I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies.
What does the empty tomb of Jesus mean to us today? The empty tomb is proof that one day Christ will deliver us from death just as He said.
Hebrews 9:27 says, “It is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment.” Not one of us will escape death. Every one of us is going to die. And every second that passes moves us closer to the appointed time that has been written in indelible ink on God’s calendar. You cannot escape the certainty of death, but you can escape the consequences of death. If you and I die without our sins forgiven, then we will be separated from God forever and ever. That is what Hell is all about. But God promises that we can be delivered from the consequences of death. We can know for sure we will be ushered into His presence if we know Jesus as our Savior. Over and over again, Jesus promised to rescue His followers from the consequences of death. In John 5:24, He said, “He who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life.” In John 6:40, He said, “Everyone who beholds the Son and believes in Him will have eternal life, and I Myself will raise him up on the last day.” And in John 11:25, He said, “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies.” Jesus promises life to those who believe in Him.
Believing in Jesus does not just mean agreeing to facts about Jesus: He came, He died on the cross for the sins of the world, and He rose again on the third day. You don’t get to Heaven by believing that intellectually. Even the demons believe that. There has to be a time when you trust in Jesus for the forgiveness of your sins. The Bible says that when you confess your sins to God and put your faith completely in what Jesus did for you, then you can know for sure that God will rescue you from the grave just as He promised.
In 1988, a massive earthquake nearly destroyed Armenia. A father raced to the school where he had dropped off his son, Armand. When the father arrived at the school, his worst fears were confirmed: the school had been reduced to rubble. As tears streamed down his face, he remembered a promise he had made to his son: “Son, no matter what happens, I will always be there for you.” So he began clawing away at the stones. People tried to pull him away saying, “It is too late.” But the father remembered his promise. He dug for many hours. At the 38th hour he heard the voice of his son. He cried out, “Armand, is that you?” His son said, “Yes, it is me. I knew you would rescue me because you always said, ‘No matter what, I will be there for you.’”
In much the same way, 2,000 years ago God the Father reached down and rescued His Son from the tomb just as He said He would. And one day God will reach down and rescue those who know Christ as Savior just as He promised to do. That is why the resurrection matters.
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Three Reasons the Resurrection Matters” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2014.
Scripture quotations are taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.