HAPPY RESURRECTION DAY!
JESUS CHRIST AROSE FROM THE DEAD!
AND JESUS CHRIST IS ALIVE BOTH NOW AND FOREVERMORE!
There have been numerous ways the grand truth of Jesus’ resurrection has been stated and explained. In the Bible, the prophets foretold it, as did Jesus Himself. The Gospel narratives give historical accounts of the event and eyewitnesses of Jesus alive again, and the Gospels also, together with the New Testament Epistles, explain what the resurrection means regarding salvation. Further, for almost two millennia, Christian preachers and teachers have explained it to millions around the world, and musicians have commemorated the event in song.
A unique celebration of Jesus’ resurrection is the following poem, “The Death of Death,” that I ran across while in seminary about 30 years ago. The poem is anonymous as far as I have been able to determine, but if anyone knows who wrote it please notify me and I will give credit where credit is due.
HE IS RISEN INDEED!
THE DEATH OF DEATH
Father Time met pale King Death sitting by a tomb.
“Hello, O Friend, I guess you’re here to seal somebody’s doom.”
“You might say that,” sly Death replied, a smile lit up his face.
“Herein lies that Jesus man who said He’d save the race.
“And you, O Time, why did you stop? Don’t you have other things to do?”
“Well,” said Time, “I just come each day to draw the vale and let the morning through.
But you, O Death, why do you watch just one grave with all your vast domain?
Seems like you’d be out ramblin’ around an smitin’ folks with pain!”
“Well,” sneered Death, “This one’s special—Jesus challenged me they say.
He claimed He would lie here just three days then stand and walk away.
Now I’m the conqueror you know; they don’t talk down to me.
When I come in to knock ‘em down, it’s for eternity.”
“I can sure testify to that,” responded Father Time.
“I haven’t seen one escape your grasp since you’ve been in your prime.
But I have other things to do so I must be on my way.
I’ll see you when I come back again to start another day.”
So stately Time went up the hill to bid the sun to rise,
And left Death standing by the tomb looking strong and wise.
The next day Time passed by again, “And how are things” he queried.
“Rather quiet,” Death replied, “I’m beginning to get weary.
I won’t be here when you come by again about this time tomorrow.
Since Jesus can’t do what He claimed, I’ll go spread some grief and sorrow.”
The next day Father Time was quite surprised when he came back to see
Old Death a quivering on the ground in frightful agony.
His eyes were set, his throat was marked, his clothes in disarray.
It wasn’t difficult to see that Death had had his day.
“What happened, Death?” asked Father Time. “What makes you look so bad?
I’ve never seen you shake this way or look so scared and sad.”
Death pulled himself upon a rock, looking sick and humble.
He hung his head and wrung his hands, and Time could hear him mumble.
“I was sitting there on that tomb before the dawn, and I was about to take my leave.
When all at once an angel grabbed that stone and gave a mighty heave.
That massive stone jumped off the door and skipped on down the hill.
Then everything grew dark and quiet, as if the earth stood still.
Then I saw Jesus—He was standing at the entrance, and He didn’t move or speak.
He just looked at me and all at once I felt so tired and weak.
He came and got a hold of me and threw me to the ground.
He put His foot here on my neck, and He took my keys and crown.
Jesus said, ‘The plan’s all finished now; redemption’s work is done.’
And two angels came and talked to Him; they glistened like the sun.
And as they passed the garden gate, I heard Him say to them.
‘I now have set the captives free and given gifts to men.’”
Time and Death met once again over there by Saint Peter’s gate.
“And how are you?” asked Father Time. “I’ve been wondering about your fate.”
Old Death was quiet for a moment and didn’t say a word.
But when he finally spoke to Time, he was gentle as a bird.
“I’m just a lowly servant now,” said Death, “there’s very little time to roam.
I just push open this big gate and help the saints go home.”