The Death and Resurrection of Christ

Christ alone could pass through death, and exhaust its strength, when in it, as shedding the blood of the everlasting covenant; and He alone could rise again from death, in the reality of the power of the life that was in Him, "for in Him was life." But it was proper divine power by which this was done. God raised Christ from the dead, testimony of His full acceptance of His work. Christ, being God, could say: "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up"; nor was it possible that He could be holden of death. But it is not by any force of spiritual life, as man, that He raised Himself; though we know, as He laid it down of Himself, so He took it again, and this by commandment received of the Father - so that in this we cannot separate the deity and humanity - I speak of the act, not of His Person. He had power to take it again, but it was still obedience; we feel at every step no one knows the Son but the Father. He has opened this way; He has converted death into a power that destroys the flesh which shackles us, and a deliverance from that in us which gives advantage to the enemy with whom we are to fight, being thenceforward brought into Canaan. Therefore the apostle says, "All things are yours, whether life or death." Now, every true Christian is dead and risen in Christ; the knowing and realising it is another thing. But the Word of God sets Christian privilege before us according to its real power in Christ. J. N. Darby.