In my teen years, I remember reading about a prominent theological movement called the “God is Dead Movement.” Theologians weren't suggesting the physical death of God, they were proclaiming that God was no longer central to our understanding of the universe. The question was asked, “What are the possibilities for living if God doesn’t exist?” In a very real sense, many people in our day have decided that God is dead. In fact, many people who go to church every Sunday believe that God is dead and that what they are attending amounts to nothing more than a memorial service or a social gathering. Today, let’s consider what the Bible has to say about this idea by reading two passages. The first is from the Book of Acts when Jewish leaders and chief priests spoke against Paul:
Rather they had certain points of dispute with him about their own religion and about a certain Jesus, who was dead, but whom Paul asserted to be alive. (Acts 25:19)
And the second passage, from the book of Psalms:
The LORD lives! Blessed be my Rock! Let the God of my salvation be exalted! (Psalm 18:46)
In the first passage, we heard the message Paul was preaching. He was stirring up the people by telling everyone that Jesus was alive. Earlier in the book of Acts, in 4:33, we learn that the apostles “with great power, gave witness to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus.” And their message: God is alive! They weren’t trying to sign people up for a new religion—they were proclaiming the controversial message that Jesus died but was now alive. In our second passage from Psalm 18, King David is exultant: “The LORD lives! Blessed be my Rock! Let the God of my salvation be exalted!” If God is alive, you and I must do something in response. The first thing we can do is to praise Him! Jesus Christ is alive today and He is at work. He is speaking to a fallen world, calling us to repentance and faith. He is speaking to His people about going to the lost, the poor, people who need comfort and healing. He is changing lives, today and every day, all day and all night. Nearly 150 years ago the philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche suggested that God was dead. Guess what? It’s Nietzsche who is dead! That theological movement in the ‘60s asserted that God is dead, but that movement is also dead, as are most of the theologians who espoused it.
But here’s Someone who isn’t dead: Jesus Christ. He’s alive! And that's the very best Good News!