By Bob Barney
It was a Saturday night in AD 30, when after three days and three nights, something supernatural occurred. The dead body of the man named Jesus (the Christ-or the messiah) who was horribly beaten and killed to pay the price for our sins, quickened back to life. It was dark, and the guards that were placed outside the tomb were horrified of what they saw. They reported back to the priests, who then met with the elders and made a plan. They knew this was bad news and it meant trouble. So, they decided to pay the soldiers a large amount of money and said to them, “Tell the people that Jesus’ followers came during the night and stole the body while you were asleep. If the governor hears about this, we will satisfy him and save you from trouble.” So the soldiers kept the money and did as they were told. The Bible also tells us this: "And that story is still spread among the people even today."
Jesus had told his followers that the sign that he would die, and be raised from the dead was this. "As Jonah was in the belly of the great fish for three days and nights, so also, I, the son of man will be in the heart of the earth for the same three days and three nights." Jesus died on a Wednesday afternoon on April the third, 30 AD. Thursday afternoon was after the 1st day, Friday, the second and Saturday the third, when He lived again!
We do not know from scripture the time that Jesus rose from the dead. The idea that it had to be exactly 72 hours is ridiculous. It would have been light at 3PM, and the guards story would never have been believed. We do know from scripture that he rose BEFORE the first day of the week, Sunday which started at sunrise. So sometimes Saturday night, after it was dark, and the guards' "sleeping story" could be believed, Jesus rose from the dead.
This moment in history, that we remember here tonight, IS THE MOST IMPORTANT TIME IN ALL HISTORY of mankind. It is the most important time in your lives as well. For on this day, our God died for our sins, and we have been forgiven of anything that we have ever done, if we just ask for it! Your destiny, which is eternal DEATH has now been changed. Since Jesus was the first BORN AGAIN human being in all existence, HE made it possible for you to be BORN AGAIN after you die. You see, being born again is not some religious experience, it is the act of being resurrected from the dead and becoming a spirit!
The biblical illustration of being "born again" is analogous to the physical birth process. The spiritual regeneration that occurs at baptism is compared to begettal by one's father. Following begettal, we must grow and develop as Christians just as a fetus must grow and develop inside the mother before it is ready to be born. The Bible compares the actual birth to the resurrection. This is made clear in John 3:6 when Jesus told Nicodemus: "That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit." Paul explained in 1 Corinthians 15:50–53 that, while flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God, we will be changed into immortal spirit at the resurrection.
Just as the wind possesses great power yet is invisible, so also will those be who have actually been born of the Spirit(John 3:8). In this life we have been like Adam—having a physical, mortal body. After the resurrection from the dead, we will have a glorified spirit body—just like Jesus Christ following His resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:43–49; Revelation 1:13–15). Our "vile body" will be changed to be like His "glorious body" (Philippians 3:21). Jesus Christ no longer grows tired or hungry. He is no longer subject to pain or death. Rather, He emerged from the grave never to die again! Jesus was restored to the glory that He shared with the Father before the world was, and now sits at the Father's right hand as our Intercessor and soon-coming King (John 17:4; Hebrews 4:14–16).
In Colossians 1:18 and Revelation 1:5, Jesus Christ is called the "firstborn from the dead." In Romans 8:29, He is termed the "firstborn among many brethren." This clearly implies that we will also be "born from the dead"! The Greek term translated "firstborn" is prototokos. Protos is a Greek word meaning "first in order and importance." This meaning is demonstrated by its use as a prefix in English words such as "prototype."
While the Bible uses many analogies to characterize true Christians—such as new-born babes in 1 Peter 2:2, adolescent children in Hebrews 12:6–7, living stones to be constructed into a spiritual temple in 1 Peter 2:5 or parts of the human body in 1 Corinthians 12:12—the new birth nevertheless remains the most powerful and completedescription of what is literally involved in our entrance into the Kingdom of God. It explains what salvation is really all about—becoming literal sons of God (Hebrews 2:10).
Right now, true Christians are heirs, but not yet inheritors. Christ makes it plain that it is only at the resurrection, "When the Son of Man shall come in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him..." that He will say to the resurrected saints, "Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom" (Matthew 25:31, 34). Jesus Christ clearly revealed to His disciples in Matthew 24:13 that only those who endure and persevere to the very end will be saved. God has a great ultimate purpose. He is reproducing Himself in us! We can be in God's Family as fully born children—younger brothers of Jesus Christ who was the firstborn of many brethren (Romans 8:29)." SOURCE
So you see, Jesus resurrection is the most important thing to ever happen in your life. Most ironically don't have a clue about tonight's meaning, and their destiny. Hopefully reading this, you do now.