The Resurrection of the Dead Acts 24: 14-15 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
When Paul defended himself before Felix he said that there shall be a resurrection of the dead. There are times when you have to look further down the road than your current timeframe. When you are enduring something that doesn’t seem to make sense or from which you are not getting relief, you need to remember that there is going to be a resurrection. Notice how looking to the resurrection of the dead helped or will help the following:
Job – Job 19:25-27 – Job saw no way out of his suffering. But when he looked further down the road, he saw the resurrection and was encouraged by knowing that one day he would stand before God in his flesh and see him with his own eyes. His suffering obviously made no sense to him; it didn’t make any sense to his friends, either. However, God used it prove to the devil that his men would suffer for him more than the devil’s men would suffer for him. And he used it to reveal to and remove from Job his self-righteousness, the way he will for the Jews in the tribulation.
Abraham – Gen 22 – Abraham and Sarah had waited nearly 25 years for God to give them a child. And then when Isaac was a young man, God told Abraham to offer him for a burnt offering. There is no way that could have made any sense to Abraham apart from the resurrection of the dead [Heb 11:17-19]. God had promised to make Abraham’s seed as the stars of heaven and this was to be fulfilled through Isaac.
Martha – Jn 11:21-26 – Martha, Mary and Lazarus were close friends of Jesus. Martha couldn’t figure out why Jesus didn’t prevent his death. She was broken hearted over Lazarus’ death. Yet, she was comforted knowing that he would rise from the dead. Only, she didn’t realize that Jesus would raise him so soon. Often, we must be comforted after the death of a loved one by remembering that we will see them again.
Jesus – Heb 12:1-4 – Jesus was able to endure the contradiction of sinners against himself and the death of the cross because he knew that he would rise from the dead. The people who had greeted him with “Hosanna to the Son of David” upon his arrival in Jerusalem were the same ones who cried out “Crucify him” five days later. You have to look past your present circumstances to the resurrection to get through some of the things you will face in life.
Israel – Ezek 37:1-14 – when the world is going through the great tribulation, the remnant in Israel is going to have to look to the resurrection of the dead in order to handle the terrible events unfolding with the opening of the seals, the sounding of the trumpets and the pouring out of the vials. They will receive just enough encouragement to endure to the end.
Us – 1 Pet 1:3-9 – there are times when God asks you to do something or to go through something that is nearly impossible to endure. At that time, you will have to look all the way to the resurrection to be able to handle it. And the hope of the resurrection will give you the ability to “rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory.”
Conclusion: we are like clay comfortable in our secure environment until God, the potter, begins to kneed us, spin us around on the wheel, stick us in the kiln, glaze us, and return us to the kiln for more firing until he finally gets the vessel he’s looking for. Keep your eyes on the potter and on the assurance that the finished product (our glorified bodies) at the resurrection will be worth it all. When life is tough, remember the resurrection of the dead.
And take note that the resurrection includes the just and the unjust. That is, those who have not received Jesus will rise to judgment and an eternity in the lake of fire. We must tell them about Jesus so they can rise as the just. And if you aren’t saved here today, you must be born again now to rise with a glorified body later.