Well, we just got back from the mausoleum in Portland where we buried my great grandpa; I had the honor of praying before he was encrypted. The theme of my prayer of course was the resurrection, and the hope that this engenders for all those who love Jesus. The reality of the moment was quite tangible as I stood next to great grandpa’s casket, and all the tombs of those who had already passed on. For some reason the passage of Scripture that hit me at that moment was:
And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent; 52 and the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose, 53 and came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many. — Matthew 27: 51-53
of course this was the event which took place after Jesus’s resurrection and foreshadows the ultimate resurrection which we all will experience as result of placing our trust in Jesus Christ. The thought that great grandpa’s body will rise from that tomb on that great day is overwhelming. What a great hope! Even greater is to realize that great grandpa is experiencing the first fruits of the resurrection even now; he indeed, “… is absent from the body, but present with the Lord …” — although he is longing to be clothed with his glorified body (see second Corinthians 5: 1 ff).
One more poignant thought that hit me today was how much sense Christianity actually makes abductively or comparatively. In other words Christianity is so natural, in the supernatural sense of that word. To clarify, what I mean is that Christianity makes sense in light of the reality of life. We’re born, we live, we die. Christianity answers for what, when, who, why were born, live, and die. I can’t think of any other belief system that fundamentally answers all of these questions, without struggling. The resurrection of Jesus Christ provides the purpose and anticipation for all of life. The resurrection provides objective telos for all of reality as it re-creates fallen-ness towards its ultimate point in the eschaton. This was the hope I was contemplating today as we buried my great grandpa … The Great Hope That Will Never Disappoint!