Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Editorials

March 31, 2013

An Easter message Power of resurrection changes the course of history

How can it be possible that a carpenter from a small village in an obscure province of the only world super power now have billions of followers?

He didn’t have television, radio, Facebook or Twitter. He only preached for three years and suffered horrible unfair rejection by his own religious leaders and by the public authorities of the day. They actually executed him after torture and public humiliation. His followers fled and even denied knowing him.

What happened to turn the world upside down? What was so dramatic and life changing that his cowardly followers suddenly became such fervent spokesmen that thousands upon thousands came to believe that this humble carpenter was the Son of God?

What could make these Galilean fishermen and their fellow believers be willing to leave home and security to travel the world suffering hunger, beatings, shipwreck, jailing, rejection, torture and martyrdom? It had to be something so shocking, so earth shaking, so dramatic that it changed the course of history, the future of mankind.

That event, that undeniable historical fact was the resurrection of Jesus from the dead! Seeing Him alive after being crucified, buried and guarded woke a faith that revolutionized the world. The Prince of Peace came forth as the Conqueror of Death! He was seen of hundreds. The word spread throughout the city. People who once hid with fright boldly proclaimed the truth of a risen Savior who now had the keys to death, hell and the grave!

Beatings couldn’t discourage them. Murders didn’t stop them. Religious leaders couldn’t deny them. The truth of the resurrection shook the world and continues to shake the world. No other belief structure, no other faith is built on such a hope-giving foundation.

No wonder Christians around the world will celebrate Easter with such enthusiasm. We celebrate because we serve a Savior whose power reaches where no other being can reach, whose promise guarantees what no other teacher can give, whose life proved the power of love and whose death opened the door of salvation for all men.

Jesus Himself said it at the grave site of his friend Lazarus, “I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live.” (John 11:25)

— Dr. Ray E. Hurt

senior pastor

Princeton Church of God

Lifeline Church, Peterstown

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