When the Saints Go Marching…

This past Sunday was All Saints Sunday. It follows All Saints Day which is the first day of November every year. All Saints Day is a feast in the Church where we recognize all those who have passed on and now rest in the Lord. It is not just a day of remembrance, it is also a day of hope. For me, All Saints Day is a testimony that we receive from God and His disciples, that we worship and believe in a God who creates, sustains, and renews life.

Jesus tells us this in Luke 20, “He (God) isn’t the God of the dead but of the living. To Him they are all alive.” What an amazing promise God gives us. He is not the God of the dead but the living. This promise was given with Jesus as the fulfillment when after three days of lying in the grave Jesus was risen. He was not resuscitated or reincarnated, NO! Jesus was resurrected.

The resurrection goes against all that human knowledge understands. The resurrection stands outside of the natural and the supernatural. It is completely unique in character. There is nothing that we can compare the resurrection too. It is a reality that is not borrowed from any source in human history. The resurrection was a completely new creation given to us from God.  The resurrection was not just a nice story or a lie that Christians want to tell ourselves. When Jesus was resurrected He was the same, yet drastically different. The resurrection was something that is so unique in our history that we cannot explain it or describe it, yet we believe in it. As 1 Corinthians 15 states, “It’s necessary for this rotting body to be clothed with what can’t decay, and for the body that is dying to be clothed in what can’t die. And when the rotting body has been clothed in what can’t decay, and the dying body has been clothed in what can’t die, then this statement  in scripture will happen: Death has been swallowed up by a victory. Where is your victory, Death? (Death’s sting is sin and the power of sin is the Law.) Thanks be to God, who gives us this victory through our Lord Jesus Christ!”

For God to be the God of the living, He had to deal with death. Jesus is the answer and correction of death. For in Christ sin is defeated and our bodies and spirits are clothed in the imperishability of God’s glory. This is how God has chosen to create, sustain and renew life. Not just humanities life, but also all creation which is being renewed as well. Nothing, outside of creation itself, has had such cosmic effects. This is the hope, faith, and truth that we as believers in Christ spread through our actions and words.

Which brings us to All Saints Day. We celebrate and remember the saints of the past on this day. (By the way, all who believe in Jesus Christ as their savior are saints.) However, we do not remember them as if they are gone. We remember their lives as a testimony that brought us the faith and recognize that they are not gone, but continue to LIVE. They live with Christ who is ALIVE. They believed and put their faith in a LIVING GOD. They share in His glory and are clothed with righteousness.

We do share one thing with the Saints. Both us and the saints are still waiting. We wait for the day when Christ will return. When evil will be defeated once and for all. We wait for the trumpet to sound and the saints will rise and we will all be changed for we will all experience the resurrection. We wait for heaven and earth to be married and join in sweet fellowship and the Kingdom of God to be our only home. Our spirits wait to join our physical bodies and we experience what Jesus experienced when He rose on the third day. We all wait for the Day of the Lord when all people and nations will bow and proclaim Jesus as Lord. We wait for that day when all the saints will come marching in to the City of God that is being prepared for all who have put their faith, hope, and love in the Lord our God. Even though the saints who have passed and rest in the Lord they know that the existence they share at this moment is not the final answer, the resurrected life is.

This is why All Saints Day/Sunday is important. We as the Church need to receive this testimony from the saints because let’s face it, this life can be hard. We face death, pain and suffering each day. But the saints teach us this, “We work and struggle for this: ‘Our hope is set on the living God, who is the savior of all people, especially those who believe.'” (1 Timothy 4) On All Saints Day/Sunday we receive and remember the great witness that the Lord has given to us through His Faithful. What better message could we receive from those who have passed from this age and await the next.

I hope that you will receive and believe in the Good News that there is a LIVING GOD. I hope and believe and celebrate the truth that Jesus has conquered death for all things. This is a message we need today. This is a reality that we need to live in. This is testimony from the Saints who have ran the race and fought the good fight…

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