Skip to main content
Center for Action and Contemplation

Christ Is Risen

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Jesus and Christ

Christ Is Risen
Sunday, February 10, 2019

I am making the whole of creation new. . . . It will come true. . . . It is already done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. —Revelation 21:5-6

Who is speaking here at the very end of the Bible? Is this Jesus of Nazareth or Someone Else? Whoever is talking is offering an entire and optimistic arc to all of history. This is much more than a mere “religious” message; it is also a historical and cosmic one. It declares a definite trajectory where there is a coherence between the beginning and the ending of all things. It offers humanity hope and vision. History appears to have a direction and a purpose; it is not just a series of isolated events.

This is the Universal Christ speaking. Jesus of Nazareth, the humble carpenter, did not talk this way. It was Christ who “rose from the dead.” Resurrection is hardly a leap of faith once you realize that the Christ never died—or can die—because the Christ is the eternal mystery of matter and Spirit as one. Jesus willingly died—and Christ arose—yes, still Jesus, but now including and revealing everything else in its full purpose and glory. (Read Colossians 1:15-20 so you know this is not just my idea.)

When these verses in Revelation were written, sixty to seventy years had passed since Jesus’ human body “ascended into heaven.” The author is describing a fully available presence that defines, liberates, and sets a goal and direction for life. Largely following Paul, who wrote in the 50s CE, Revelation calls this seemingly new and available presence a mystery, “both Lord and Christ” (Acts 2:36) more than just “Jesus.”

The Risen Jesus is the divine presence beyond any confines of space and time. The Eternal Christ appeared in a personal form that humans came to know and love as “Jesus.” The Resurrection is not so much a miracle as it is an apparition of what has always been true and will always be true.

Such divine presence had always been there, as we know from the experiences of “Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob” (Luke 20:37-38). But through Jesus, this eternal presence had a precise, concrete, and personal referent. In Jesus Christ, vague belief and spiritual intuition became specific—with a “face” that we could “see, hear, and touch” (1 John 1:1).

Adapted from Richard Rohr, Eager to Love: The Alternative Way of Francis of Assisi (Franciscan Media: 2014), 209-210, 289-290.

Image credit: Black Jesus Welcomes (Christ the Redeemer, Cristo Redentor) (detail). Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Inspiration for this week’s banner image: Jesus is a map for the time-bound and personal level of life; Christ is the blueprint for all time and space and life itself. —Richard Rohr
Navigate by Date

This year’s theme

The Prophetic Path

It can be easier to turn away from suffering than face it with an open heart. That’s why our 2023 Daily Meditations theme, The Prophetic Path, empowers us to not avoid or fear the pain of the world, but turn toward it with compassion.

The archives

Explore the Daily Meditations

Explore past meditations and annual themes by browsing the Daily Meditations archive. Explore by topic or use the search bar to find wisdom from specific teachers.

Join our email community

Sign-up to receive the Daily Meditations, featuring reflections on the wisdom and practices of the Christian contemplative tradition.

Hidden Fields

Find out about upcoming courses, registration dates, and new online courses.
Our theme this year is Nothing Stands Alone. What could happen if we embraced the idea of God as relationship—with ourselves, each other, and the world? Meditations are emailed every day of the week, including the Weekly Summary on Saturday. Each week builds on previous topics, but you can join at any time.
In a world of fault lines and fractures, how do we expand our sense of self to include love, healing, and forgiveness—not just for ourselves or those like us, but for all? This monthly email features wisdom and stories from the emerging Christian contemplative movement. Join spiritual seekers from around the world and discover your place in the Great Story Line connecting us all in the One Great Life. Conspirare. Breathe with us.