ODJ: “the”

April 26, 2014 

READ: Acts 13:13-43 

The promise was made to our ancestors and God has now fulfilled it for us, their descendants, by raising Jesus (vv.32-33).

A panda walked into a café and ordered a sandwich. He ate it and then pulled a gun out and shot the waiter. The panda then slammed a badly punctuated wildlife manual onto the table. “Look me up,” he growled as he walked out the door. The wounded waiter opened the book to the entry for “panda”. It read, “Panda: large, black and white bear-like mammal native to China. Eats, shoots & leaves.” This story illustrates the unfortunate consequences of a misplaced comma (the book should have read, “Eats shoots and leaves”).

Little things can make a big difference. Take the definite article “the”. This Easter many people will speak of the resurrection as if it were a concept, an encouraging promise that life will improve if only we hold on until spring. They’re right to hope that a brighter day is dawning, but only because of the historic resurrection of Jesus (Acts 2:29-31). The empty tomb is a hard fact, not a soft platitude about the power of positive thinking.

The resurrection of Christ motivates us to live well precisely because it takes care of the big stuff. It solves our problem of sin. Paul declared, “Through this man Jesus there is forgiveness for your sins. Everyone who believes in him is declared right with God” (Acts 13:38-39). It solves our problem of death. Paul assured us that “just as God raised Christ Jesus from the dead, he will give life to your mortal bodies” (Romans 8:11).

The resurrection transforms believers into saints who will live forever, which rouses us to “always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless” (1 Corinthians 15:58). Be inspired. Believe in the resurrection. —Mike Wittmer
2 Kings 11:1-21 ‹365-day plan

Read Romans 6:1-14 to learn about the difference the resurrection of Jesus should make in our lives. 
What have you done today that would make no sense if Jesus hadn’t risen from the dead? What will you do to show that you believe in the resurrection?