But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet your spirit is alive because of righteousness. And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you.
Rev. Mary Holder Naegeli
Adjunct Instructor, Fuller Seminary
The Christian faith is a life and death matter! The life and death of Jesus Christ, which we have pondered over the last few weeks, are both significant for the life and death we experience as human beings. The Apostle Paul was well aware that the death of Jesus on our behalf was not his only calling. The thirty-three year life of Jesus accomplished something, too. He faced the challenges of mortal “weakness” without succumbing to sin (Heb 4:15), and he modeled “walking in the Spirit” as redeemed day today behavior. By giving it purpose and meaning, he proved that this life—as we know it—is worth living.
But here is the staggering news well worth remembering on this “in between day” of Holy Saturday, falling between Good Friday and Easter: The very same life that invigorated Jesus during his thirty-three years and then raised him from the dead dwells in us! Stop and think what this means, Paul urges: You have this same life now, giving energy to this old sack of bones you carry around with you every day. The Spirit that called Jesus Christ out of the grave is the same Spirit giving life to you, oh mortal. Despite your physical limitations, despite your age, despite your discouragements or the roadblocks in your path, despite your mortality, the Spirit of God is at work in you to empower life this side of death.
Experiencing this Spirit-filled life day by day actually prepares us to face our physical death with joy and anticipation of life after death. Death is a transition from this life to the next, but it is your one continuous life that is being sustained by God’s eternal Spirit. Wow!
Lord, such knowledge is too wonderful for me: that your Spirit dwells in my heart and gives me life, energy, purpose and meaning!