Being a collector of trivia I like to dig into texts for lesser-known ways of looking at generally a commonly-known subjects and bring these little jewels out to the light of day. The Easter story is like that – the story of “He is not here”, “Why do you look for the living among the dead?” and the like is commonly known – but how many people know what He did in between the time He died and when He rose again and fulfilled the sign of Jonah?
Earlier in His life Christ told people what was happening:
Now is the judgment of this world; now will the ruler of this world be cast out. John 12:31
The task Christ came to accomplish was to face down and defeat death and cast out the ruler of this world. Part of this work took place during His time in the tomb:
Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.
See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ. For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily, and you have been filled in him, who is the head of all rule and authority. In him also you were circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God, who raised him from the dead. And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross.
When Christ was nailed to the cross, all our sins were nailed to it as well. That’s something to be extremely thankful for!
It’s also when Christ got “down to business” –
He disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in him. Colossians 2:6-15
Christ completely dominated all that opposed Him such that their shame and disgrace will be openly known for all time!
Though these powers have been defeated, they can still make mischief for a little while. 1 Corinthians 15:20-28 tells us their days are numbered and they will be completely disarmed and subjected to Christ when the Father subjects all things except Himself to Christ’s authority:
But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive. But each in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, then at his coming those who belong to Christ. Then comes the end, when he delivers the kingdom to God the Father after destroying every rule and every authority and power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death. For “God has put all things in subjection under his feet.” But when it says, “all things are put in subjection,” it is plain that he is excepted who put all things in subjection under him. When all things are subjected to him, then the Son himself will also be subjected to him who put all things in subjection under him, that God may be all in all.
So the next time you think of Easter, think of how the Living God descended to the depths of hell, obliterated Satan and his power, and then rose again to eternal glory, laud and honor.
All because He loves YOU.
The eternal call of “Christ is risen” continues to be met with the response of “He is risen indeed, hallelujah!” Truly the maker and redeemer of all creation is an awesome God!
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