Death is swallowed up in victory.
1 Corinthians 15.54
This Sunday we will focus on the resurrection of Jesus from the dead, our great hope even when all other hopes are gone. I don’t know about you, but I can be a worst-case scenario kind of guy. I can use worst case scenarios to help give me confidence when making a hard decision. But I can also get locked into worst case scenario thinking, which then creates anxiety and worry. When this happens, it is hard to imagine grace and a way out.
But the resurrection of Jesus doesn't just give confidence to us as we face our death beds. The resurrection of Jesus can functionally help us, when we get caught in anxiety and despair, because we are trapped in our worst-case scenarios. How? We apply the gospel of Jesus' resurrection to our circumstances and fears. What does that look like?
It can look like this. When I am anxious about getting a disease that could take away my livelihood, and slowly cause me increasing pain and disability (like Huntington's Chorea, which is what took my mom's life), I need to look beyond the disease to the resurrection. With the resurrection of Jesus, my worst case is not disability and death, it is a restored and fully healed body, a body that will never experience decay again. Because of the resurrection of Jesus, I have a hope that no disease can touch. This hope gives me strength and confidence in the bleakest of times. It is at this point, when I have a choice to make. Will I rest my hopes on my worst-case scenario of a disease or on the worst-case scenario (if we can call it that) of my resurrection from the dead? A resurrection Jesus secured for me by his death and resurrection.
This same gospel truth can be applied to a myriad of fears and worst-case scenarios. Our greatest enemy has been swallowed up in victory. May we live more hope-filled lives, because our greatest hope cannot be taken away. Hope swallows up fear and despair.