"...And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is vain, your faith also is vain." I Corinthinas 15:14
Christ is Risen! Indeed, He is Risen! This traditional orthodox greeting will be heard in millions of churches around the world this Easter Sunday. It is known as the "Paschal Greeting" taken from the Latanized spelling of the Hebrew word "Pesach" or "Passover".
Many times we shrink back at the mention of the word tradition and quite honestly many traditions unfortunately become meaningless half-hearted attempts at going through the motions of some long forgotten ritual. But many others are timeless and powerful. The Paschal Greeting seems to be at the top of that list.
I love the directness of the Apostle Paul in I Corinthians 15:14. He is basically telling those struggling Corinthian christians, "Listen up folks! If Jesus Christ did not rise from the dead, then my preaching is a waste of time and, by the way, your faith is a waste of time as well."
The resurrection is central to all that we are and proclaim to be as believers. It is the focal point for everything that we are and believe and do--it defines us!
Sadly, I must confess that I am so often defined by pride, worry, concern and frustration. This is an obvious sign that my focal point is so often--me. Forgive me, Lord. As a follower I am to reflect You to this hurting world.
There is beautiful old chorus that our church often sings at our Sunrise Service each Easter:
I live, I live because You have risen
I live, I live to worship You
Thank you, Jesus
Thank you, Jesus
Because You're alive, because You're alive
Because You're alive--I live.
Christ is Risen! Indeed He is Risen!