The Freedom of the Resurrection

Easter people are those who live in the freedom of the resurrection.

The resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead is an event of freedom for us because it’s the assurance that death does not have the last word in the world. God does.

Yes, we live in an unjust world. Yes, there is suffering and death – pick a story from today’s newspaper. But a living faith in the reality of God’s victory over death means we don’t have to live in captivity to the powers of death in the world. Life can take a different shape.

Although we live in a world of suffering and death we’re freed from the power of death and freed for work and witness that leads to life. In other words, Christian freedom is not freedom from the world; it’s freedom for the world.

“I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly” (Jn. 10:10b). What does “abundant life” look like to you? John 21, the text I preached on last Sunday, describes the third post-resurrection appearance of Jesus to the disciples. Abundance here is quite concrete. It’s a huge net full of fish, a meal together and an invitation that invites discernment in community: “….follow me.”

“Follow me” may be rather vague, and perhaps it is. But in light of the gospel stories and the reality of the cross and the empty tomb, we can be sure that “follow me” points us in certain directions: toward the wider world, toward the neighbor, toward those who suffer, toward community, and of course, toward God.