In Luke 24, Jesus Christ makes quite a point of telling us that it was His actual, physical, flesh-and-bones body that rose from the tomb, and that the resurrection had eternal significance precisely because it literally happened. Here are seven reasons for the importance of the literal resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth.
1. It Affirms our Greatest Message, which is Christ Himself. Many have claimed to be the founder of a religion, but only Jesus Christ has risen from the dead. Romans 1:4 says that Jesus was declared with power to be the Son of God by the resurrection from the dead. Someone rightly said, “Christianity begins where all other religions end—at the tomb, at the grave.”
2. It Meets Our Greatest Need. Romans 4:25 says, “He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.” Living, He loved me; dying, He saved me; Buried, He carried my sins far away; Rising, He justified freely forever; One day He’s coming – O glorious day!
3. It Answers Our Greatest Question, which is set forth in Job 14:14: “If a man dies, will he live again?” The resurrection of Jesus Christ demonstrates that there is life after death, and that the tomb is not the final, fatalistic termination of humanity. Jesus said, “Because I live, you will live also.”
4. It Defeats Our Greatest Enemy. Hebrews 2:14-15 says: “Since the children have flesh and blood, He too shared in their humanity so that by His death He might destroy Him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil—and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death.”
5. It Provides our Greatest Hope. Peter said, “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In His great mercy He has caused us to be born again into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil, or fade—kept in heaven for you” (1 Peter 1:3-4).
6. It Preserves our Greatest Friendship. When Jesus suddenly appeared in the Upper Room with His startled and perplexed disciples, He said to them, “Peace be with you,” John says, “Then were the disciples glad when they saw the Lord.”
7. It Fuels our Greatest Mission. Luke 24 ends with the Lord commanding His disciples to take the news of His resurrection to the ends of the earth. To them the news was too fantastic to squelch and too life-changing to keep to themselves.