“Raised With Christ” Colossians 3:1-17
Tony Campolo tells of a sermon he heard his preacher deliver with the wonderful title: “It’s Friday — But Sunday’s Comin’.” What a great summary of the Christian attitude about brokenness!
It’s Friday, it’s the day of the Cross, the day of brokenness, but Sunday, the day of Resurrection, is coming! It’s a cross now that I have to bear, but I believe a resurrection is on its way. I believe that God is ultimately in charge, and something good is therefore going to happen.
It may not be what I want to happen. It may not be what I hoped would happen. It may not be a restoration of the way things were before. But God brings about resurrection, not just resuscitation — and there is a difference.
Resurrection means new life; resuscitation means the old has been restored. Because God resurrects, God gives new situations, new surprises we never anticipated, things we may never have imagined — and they will be good.
Because of the Cross and Resurrection we can say that even the experience of death now has given way to new life through the light of Christ. The light that Christ brought into the valley of the shadow of death reveals that not even death has the last word.
If you had lived in the Roman Empire in the first century, you would have noticed a strange custom practiced by the Christians. They would go out to their graveyards with laurel wreaths — the wreaths used in Greek and Roman cultures to crown the victors of athletic contests — and place them on the graves. If you had asked them why, they would have said, “Because we believe that in Jesus Christ we have received victory over the power of death.”
You may receive this message on Friday — the actual day or a “Friday experience” in your own life. But, Sunday’s coming!
We will gather on Sunday to proclaim, along with the apostle Paul, “The sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing to the glory that is to be revealed to us!” And to celebrate that “death has been swallowed up in victory!”
I look forward to seeing you Sunday!
Grace and Peace to you,
Dr. Tim Bruster