He is risen!

More than ever, as spring warms the earth while we’re stuck inside because of the coronavirus, we need to find joy in the central fact of human history: 

The life and resurrection of Jesus Christ, which we especially celebrate on Easter Sunday. 

When God came to earth in human form, He promised to make us “new creatures.” That meant restoring our relationship with Him as well as regenerating our minds. It’s no secret that the most successful transitions from various addictions, for example, come through a faith experience.

As God Incarnate, Jesus can do literally anything, including rejuvenating our God-given mind, body and souls. 

“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” (Romans 12:2) 

This is the wonderful secret that the secular world aggressively tries to suppress. In fact, many go out of their way to insist that God is a manmade concept and that Jesus was either merely a man or never existed. Or, if He did, He can be cast in whatever image suits us.

“Our culture has lost its biblical foundation, and I believe the fault lies at the doorstep of the church,” Art Ally said in a Q & A in his book Invested with Purpose. “We have been co-opted by the world. As a result, we have no anchor, no plumb line. Francis Schaeffer tried to warn us: 

‘We use terms like “God” or “Jesus” that have no content. We no longer mean the God and Jesus of the Bible but a God and Jesus that we have redefined into our own image.’” 

This misguided wish is born out of a personal fear of having to change one’s ways if what the Bible says is true. It’s also a result of profound ignorance; Jesus clearly existed, and his resurrection is one of the most well documented events in antiquity. 

Even the Skeptics Cannot Deny Historical Reality 

Dr. Jerry Newcomb of D. James Kennedy Ministries once interviewed a skeptical scholar, John Dominic Crossan, who was part of the Jesus Seminar. That ultraliberal group issued rulings about which statements from Jesus in the New Testament they thought were authentic. They “voted” with colored beads, rejecting many passages attributed to Jesus. But as to His very existence, they had little doubt. 

“We do know that Jesus existed from both Tacitus, at the beginning of the second century, and Josephus at the end of the first century,’ Dr. Crossan said. 

Besides the eyewitness accounts in the New Testament, Jesus is referenced in at least 20 different non-Biblical sources. In his book “The Historical Jesus,” David Habermas lists first- and second-century sources that attest to various aspects of Jesus’ life. In addition to Tacitus and Josephus, they include Thallus, Phlegon, Pliny the Younger, Suetonius, Emperor Trajan, Emperor Hadrian, the Talmud, Lucian, Mar Bar-Serapion, and others. 

The best evidence for the power of the Gospel of Jesus Christ is His life-transforming effect upon believers. 

From the Apostle Paul, who vilely persecuted Christians before being confronted by Jesus on the road to Damascus, to modern-day skeptics who become believers, the redemptive power of conversion is unmistakable. 

It’s not for nothing that Jesus Himself described it as being “born again.” For some, this acceptance of the presence of a loving God through a personal savior comes through a gradual process; for others, it is a born-again “moment” that they will never forget. 

Either way, lives are changed and hope is restored. It’s why Easter is the most important holiday in the Christian tradition. 

Honoring God in All Things 

At Timothy Plan, we acknowledge that God owns all things, including anything we do with the talents He gave us and the products of our labor. As Art Ally likes to say, “Jesus is the Chairman of the Board.” 

This means striving to direct our actions to coincide with our beliefs every way we can, which includes how we invest our money. Does it honor God or not? 

“Imagine an investment portfolio that aligns your investments with Kingdom purposes,” writes Mark Minnella in his book The Wall Street Awakening: The Heart and Mind of Investing with Biblical Integrity. 

“Imagine, because of the transformation of your mind, the peace, joy, freedom, and contentment that you could experience once you are no longer controlled by financial fears of this world but are living according to God’s eternal plan for your life.” 

Just as the seasons go round, with winter now giving way to spring, markets rise and markets fall – and rise again. 

And, no matter what happens with the coronavirus and economic crises, we can turn to the One through Whom all things were created. 

That’s always beneficial – in good times as well as hard times. 

From Art Ally and the staff at Timothy Plan: Have a blessed Easter.

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