John 11:25-26 reads,
“Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, 26 and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?”
Jesus said this of Himself. He revealed this trait of who He is, so it is important to understand what it means that Jesus is the resurrection and the life. What is resurrection? It’s simplest definition is, “the act of causing something that had ended or been forgotten or lost to exist again, to be used again” or “the state of one risen from the dead.” (Merriam-Webster, 2014).
In Judaism and Christianity we look forward to the prophesied resurrection that will bring us into Eternity. In Ezekiel chapter 37 The Lord shows Ezekiel a vision of resurrection. Ezekiel is a valley of dry bones and God has him prophesy to the bones and as he does, the bones grow muscles, sinew, and skin, but they remain dead until God tells Ezekiel to prophesy to the breath and when Ezekiel does, the breath enters them and they stand up and become a great army. Ezekiel 37:12-14 read,
“Therefore prophesy, and say to them, Thus says the Lord God: Behold, I will open your graves and raise you from your graves, O my people. And I will bring you into the land of Israel. 13 And you shall know that I am the Lord, when I open your graves, and raise you from your graves, O my people.14 And I will put my Spirit within you, and you shall live, and I will place you in your own land. Then you shall know that I am the Lord; I have spoken, and I will do it, declares the Lord.”
Isaiah 26:19 describes our ultimate resurrection this way,
“Your dead shall live; their bodies shall rise.
You who dwell in the dust, awake and sing for joy!
For your dew is a dew of light,
and the earth will give birth to the dead.”
After Jesus’ resurrection we learned more clearly about our own expected resurrection.
1 Thessalonians 4:16-18 reads,
“For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.17 Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord.18 Therefore encourage one another with these words.”
But Jesus didn’t say, “I will be the resurrection.” He said, “I am.”
His Godly statement gives us hope that we do not have to wait until He returns to receive the new life He promises. He gives new life now. He doesn’t only give it. He is the source. We learned in John 1:1-5 that Jesus is the Word, God’s will manifested, that in Him is the life, and everything was created by Him and through Him and for Him.
Jesus is the source of our physical life and our spiritual life. Death entered the world when Adam and Eve sinned. Life entered the world when Jesus rose from the dead. 1 Corinthians 15:22 reads, “For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive.”
Believer, you once were dead, but now you live. You once had no hope, you could only look forward to eternal death after your physical life ended. But now, you await eternal life in New Jerusalem with Jesus. But that life begins the moment you accept Jesus as Christ your Savior. Jesus said, “Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die.” (John 11:25-26). He gives you life the instant you believe and it is eternal.
2 Corinthians 5:15-17 reads,
“and he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised.
16 From now on, therefore, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we once regarded Christ according to the flesh, we regard him thus no longer. 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”
Jesus gave you life when you believed. He continually makes possible your physical and spiritual life. And one day, Believer, you will rise up transformed in an instant to spend eternity with Christ. Though we look forward to our eventual resurrection, we are called to live resurrected now.
Jesus came to save everyone. He doesn’t want to stop with just you and the Ladies Auxiliary, and the church deacons. He died so all men could live. That includes your racist neighbor, the hooker, the junkie, the sweet lady with 11 cats, and the atheist who has been slandering you. They’re dead. But Jesus is the resurrection and the life. He wants to breathe life into their dry bones. Just as Ezekiel spoke God’s word in his vision and brought life to the bones, you, Christian are called to speak life into the remains of the world.
When Jesus told Martha that He was the resurrection and the life and that whoever believed in Him would have eternal life, He asked her if she believed. She said to him, “Yes, Lord; I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, who is coming into the world.” (John 11:27).
Don’t keep the awesome gift of God’s grace to yourself. Jesus is the resurrection and the life. That is awesome and desperately needed news for the dead. If you are alive, you are Jesus’ representative, you are salt and light. Express your love of God by doing His will which is that none will perish but all should reach repentance. (2 Peter 3:9).