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An Ancient Message "Resurrected"

Gerd Lüdemann

I can no longer relate Easter directly to the Bible and the creed. Since the resurrection of Jesus was not an historical event, we cannot expect him to come again, nor to provide us with a ticket to endless bliss. For me, resurrection has to do with this present life, which I liken to a small raft afloat on a vast, dark ocean. An icy wind blows, and we on the raft are united only by the bond of the death that will come to all of us. Nor can we expect any compassion from the impersonal universe that surrounds us. But by coming to terms with the reality of such terrors in humility, wisdom, and love, I believe we can discover the threshold of a new life. From now on I am no longer cowed by the notion that death is a punishment for my sin, nor do I hope for immortality. Instead, I accept my perishability, and that gives rise to a new Easter vision. Now impervious to the undertow of panic, I join with all humanity in the daily task of living in the light of love - a commitment by which together we can make life stronger than death. Nor do I consider this a new idea. Indeed, it reflects the teaching of Jesus before Christianity distorted his message.


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