ODJ: happy endings

May 4, 2014 

READ: 1 Corinthians 15:12-58 

In fact, Christ has been raised from the dead. He is the first of a great harvest of all who have died (v.20).

The 1995 film Apollo 13 contains two famous radio transmissions:

The first: “Houston, we have a problem.”

And then:

“Hello, Houston . . . this is Odyssey. It’s good to see you again.”

Together, these two messages form the bookends to the real life drama of NASA’s struggle to bring three astronauts safely back to earth. An explosion crippled their spacecraft partway into their April 1970 mission to the moon.

The minutes leading up to the second of the two radio transmissions were particularly dramatic as people the world over anxiously gathered around television sets and collectively held their breath to see if the crew survived reentry into the earth’s atmosphere. Cheers and tears of joy and relief exploded across the globe when the astronauts finally returned home unharmed.

Not every story has a thrilling, happy ending like Apollo 13. But the Bible reveals that those who believe in Jesus will experience one! Much as the crew of Apollo 13 endured, life as we know it can be an ordeal and it will inevitably break our hearts. Death and decay will take away our health and every person we love. But the sacrificial death and dramatic resurrection of Jesus Christ guarantees the happiest of endings.

This is the “happily ever after” that Paul wrote about in offering hope and comfort to those in need (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18). Quoting the Old Testament prophet Isaiah, Paul confidently declared the future resurrection of the dead when he wrote, “Death is swallowed up in victory” (1 Corinthians 15:54).

Sometimes, all can seem lost, especially when death takes those we love. But the truth of the cross and the empty tomb emboldens us with the hope for a happy ending that is beyond description. —Jeff Olson

Esther 3:1-15 ‹365-day plan

Read Philippians 1:21 and consider Paul’s view of his life and future in Christ.  
What does Jesus’ resurrection mean to you? How does the happy ending Jesus has made possible affect the way you think and live?