Christ is Risen Indeed

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Despite that some prominent leaders are telling us otherwise the world is becoming an increasingly ugly place. Human dignity is trampled upon. Popular media teaches our children violence, witchcraft and promiscuity under the pretence of innocent entertainment. We are expected to celebrate moral confusion. Human life is treated as a disposable commodity. Good and evil have traded places.

Lying leaders are shouting over one another. False prophets are prophesying one thing today and another tomorrow. Brazen criminals are killing in the name of their gods. Cruelty and lack of empathy are gaining the upper hand. Oppressors and liberators are looking more alike. There is a bitter taste of fear, anger and confusion in the air. Most feel helpless to do anything to help the world out of its predicament. It looks like Satan himself is having a ball, and many are dancing to his tune.

The mess will only get worse. Do not expect to see another Berlin Wall going down anytime soon. Do not look to governments, mighty corporations, and your favorite revolutionary movement, or to the power of your gun for your salvation. Aliens or some trans-human intelligence will not rescue you either. Too many are working diligently and overnight behind the scene, and some in plain view, to keep you disorientated. The words of Jesus ring true today: “People will faint from fear and expectation of the things that are coming on the world”. Luke 21:26.

But the designers of fifty shades of evil will not win. They tried over and over again, throughout the human history, hoping in vain that one day their towers of Babel will reach the stars of heaven. Many times it looked as if the demons of conquest, enslavement and deception were just about to assume the complete control, repeatedly misreading the silence of God.

Even Satan, the father of all deceit, thought presumptuously that he was too smart for God. He thought that Jesus was too week to resist the charm of his temptations. He expected also, that the cross of Jesus would work to Jesus’ demise. Satan hoped he could outmaneuver Jesus, get Him of His throne, and place himself there as the King of the Universe. And he still foolishly believes that Jesus is too week for him.

Let us never underestimate the weakness of Jesus, for out of His weakness the true strength was born. On the Good Friday, when the crowd of mockers shouted “Crucify Him!” Satan cheered believing that he killed everything that embedded goodness, justice and love. He foolishly thought the world was finally his.

But on the Resurrection morning, when Jesus Christ victoriously claimed His life again, Satan’s tower of Babel crumbled to pieces. The prince of death was mortally defeated. In the metaphoric words of C.S. Lewis the resurrection of Christ meant, “that though the Witch (Satan) knew the Deep Magic, there is a magic deeper still she did not know; that when a willing victim (Jesus) who had committed no treachery was killed in a traitor’s stead, the Table would crack down and Death itself would start working backwards.” C.S. Lewis; The Chronicles of Narnia – The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe.

Thanks to the resurrection of Jesus his and our enemy Satan, the Witch in the C.S. Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia, stands today as a defeated foe, about to fall beyond recovery. Because his power is limited, and his time is running out, he wonders around like a wounded beast. Whatever time he still has at his disposal (not much is left) he has decided to use to frustrate God’s creation as much as he possibly could. His logic is the one of a suicide bomber who, knowing that he is going to his certain death, wants to kill as many as he can together with him. At this time he is intensifying his attacks on anything that is truthful, noble, decent and just. No wonder Peter warns: “Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” 1. Peter 5:8.

But here is the good news that changes everything. Jesus Christ, the true King of Kings and Lord of Lords is risen, alive, well and powerful. He is “the first and the last, the Alpha and the Omega, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty” Rev. 1:8.17. He is “the radiance of the glory of God and the exact representation of His being”. Hebrews 1:3. He is also “the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep”. 1. Corinthians 15:20.

And Jesus is going to break the silence soon, strong and without disguise, fully displaying His power and authority. C.S. Lewis describes this long awaited culmination of the human history as the “moment when the author walks on stage” announcing that “the play is over”; a moment “so overwhelming that it will strike either irresistible love or irresistible horror into every creature”.

So, despite the chaos that seems to be engulfing the world ever more oppressively by each day, Jesus Christ is firmly in control. He who created the Universe, and whose power of creation was demonstrated most radically in His resurrection, will have the final say in the affairs of human history. This will be the moment when all the powers of Babel, powers that have always thrived on domination, control and oppression, will be “broken into pieces, like the chaff of the summer threshing floors and carried away so that no trace of them could be found.” Daniel 2:35. The last surprise, the last laugh, the last judgment, and the ultimate rescue belong to Jesus. His seeming silence is not a sign of His absence. It is a witness that Jesus is about to shake the human history again. Very soon we will all be able to see, if we haven’t become convinced yet, that thanks to Jesus the life has won for good over the darkness and death.

At this time when all good news is drowned in the accelerating waves of bad tidings, let us remember who our Lord is, and who is our true enemy. Let us remember that our “struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms”. Ephesians 6:12. At this time we are hurting, troubled and perplexed. We are pleading “How long, Sovereign Lord?” We are resisting the temptation to take the things into our own hands, because “we know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth”. Romans 8:22.

The most powerful resistance to evil, confusion of values and control of fear is demonstrated when we place our complete trust in the Lord Jesus. The most meaningful anticipation of the better world takes place when we surrender to the rule of Christ. Jesus has been, is and remains the only hope to this world. The unbelieving prefer to mock Him. He is not worthy of their pride. They are offended by His ‘weakness’. But to us who know Him and love Him despite the prevailing darkness, the bare mentioning of His name becomes our source of joy, strength and direction for each new day.

Because we know what it means that Jesus Christ is risen. We know that He is risen indeed.

All Bible quotations from NIV.

About Tihomir Kukolja

Tihomir Kukolja, born in Slavonska Pozega, Croatia in 1954. Studied, lived and worked in Yugoslavia, Croatia, United Kingdom, Australia and the US. Education in theology, communications, and radio journalism. Worked as a church pastor, media professional, radio producer and presenter, journalist, religious liberty activist, and reconciliation and leadership development activist. Lives in Baytown TX, USA with professional ties with Seattle WA, USA and Fuzine, Croatia. Currently serves as the Executive Director, Forum for Leadership and Reconciliation (Forum), and Director of Renewing Our Minds (ROM) initiative. Loves photography, blogging and social media. Views, opinions and interests expressed in this blog are those of the author and contributors alone, and do not necessarily represent the views of organizations with which the author is or has been associated in the past.
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