“I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies.” John 11:25, the Bible
In 2020/21, we’ve been confronted with our own mortality, perhaps like never before in our lifetimes. Death has been headline news.
We have responded with a typical British resolve and defiance – follow the rules, get the vaccine and we’ll get through this. In the face of death, we have stood boldly, resting all our hope in ourselves, our own ingenuity and British bulldoggedness.
This was personified best perhaps, in the late Sir Captain Tom Moore who sadly died with COVID-19 earlier this year. A BBC obituary said this,
“At times of crisis, a nation needs hope and heroes. Sometimes, they’re found in unlikely places – and when Britain first locked down against the coronavirus pandemic, it discovered Captain Sir Tom Moore.” 1
The Prime Minister said he “embodied the triumph of the human spirit” and was “a beacon of hope for the world.” This made his passing all the more saddening. Our “hero” in the face of COVID was snuffed out by it. He could not triumph over the one foe we all must face: death itself.
The likes of Sir Captain Moore, as well as health care workers, may rightly be considered heroic – but, in the end, no one can defeat death. Except one.
The Bible tells us death exists because humanity has turned against the one who gives life – God. Death is the “wages of sin” (Romans 6:23), what we are owed for our wrongdoing.
The “gift of God” is life through his Son, Jesus Christ. Jesus lived a perfect, sinless life. Still, he died – not because he deserved it, but to take our place and pay the price for our sin.
Then three days later he came back to life: the first Easter. He had triumphed over death itself! This event sparked a worldwide movement, bringing new life and true hope to millions of people, even today. Jesus is the true hero, the real champion, who overcame death for us and offers life to any who trust and follow him.
As we emerge from the restrictions of lockdown, it may feel as if we are stepping into new life. I want to offer you a new kind of life unlike anything else you can imagine: a life that cannot be threatened by lockdowns or diseases or even death itself.
This is life in the Captain of our Salvation, Jesus Christ. I honour Sir Captain Tom Moore, but I trust in Jesus. Have you discovered him yet?
Dan is the pastor at ChristChurch Tilehurst. He is married to Emma and has three children: Thea, Jesse & Phoebe.