Pastor's Note
A Word From the Pastor, Reverend, Joshua B. Shuster

Reverend, Joshua B. Shuster
Senior Pastor,
Reverend, Joshua B. Shuster
From "For nearly forty years, the Wide World of Sports program on ABC featured sporting events such as hurling, curling, jai-alai, rodeo, Mexican cliff diving, and badminton, among others. As announcer Jim McKay intoned over the opening credits, sports provided "the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat." Our passage today describes the most thrilling victory ever accomplished in all of history: Jesus' triumph over the power of death. Because of our identity in Christ, we also share in this victory.

The opening verses of this chapter (1 Corinthians 15) are likely part of an ancient hymn or creed of belief about Jesus: "Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures" (vv. 3–4). The apostle Paul reminds the church in Corinth of the fundamentals of their faith in order to address a theological error: some taught that believers in Christ would not actually be resurrected from the dead. Paul argues that we can have confidence in the resurrection of believers because we know Jesus was resurrected, and believers in Him share in this blessing of eternal life.

Jesus' death and then resurrection in triumph over death are the foundation of our hope (vv. 12–19). If He is not alive now, then we have based our faith on a dead god who is powerless to save us. But we know He is alive—He was seen by hundreds of witnesses (vv. 6–8) and He continues to transform the lives of those who trust Him. Death will never have the last word over believers in Jesus. We share in His victory (vv. 50–57). Our bodies will be transformed and we will be able to dwell with God forever. We should join in thanks to God who gives us this victory in Christ!”

Whether Easter falls on April Fools or not, the resurrection for you and me represents victory over death! So as we take a moment to be thankful for the warmer weather that is arriving, may we also be thankful for what we cerebrate at the beginning of this month. A celebration that our lives will never be the same. Thanks be to God!
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