(A teaching)
Dec. 20, 2003

It is said that if we do not believe in the resurrection from the dead then our faith is in vain. I stand in agreement with this statement and belief as well. But of equal importance is the realization that we as believers have that same resurrecting power "within us." To understand this we must first realize the awesome power that was at work when Christ was raised from the dead. This is the same power that was at work when the heavens and earth were first created. I recently saw a program concerning the Shroud of Turin, (the supposed burial cloth of Jesus that has undergone intense scrutiny over the last several years.) It mentioned how a great power, or electricity, was seen in the folds and fabric of this cloth. With the use of some very sophisticated machinery, one could see arcs and peaks in the image of Christ that was imprinted upon the cloth. It was pointed out that these types of images could only be wrought under a great surge of power like electricity. Quite an astounding thing.....

The power to turn-on entire regions and areas of electricity in the United States is a very strong force. We saw the evidence of this as much of the northeastern section of the U.S. lost power this past Summer of 2003. But this power that was at work then, or that failed to work then, pales in comparison to this resurrecting power that I am speaking of now.

We are told that if we have "died with Christ then we shall certainly be raised with Him. " Now I believe that this scripture has a two-fold message for us. Not only will we be raised and find eternal salvation with Him, but I believer that we are raised to partake of His resurrecting power now. Consider that we are told in Col. 1: [27] To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. If indeed, then He is "in us" then we partake of ALL those things that are "in Him." Should it be any surprise then that we could move mountains? Should it be questioned that we could heal the sick, "in HIs name," or do any of the things that He did while He was upon the earth physically? We can do ALL things through Him who strengthens Me. Now, don't get me wrong here, I'm not saying that we can do any of this on our own. Apart from Him we can not nothing. I'm also not saying that having His resurrecting power "in us" is more important than love or forgiveness, or of exhibiting Christ's character. Being conformed to His image is of paramount importance and cannot be something that we would ever dismiss from our Christian lives. However, I believe that many are perhaps unaware of what has been given to us through the resurrection of Christ. Is resurrection then just to be something that we consider like a life insurance policy? Is it something that we consider we will only possess when we are raised to be with Christ in the future? If the answer to this is yes then we have missed out on what He has given to us greatly.

Lastly then, we are told then in Eph. 1: [18] I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, [19] and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is like the working of his mighty strength, [20] which he exerted in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, [21] far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be given, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. [22] And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, [23] which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.

Many of the children's toys and probably several adult gifts, cannot work unless a battery is inserted within them. In the same token, we have the gift of Christ. It won't work properly or fully though, unless we plug it in or have the batteries of the Holy Spirit inserted. Then the juices will flow. Then everything will function fully as it was meant to. And then we will "keep going, and going, and going."

Stephen Hanson