The Power of Resurrection by Dr. Saphir Athyal
Paul says, “That I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being conformed to his death” (Philippians 3:10). Also, “We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. (Romans 6:4).
Only in suffering there is real victory. One Sarvodaya leader whom I invited to UBS in Pune, saw on the facade of the main building the emblem of an open Bible with a cross in the middle hugged by a flame of fire. He said, “How true is the emblem. Only in experiences of cross one receives light” – insight of a Hindu learned from following Mahatma Gandhi.
One cannot know the power of the Resurrection without first going the way of the cross. A seed has in it the potential of a gigantic tree. But as Jesus said it has to fall on the ground and die – “crucified with Christ”. Christ’s suffering that led to his ‘resurrection’ and “glory of the cross”, was so clearly predicted in Isaiah 53.
The kingdom of evil, falsehood and darkness at war with the kingdom of love, truth and light – the war at its fiercest stage ever during the week of Christ’s crucifixion. That is when double victory was won – first at the cross, the meeting point of the fathomless love of God and his firm justice, and second the victory over death by Christ’s resurrection. Resurrection was the necessary sequence of the victory won on the cross.
Resurrection power is the power that conquers sin and all that ‘death’ represents.
Resurrection power is the power given to us to be God’s children through the atoning death of Christ.
Resurrection power is the power offered to us to live victoriously every day in the power of the Holy Spirit
Resurrection power is the power that will raise us all on the last day for our eternal life with God.
Resurrection power is the power God gives us even to suffer for him to remain faithful to the gospel truth –
increasingly true in India.
Resurrection power is much more than all the above: it is limitless because it is the power of the Almighty.
For anyone going through any painful experiences, the risen Lord is near offering ‘Easter’ victory and his peace. Following the prayer of Paul for the believers (Eph 1:18-20) –
I wish and pray that you increasingly know the power of Christ’s resurrection in your life and service of him!
In Christ and for Him,
Dr. Saphir Athyal, ’83