“In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. . . And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:4, 14).
There are 60 major prophecies that are fulfilled in the life of Christ. Josh McDowell writes in his book “Evidence That Demands a Verdict” that, by using the science of probability in reference to all 60 major prophecies, the chances that any man might have fulfilled all 60 is humanly impossible. Reason demands that we accept Jesus as the fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecies of the Messiah. Jesus is not just another inspirational leader. He was God in the flesh. God, who has previously made Himself known through a nation, and through a law, has now come and reconciled the world to Himself through a man, a God-man, Jesus.
It is the morning after Christ’s resurrection and the word is spreading like wildfire that the crucified Jesus is alive. The people are in a panic, as are their leaders in the Temple. They wanted to live to themselves, with their hopes, promises and dreams, but God had answered their prayers and many did not know it. Some had prayed for contrition and begged for it to be given them at any cost. A few had asked for purity, but He sent them the purest! Others had prayed for meekness and Jesus broke their hearts, they had prayed to be dead to this world and alive in him. Remarkably, one offered to lay down his life for him, and when he was offered his cross it devastated his courage.
What have we gained in Jesus’s resurrection? He has saved us from the sting of death, in spite of our sinful selves. We cannot count nor keep track of the times our feet have slipped off the straight and narrow path, but Jesus in mercy lifts us up. Now, two thousand fifteen years later, we know that all Jesus did, Jesus did well and he did it for our benefit. It is beyond human understanding that he would suffer here, that he would reign hereafter. We must accept and bear our crosses here below as Jesus did, without the cross here below there is no crown above. We must thank God that not our will be done, but His will be done in us and through us just like Jesus.
It is the morning after and Jesus has saved us as the Father promised. “God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world” (Galatians 6:14). Before, we had only heard of the mystery, but now we can feel it. Jesus has laid on us his love, as He did Mary and Peter. They had no choice but to follow him and nor do we. Jesus came to correct everything that was wrong. To destroy the evils of the world and the last enemy to be destroyed is Death, his resurrection is our victory over death and the promise of the resurrection to eternal life.
Today, we remember Jesus lifted up, in our mind’s eye we gaze upon the glory which radiates from the wounds of his holy passion; and as we gaze we advance and are changed into his likeness. His name shines out and through us, he dwells in us, we are Christians. As such, we cannot stand in awe and fear, as Jacob at Bethel, or Eliphaz in the night visions, or as the apostles when they thought that they had seen a spirit, and knew not that it was Jesus. In ignorance they would almost pray him to depart from them, or to hide his awfulness.
It is the morning after and it is easier to obey than to suffer, to do than to give up, to bear the cross than to hang upon it. We cannot go back, for we have come too near the unseen cross, and its virtues have pierced too deeply within us. Jesus has fulfilled for us his promise, “And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me” (John 12:32). It is the morning after, are you closer to Jesus today than yesterday? Don’t put it off, feel him drawing you to him, and come to him. God has done what He promised and so should we. Such, are they in all ages; “These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth” (Revelation 14:4).
Grady Norman Greene, Minister of the Gospel of Jesus Our Christ