THE BIBLE CAUSES US TO BELIEVE IN RESURRECTION
I am one who preaches the cross. Among us, many co-workers also preach the cross. Today we are all those who believe in the cross. We all believe that His death has saved us. He did not die for Himself. Rather, He died to redeem us. But let me ask you a question. Can you find one place in the entire Bible that says that we should believe that the Lord Jesus has died for us? Where in the entire New Testament does it say that we should believe in the Lord’s death for us? There is no such place. This is most peculiar. There is not a single verse in the entire New Testament that tells us that we should believe in the Lord’s death for us. Do not misunderstand and think that I despise the work of the cross. I am very much for the work of the cross. But one must pay attention to the word of the Bible. There is not a single place in the New Testament that says that we should believe in the Lord Jesus’ dying for us. There are countless places in the Bible that tell us that Jesus died for us and for our sins. But there is not one place that tells us to take His death as the object of our faith. The Gospel of John tells us that we have to believe (3:15-16, 18, 36). But it does not speak about believing in the cross. It only speaks of believing in the Lord.
There is another thing that is equally peculiar. The New Testament tells us to believe that God has raised Jesus from the dead. The Bible does not say that the cross or the death of the Lord Jesus is the object of our faith. Rather, it says that resurrection is the object of our faith. I believe we all know the verse in Romans 10:9, "That if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved." Why does the Bible not ask us to believe in the cross of the Lord, but asks us to believe in His resurrection? Why does the Bible never ask us to believe in the cross of the Lord Jesus, but ask us to believe that God has raised Him from the dead? Brothers, we must consider this a little. This is very crucial. If it were up to our reading of the Bible, we would think that the cross is the most important thing, and that there should be at least one word that says that we should believe in the Lord’s death on the cross. But there is not a single word about this. Why is this the case? One brother may answer that if Christ has not resurrected, our faith is in vain. It is true that twice in 1 Corinthians 15 it says that if Christ has not been raised, then our faith is vain (vv. 14, 17). But this word does not help us to solve the problem. On the contrary, it makes our problem all the more difficult. If there is no resurrection, our faith is in vain. Hence, resurrection is something that we should believe in. We know that redemption is a matter between God and the Lord Jesus. It is not God’s demand on man. Redemption is not something that the Lord has done to satisfy man’s heart. It is the Lord Jesus’ satisfaction of God’s demand of holiness, righteousness, and glory. The Lord’s death and the redemptive work that He accomplished are transactions that went on between God and the Lord Jesus. It is not something that is sounded out as the object of our faith. The basis of our faith is God’s raising of Jesus from among the dead.
(Gospel of God, The (2 volume set), Chapter 7, by Watchman Nee)