William Sangster was a stalwart, Bible-believing minister “who helped guide Londoners through the horrors of the bombings of London in World War II. Sangster developed a disease that progressively paralyzed his body, and eventually his vocal chords. On the Easter morning just before he died, he managed to scribble a short note to his daughter. The note read: “How terrible to wake up on Easter and have no voice to shout, ‘He is Risen!’ However, it is far worse to have a voice and not want to shout, ‘He is Risen!’” (Paul Goodrich, “He Is Risen!” accessed February 25, 2017, http://www.fumcwf.org/he-is-risen/.)
We rejoice in Christ’s resurrection and the life we have in Him. However, it is troubling to find that there are teachings out there that say that all you need to believe to be saved is that Christ died for your sins. Some say that faith in Christ’s resurrection isn’t necessary to be saved because our salvation is based solely on Christ’s payment for our sins at the Cross, and they’ll intentionally leave out the Resurrection. However, this is not Pauline. The gospel of the grace of God includes the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. Paul stresses in his letters the importance of believing that Christ is risen from the dead. Note the following verses:
“And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness…But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on Him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead” (Rom. 4:22,24).
“That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved” (Rom. 10:9).
“For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures; And that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures (1 Cor. 15:3,4).
“And that He died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto Him which died for them, and rose again” (2 Cor. 5:15).
“For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with Him” (1 Thes. 4:14).
Unbelievers must trust that Christ is risen in order to be saved, so believers need to stress Christ’s death and resurrection when they share the gospel of grace. When Paul writes about our spiritual baptism with Christ, we are not only identified with His death, but also His burial and resurrection (Rom. 6:3,4). According to Colossians 2:10, we “are complete in Him,” because we have been identified with Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection (Col. 2:11,12) the moment we believed in His death, burial, and resurrection.
Christ died for our sins and… He rose again the third day. Don’t leave out the resurrection! It’s crucial to our faith and salvation. We have God’s Word on it. As Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 15:17, “If Christ be not raised, your faith is vain [empty]; ye are yet in your sins.” But because “Christ is risen from the dead,” those “in Christ shall all be made alive” (1 Cor. 15:20,22). That should cause us to want to shout for joy!
“Jesus our Lord…was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification” (Rom. 4:24,25).
To the Reader:
Some of our Two Minutes articles were written many years ago by Pastor C. R. Stam for publication in newspapers. When many of these articles were later compiled in book form, Pastor Stam wrote this word of explanation in the Preface:
"It should be borne in mind that the newspaper column, Two Minutes With the Bible, has now been published for many years, so that local, national and international events are discussed as if they occurred only recently. Rather than rewrite or date such articles, we have left them just as they were when first published. This, we felt, would add to the interest, especially since our readers understand that they first appeared as newspaper articles."
To this we would add that the same is true for the articles written by others that we continue to add, on a regular basis, to the Two Minutes library. We hope that you'll agree that while some of the references in these articles are dated, the spiritual truths taught therein are timeless.