One of the main differences between human beings and animals is the ability of people to have a sense of belief in the existence of a super natural being that controls all the activities and events in the universe. Human beings have developed a very complicated belief in the existence and work of these super natural forces that has led to the establishment of different religions in the world.
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Some of these religions include Christianity which is practiced world wide in various forms. Christianity is derived from the word Christ which refers to Jesus Christ and is therefore used to mean behavior that is similar to that of Jesus Christ that is emulated by those who follow the Bible’s teachings.
This term paper is aimed at outlining the background and interpretation of the resurrection in the New Testament as is evident in Christian’s lives.
Definition of Resurrection
Resurrection refers to the process where a dead body comes back to life. It is a very unique and shocking occurrence that medical scientists and contemporary philosophers have failed to understand or explain. This is due to the fact that death marks the end of human life and therefore breaks the association between an individual and the rest of the community.
Death is a phenomenon that has no empirical formulae of studying or analyzing and it is only through religious intuitions that human beings try to unravel the mysteries behind the occurrence and aftermath of death and the life after.
Background of the Resurrection
The history of the resurrection is dated back to the beginning and life of Jesus Christ and is marked by a sequence of various events that hinted on the coming of Jesus Christ. Since life begun on earth people had always been born and lived for very many years before their death occurred (Keener 201).
There were no strange occurrences of deaths as most of them involved the very old people who had reached their life expectancy limit and in fact gone beyond their time on earth. However, with time things and events changed and prophets came and went until the coming of Jesus Christ that was foretold by many prophets including Elijah and John the Baptist.
Even though the cases of resurrection were unknown before the coming of Jesus Christ very few of them were actually recorded like the dry bones in the ‘Valley of Death’ that were prophesized by Prophet Elijah and they got muscles and became live human beings.
With the coming of Jesus Christ that is heavily documented in the New Testament very many cases of resurrection were experienced and they were climaxed by the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Jesus performed many miracles regarding the resurrection of the dead and some of those people include Lazarus who had died, was buried and his body had stayed on the tomb for several days until he had begun to decompose and smell awfully.
These events of resurrections taught many Christian believers many lessons and this led to the many interpretations of resurrection that are discussed in the following stages.
Sacrifice for Human Beings
The resurrection of Jesus Christ is interpreted by all Christians as being a great act of sacrifice for the deliverance and forgiveness of sins committed by human beings through the various generations. When God created Adam and Eve and placed them in the Garden of Eden, He expected them to be very loyal to him and follow all His words to the latter.
The worst sin that Adam and Eve committed while in the Garden of Eden was disobeying God’s command of not touching or eating the fruits from the tree in the middle of the garden.
Their disobedience was triggered by the serpent that cheated them of the value of the fruits and this led to their excommunication from the Garden of Eden marking the beginning of sin and suffering in the generations that followed.
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However, due to the love that God had for his people He was not pleased to see them suffer and continue sinning and therefore, he sent his son Jesus Christ to come and die for the sake of human beings (Licona 2010). This act shows a lot of sacrifice by God and Jesus Christ who endured very painful experiences which led to his death.
Christians interpret the suffering, crucifixion, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ as a great sacrifice for their sake and continue to celebrate this through Easter holidays in their calendars. It is not easy for someone to lay down his life and suffer for the sake of another human being, but Jesus Christ proved his love for human beings by sacrificing his life for them.
Proof of Power over Death
Every human being is always confronted by a hard fact that one day they will die and leave this world regardless of their wealth or fame. Very many people spend countless nights thinking about their future and the inevitable occurrence of death that has made them think that death is so powerful and strong that no one can overcome it.
However, with the death and resurrection of Jesus that is widely documented in the New Testament people are made to believe that death is not supreme over Christians.
They believe that Jesus conquered death through resurrecting other people like Lazarus and through his resurrection (Beale 2011).
They interpret all these resurrections as manifestations of the Christian power over death and that they should never be worried about dying since it is just a transitional stage that they have to pass through in order to attain the higher glory of the Kingdom of Heaven.
Proof of Life after Death
Many people have always known death as a mark of the end of life and therefore when one dies it becomes the end of the person’s story of existence, accomplishments and failures in life. When a person dies the family, relatives and friends are usually filled with sorrow and mourn for days on end due to the loss of their loved ones.
However, Christians believe that death marks the beginning of a happier and everlasting life and so people should never be worried and mourn whenever it occurs to their loved ones but instead be happy and pray very hard for them to go to heaven when their time comes.
Christians believe that the resurrection of the dead marks the beginning of such life that will be celebrated throughout their life in heaven (Ivy 2010). The resurrection of Jesus proved to the millions of believers that death is not the final stage of their living but just a transitional stage to Heaven.
Therefore, Christians interpret his resurrection as a clear indication that when those who believe in him die, they will resurrect and join him later in life. This gives them more hope to continue believing and worshipping him as they wait for their death that will connect them with their Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ.
Foundation of Hope and Christian Faith
People usually have very many questions regarding what will happen when and after their life on earth ends. This has led people to various beliefs and practices that aim at giving them the assurance of good life after death. Christians believe that the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus were as a result of their sins and so they affirm their faith to having life after death through the resurrection of Jesus.
It is upon these grounds that people get saved and declare Jesus as their savior since he died for the sake of their sins. This continues to attract thousands of people to the Christian faith as the resurrection of the dead provides solace and promise of life after death to them.
This also enables them to continue reading the bible, attend churches and Christian crusades to know more about the Kingdom of God that awaits them after death.
Challenge to Christian Declarations
The suffering, death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus serve as a great challenge to the Christian faith with regard to their declarations and affirmations of their faith in God.
It acts as a guide to the behavior and conduct of all Christians with regard to their faith and beliefs (Carson 2012). Christians usually have personal declarations, obligations and commitments to God and are always obliged to follow and adhere to them all the days of their lives.
In addition, the Ten Commandments that were offered to Moses on Mount Sinai act as a vey important tool for every Christian to follow and respect. This together with the resurrection of Jesus helps many Christians and in the process of assessing their faith and stand in Christianity.
All human beings are social creatures by nature and require each other for companionship and socialization. It should be noted that people need each other to provide emotional support to each other with regard to the experiences that human beings encounter in the daily association with their friends and environment.
The resurrection of Jesus Christ and his ascension is interpreted by Christians as a connection between him and them although in the spiritual realm. Christians believe that Jesus is constantly and always with them throughout their lives as they too await their death (Carson 2012).
It should be noted that Christian faith is largely penned on the fact that Jesus Christ suffered, died, was buried and resurrected to be with them for eternal life and those who trust and obey the Christian rules will be rewarded by eternal life.
Christians are thus comforted that even though Jesus died he resurrected and is with them together with the Holy Spirit that was sent to watch over and be companions to all who believe in Christ.
All human beings are always guided by a desire to achieve the set goals with regard to all their commitments, efforts and dedications. People who believe in the resurrection of Jesus Christ are guided by the assurances that the bible and other Christian publications offer them with regard to the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
The main assurance of the resurrection of Jesus Christ is the fact that all who believe in him will enter the kingdom of heaven. When Jesus resurrected he ascended to heaven to prepare a place for all those people who will affirm their faith in him and continue to proclaim his work through their lives.
This means that they are expecting better and good things to come after they have died and resurrected. First, they are guided by high hopes of resurrecting just like Jesus did. Secondly, they are expecting to enter the Kingdom of Heaven where Jesus is seated at the right hand of God awaiting their arrival.
Thirdly, they are expecting a good life without pain or suffering but one filled with praises, worships and celebrations of lives well lived.
The Christian faith strongly advocates for its followers to ignore their present sufferings and temptations as they are stepping stones towards achieving their dreams. They are guided by the fact that the death of Jesus Christ paved way for their deliverance and all those who believe and follow the teachings of this faith will enter the Kingdom of God after death (Licona 20110).
This assurance pushes all Christians to prepare to meet their creator and enjoy all that the Bible promises all those who will keep the Christian torch burning in them until when their death occurs.
The Christian faith is largely attributed to the life and times of Jesus Christ as many Christians try to emulate his behavior. The resurrection of Jesus Christ serves as a turning point for many Christians who were destined for eternal punishment due to their sins while on earth.
It should be noted that Christian faith is very much affirmed on the belief that just like Jesus Christ they will die and resurrect and join the many prophets and people who died for the sake of preaching the gospel and those who never allowed suffering or persecution to deter their quest for the word of God.
Beale, G. K. (2011). New Testament Biblical Theology: The Unfolding of the Old Testament in the New Testament. New York: Baker Academic Publishers.
Carson, D. A. (2012). The Intolerance of Tolerance. New York: W. M. B. Erdmann’s Publishers.
Ivy, J. (2010). The Resurrection of Jesus Christ: A Biblicist’s View of the Resurrection. New York: Noiz Inc. Publishers.
Keener, C. (2011). Miracles: The Credibility of the New Testament Accounts. New York: Baker Academic Publishers.
Licona, M. (2010). The Resurrection of Jesus: A New Historiography Approach. Oxford: I.V.P. Academic Publishers.