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Jesus Christ - He Is Risen

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Jesus Christ
He Is Risen From The Dead

Jesus Christ, He Is Risen - - - Truely, He Is Risen, Today
Why Do You Seek The Living Among The Dead?


  O Flower of Jesse's stem, you have been raised up as a sign for all peoples; kings stand silent in your presence; the nations bow down in worship before you. Come, let nothing keep you from coming to our aid.
In the Old Testament Jesse is the Father of King David. The Messiah was to come from the line of King David and therefore would be the ultimate creation of that line. Jesus is this flower adorning the line of King David and stands as a sign to all nations of the saving power of God.

Evidence of resurrection
Easter Sunday is the day Christians celebrate the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus. But, did he really rise again? If he didn't, then he was a liar — or a madman. If he didn't rise again, then our faith is useless and there is no life after death. The whole Bible is a lie, in fact, if Jesus didn't rise again.

There is real evidence that the resurrection of Jesus actually happened – it is not just a myth? Some of the evidence that Jesus’ resurrection really did happen follows:

First, the reliability of the Scriptures. There are more than 25,000 manuscripts of the Greek New Testament. Some manuscripts date to within 100 years of the autographs (the original writings) and all agree with each other. (There are minor differences, but there are so many copies available that they can be look at and a very accurate picture of what the New Testament writers can be arrived at.) What this means is that the Bible is extremely reliable as a historical document.

Second, there are writings of historians outside the Bible that corroborate the stories within it. These historians, like Pliny the Younger, Ptolemy, Tacitus and Josephus, not only mention kings, governors, dates and places found in the Bible, they also mention the disciples and Jesus himself.

Third, the empty tomb. The Gospel writers all mention that the tomb was empty Easter Sunday morning. If there had been a body there, the Romans or Jewish leaders could have shown it and that would have ended Christianity right then and there. Remember, the tomb was well guarded. Also, in the Bible, women saw the empty tomb first — that would never happen in Jewish fiction of that day, so it must have been true.

Fourth, Paul wrote in First Corinthians that 500 people saw Jesus after his resurrection. Paul wrote this about 20 years after the resurrection and points out that most of them were still alive and could verify what they saw. No one disputes the validity and historicity of Paul or First Corinthians, and 500 people do not have the same hallucination.

Fifth, why would the early Christians have celebrated Communion and Baptism if Jesus had remained dead? History teaches that the Christians began celebrating The Lord’s Supper within 20 years of Jesus’ resurrection. Communion commemorates the sacrificial death of Jesus by celebrating the blood he shed and how his body was broken. Why would they do this if Jesus’ death had been meaningless? This would be like celebrating his death instead of his life and legacy. Further, the early Christians changed the meaning of baptism from a Jewish cleansing ritual to mean "buried with Christ and raised to life with him." (Romans 6:4).

Sixth, why would the disciples die for a lie? We see in the Gospels that they were basically cowards. Why did these timid lambs suddenly change into the lions of the faith? Yes, people die for what they believe is true, but people do not die for what they know is NOT true. History says all of the disciples died for their faith except John.

Seventh, the emergence and growth of the church. The church started with a small rag tag group of mostly poor people who were murdered and persecuted for their belief. Within two hundred years, it conquered Rome. Today dogs are named Nero and Caesar and children named Peter, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John and Paul. Thousands of churches and changed lives stand as a testament to the resurrection.

Eighth, the conversion of skeptics. Scores of non-believers, including Paul and many agnostics and atheists, have put their faith in Christ after seeing him alive or examining the evidence.

Ninth, but not lastly, the ongoing encounters with Jesus today. Millions of Christians throughout history have had a conversion experience after seeing or feeling Him. Millions of Christians have had conversion experiences through an encounter with Jesus’ mother the Virgin Mary or with one of the thousands of Christian Saints throughout history. He is known to be alive today because millions have felt, known and experienced Him, and have beheld and ingested Him in the Eucharist, and have seen or felt the presence of His holy angels ascending and descending during the Solemn Communion of the Mass or during Adoration of the Sacred Host.

This is the good news: that God came to earth, redeemed us and can be experienced by us. Each Sunday morning, or during daily Mass, remember, the good life of a dead man is not celebrated, but do celebrate the resurrection of a living Savior who made us, loves us, and wants to know us. May each Easter be Happy and Blessed for every Christian on Earth, and for every person in the world, past-present-future, and in the eternal life to come.

Christ gave his own body for the life of all men
"I am dying for all men," says the Lord. "I am dying to give them life through myself and to redeem the whole human race through my humanity. In my death, death itself will die and man's fallen nature will rise again with me. I wanted to be like my brothers in every respect, so I became a man like you, a descendant of Abraham." Understanding this well Saint Paul says: As the children of a family share the same flesh and blood, he too shared our human nature so that by his death he could destroy the power of the devil, the prince of death. Death itself and the prince of death could be destroyed only by Christ, who is above all, giving himself up as a ransom for all.
And so, speaking as a spotless victim offering himself for us to God the Father, Christ says in one of the psalms: You desired no sacrifices or offerings, but you have prepared a body for me. You took no pleasure in holocausts or sin offerings. Then I said, "Behold, I am coming." He was crucified for all, desiring his one death for all to give all of us life in him. It was impossible for him to be conquered by death; nor could he who by his very nature is life be subject to corruption. Yet we know that Christ offered his flesh for the life of the world from his own prayer, Holy Father, protect them, and from his words, For their sake I consecrate myself. By saying that he consecrates himself he means that ho offers himself to God as a spotless and sweet-smelling sacrifice. According to the law, anything offered upon the altar was consecrated and considered and considered holy. So Christ gave his own body for the life of all, and makes it the channel through which life flows once more into us. How he does this I will explain to the best of my ability.
When the life-giving Word of God dwelt in human flesh, he changed it into that good thing which is distinctively his, namely, life; and by being wholly united to the flesh in a a way beyond our comprehension, he gave it the life-giving power which he has by his very nature. Therefore, the body of Christ gives life to those who receive it. Its presence in mortal men expels death and drives away corruption because it contains within itself in his entirety the Word who totally abolishes corruption.

(From a commentary on the gospel of John by Saint Cyril of Alexandria )

No One Has Ever Ascended Into Heaven
Except The One Who Descended From Heaven

Today our Lord Jesus Christ ascended into heaven; let our hearts ascend with him. Listen to the words of the Apostle: If you have risen with Christ, set your hearts on the things that are above where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God; seek the things that are above, not the things that are on earth. For just as he remained with us even after his ascension, so we too are already in heaven with him, even though what is promised us has not yet been fulfilled in our bodies.
Christ is now exalted above the heavens, but he still suffers on earth all the pain that we, the members of his body, have to bear. He showed this when he cried out from above: Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me? and when he said: I was hungry and you gave me food.
Why do we on earth not strive to find rest with him in heaven even now, through the faith, hope and love that unites us to him? While in heaven he is also with us; and we while on earth are with him. He is here with us by his divinity, his power and his love. We cannot be in heaven, as he is on earth, by divinity, but in him, we can be there by love.
He did not leave heaven when he came down to us; nor did he withdraw from us when he went up again into heaven. The fact that he was in heaven even while he was on earth is borne out by his own statement: No one has ever ascended into heaven except the one who descended from heaven, the Son of Man, who is in heaven.
These words are explained by our oneness with Christ, for he is our head and we are his body. No one ascended into heaven except Christ because we also are Christ: he is the Son of Man by his union with us, and we by our union with him are the sons of God. So the Apostle says: Just as the human body, which has many members, is a unity, because all the different members make one body, so is it also with Christ. He too has many members, but one body.
Out of compassion for us he descended from heaven, and although he ascended alone, we also ascend, because we are in him by grace. Thus, no one but Christ descended and no one but Christ ascended; not because there is no distinction between the head and the body, but because the body as a unity cannot be separated from the head.

(From a sermon by Saint Augustine, bishop)

In Christ are the first-fruits of the Resurrection:
The Word of God became man, the Son of God became the Son of Man, in order to unite man with himself and make him, by adoption, a son of God. Only by being united to one who is himself immune could we be preserved from corruption and death, and how else could this union have been achieved if he had not first become what we are? How else could what is corruptible and mortal in us have been swallowed up in his incorruptibility and immortality, to enable us to receive adoptive sonship? Therefore, the Son of God, our Lord, the Word of the Father, is also the son of man; he became the son of man by a human birth from Mary, a member of the human race.
The Lord himself has given us a sign here below and in the heights of heaven, a sign that man did not ask for because he never dreamt that such a thing would be possible. A virgin was with a child and she bore a son who is called Emmanuel, which means "God with us." He came down to the earth here below in search of the sheep that was lost, the sheep that was in fact his own creature, and then ascended into the heights of heaven to offer to the Father and entrust to his care the human race that he had found again. The Lord himself became the first-fruits of the resurrection of mankind, and when its time of punishment for disobedience is over the rest of the body, to which the whole human race belongs, will rise from the grave as the head has done. By God's aid it will grow and be strengthened in all its joints and ligaments, each member having its own proper place in the body. There are many rooms in the Father's house because the body has many members.
God bore with man patiently when he fell because he foresaw the victory that would be his through the Word. Weakness allowed strength its full play, and so revealed God's kindness and great power.

(From the treatise Against Heresies by Saint Irenaeus, bishop.)

All human activity is to find its purification in the Paschal mystery
Holy Scripture, with which the experience of the ages is in agreement, teaches the human family that human progress, though it is a great blessing for man, brings with it a great temptation. When the scale of values is disturbed and evil becomes mixed with good, individuals and groups consider only their own interests, not those of others.
The result is that the world is not yet a home of true brotherhood, while the increased power of mankind already threatens to destroy the human race itself.
If it is asked how this unhappy state of affairs can be set right, Christians state their belief that all human activity, in daily jeopardy through pride and inordinate self-love, is to find its purification and its perfection in the cross and resurrection of Christ.
Man, redeemed by Christ and made a new creation in the Holy Spirit, can and must love the very things created by God. For he receives them from God, and sees and reveres them as coming from the hand of God, As he gives thanks for them to his Benefactor, and uses and enjoys them in a spirit of poverty and freedom, he enters into true possession of the world, as one having nothing and possessing all things. For all things are yours, and you are Christ's, and Christ is God's.
The Word of God, through whom all things were made, himself became man and lived in the world of men. As perfect man he has entered into the history of the world, taking it up into himself and bringing it into unity as its head. He reveals to us that God is love, and at the same time teaches us that the fundamental law of human perfection, and therefore of the transformation of the world, is the new commandment of love. He assures those who have faith in God's love that the way of love is open to all men, and that the effort to restore universal brotherhood is not in vain. At the same time he warns us that this love is not to be sought after only in great things but also, and above all, in the ordinary circumstances of life.
He suffered death for us all, sinners as we are, and by his example he teaches us that we also have to carry that cross which the flesh and the world lay on the shoulders of those who strive for peace and justice.
Constituted as the Lord by his resurrection, Christ, to whom all power in heaven and on earth has been given, is still at work in the hearts of men through the power of his Spirit. Not only does he awaken in them a longing for the world to come, but by that very fact he also inspires, purifies and strengthens those generous desires by which the human family seeks to make its own life more human and to achieve the same goal for the whole world.
The gifts of the Spirit are manifold. He calls some to bear open witness to the longing for a dwelling place in heaven, and to keep this fresh in the minds of all mankind; he calls others to dedicate themselves to the service of men here on earth, preparing by this ministry the material for the kingdom of heaven.
Yet he makes all free, so that, by denying their love of self and taking up all earth's resources into the life of man, all may reach out to the future, when humanity itself will become an offering acceptable to God.

(Vatican II: "Gaudium et Spes" on the Church in the modern world)

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Created: 4/22/2000 - - - Modified: 3/22/2006