This I believe

Bishop Gary E. Mueller

Bishop Gary E. Mueller

By Bishop Gary E. Mueller

We will celebrate Easter on Sunday, April 5. It’s a day of great joy. But it’s also a day that means different things to different Christians.

There are some Christians who just can’t accept the fact that Jesus was physically resurrected from the dead. But they’re not ready to give up on resurrection, so they try to “explain” Jesus’ resurrection in ways that make sense to them using primarily psychological or symbolic language.

Other Christians focus on Jesus’ resurrection as an antidote to death. Jesus conquered death after his amazing love led him to die on our behalf. His resurrection means that we will experience eternal life and live with God forever when we die.

Still other Christians believe that Jesus’ resurrection is not primarily about death, but about life. This certainly includes life in the future that is lived in God’s eternal never-ending embrace—but it also includes resurrection life that begins right now and changes everything about everything.

So what do I believe?

I believe Jesus was physically resurrected from the dead. He was not, however, merely the same as he was before; he literally became a new creation. I believe Jesus’ resurrection overflows with rich spiritual, psychological and emotional meaning that speaks to our hearts, minds and lives in a multitude of ways so we can live more faithfully and fully every single day. I believe Jesus’ resurrection gives us the eternal hope that nothing that happens in life or in death ever can separate us from God’s love in Christ. And I believe Jesus’ resurrection enables us to experience the beginning of eternal life right now through Jesus’ unconditional love that accepts us just the way we are, transformational love so powerful he is unwilling to leave us just the way we are and invitational love that invites us into the fullness of God’s eternal life.

But when all is said and done, I believe there is one thing about Jesus’ resurrection that is absolutely essential. If we believe Jesus’ resurrection actually occurred, it must be the single most important thing in our lives. And that means it must shape everything we believe, strive for and do.

This I believe.