02/16

Life Has a Name

“I am the resurrection and the life…” John 11:25

Jesus told us, “I am the resurrection…” One meaning for this noun “resurrection” in the Greek New Testament means to be set into place like a stone. As a stone, some will use Christ to climb up, and others will run into Him and fall down. As the resurrection, if you receive Christ, you will be raised with Him. If you reject Him as the resurrection, you will be brought down. For some, Jesus is a rock to build on, a cornerstone, because they receive Him. To others He is a stumbling stone, because they reject him. However, Christ is put in place as our way to life.

Jesus also said, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me (John 14:6).” Jesus didn’t say this to be manipulative or dogmatic; He was stating a fact. The only way to the Father is through Him because Jesus was the only one who could shed His blood to pay the price for the judgment against us because of our fallen, separated, condition through the rebellious nature that came through disobedience. Sin caused us to crash down into a prison we could not be freed from. Jesus came to die our death, go into that prison, get the keys that locked us in, free us, and raise us to new life. He died, He was bound, He paid the ransom, God raised Him from the dead.

I love the account of Peter when he was freed from prison. In Acts 12:7 it says that there was light and an angel raised him up who said, “Arise quickly!” And the chains fell off Peter’s hands. Peter was either lying or sitting down, chained down, and the angel grabbed him and lifted him up. How illustrative this is, not only of our resurrection, but of Christ’s resurrection as well. We were chained down, but lifted up out of the darkness of prison and into the light of new life.

Jesus is the resurrection because He was the first one of many to be raised from the dead. He made the way! In Colossians 1:18 it talks about Jesus being the head of the church, the firstborn from the dead, so that in all things He may have the preeminence. When we initially receive Christ and make Him our Lord, we receive His resurrection life and our spirit is reborn. As we live each day surrendered to His Lordship, not only does Christ lift us up from death; but He also has the power of life to free us from any addiction, any sin, or any bondage. You can rise up in His life and His power! Life has a name. His name is Jesus!

Application: The tithe was the first of any increase, and like the firstborn, God said it belonged to Him. Why the first portion? The tithe is symbolic of Christ. When we honor God by giving Him our tithe, we are honoring Christ, our salvation. The next time you tithe, think about your salvation.

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