Raised as Promised
by Donald T. Williams
"Et resurrexit tertia die secundum Scripturam"; "And he was raised the third day according to the Scriptures."—The Nicene Creed
When we say that Christ was raised "according to the Scriptures," of course we think that they accurately record the event, and first accurately predicted it. We may think of the doctrine of inspiration and be glad for it, and rightly so. But there is more to it than that. It also speaks of the kind of God we have and the kind of relationship we have with him. He speaks to us, and this speaking establishes a relationship with us. And that speaking involves conveying information (accurate and trustworthy information, too), but there is yet more to it than that.
This is a God who makes promises and keeps them. He promised that the Seed of the Woman would crush the Serpent's head. He promised that of Abraham he would make a nation that would bless every family on earth. He promised that a Messiah would come from David in that nation and be born in Bethlehem. He promised that the Messiah would be a Suffering Servant who would bear his people's sins. He promised that he would be handed over to the Gentiles and killed and rise again on the third day. He made these promises to us, and he kept them. That introduces a personal level to his relating to us and a level of trust we can have in him that no other people has with its god. For he was raised the third day according to the Scriptures.
Donald T. Williams Ph.D., is R. A. Forrest Scholar at Toccoa Falls College. He is the author of eleven books, most recently Deeper Magic: The Theology Behind the Writings of C. S. Lewis (Square Halo Books, 2016) and An Encouraging Thought: The Christian Worldview in the Writings of J. R. R. Tolkien (Christian Publishing House, 2018). He is a member of University Church, an interdenominational house church in Athens, Georgia.