The Resurrection of Jesus Christ

Readers of this blog or of my book will have noticed that I question why the resurrection of Jesus does not get more attention in our theology.  For much of Christianity, the resurrection of Jesus Christ is an “epilogue to the Gospel, an addendum to the scheme of salvation.  . .” [1]  That is except for Easter Sunday when it receives attention for just one day.  Why?  The Bible teaches that Christ’s resurrection is necessary for our salvation (Romans10:5-11, 1 Peter 3:21-22) but we seem to have delegated it to a minor event.

Others have asked this question as well.  James Fowler back in 2001 issued a call for a resurrection theology but I have not seen an answer to his call.  H. A Williams wrote True Resurrection in which he states that for most of us, Christ’s resurrection is meaningless because it does not have an impact on our lives. [2]  James S. Stewart asks similar questions.  He states the apostolic teaching of the resurrection is that it demonstrates that a power exists and is in action that is stronger than the evil that crucified Jesus. [3]   What the Christian community has failed to understand is that the power of the resurrection is available to us and as a result we have failed to use that power.  Stewart asks:  “Why is there such a difference between the promise and the actuality as we know it in our lives and see it in the church and in the world around?” [4]

Part of the answer is that we have reduced Christianity to a belief system.  All we need to do to be saved is to believe in Jesus and his death for our sins.  But is that what the Bible teaches?  Stewart maintains that Christianity is “a decisive relationship to a living Person”  [5], the resurrected Jesus.  What Christianity needs is to recover that decisive relationship and we recover it by meditation on the Gospel and by following the teachings of Jesus. [6]  We recover it by living the new life God has planned for us.


[1]   James S. Stewart, A Faith to Proclaim, Vancouver, British Columbia:  Regent College Publishing, 1953. p.105.

[2]   H. A. Williams, True Resurrection, Springfield, IL:  Templegate Publishers, 1972, pp. 3-5.

[3]   Stewart, p. 122.

[4]   Stewart, pp. 137-138.

[5]   Stewart, p. 146.

[6]   Stewart, pp. 159-160.

This entry was posted in Salvation. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *