for ourselves but for Him who died and was raised.

No negative personal experiences change the truth of the resurrection.  Feelings do not change facts.  Christians acting poorly do not extinguish the truth of Jesus.  Again, whatever we must do to serve Jesus, do it, for it all hinges on His resurrection.  If it did not happen, then walk away.  If it did happen, we must cling even closer to Jesus as Lord so that we have life in His name (John 20:30-31).

I believe Jesus was raised.  That’s why I stay.                                             By Doy Moyer