In the Gospel of John there are seven “I AM” sayings, as well as seven “signs,” both of which are to point to and support claims of Christ’s divinity. In my opinion, as well as many others, there are in fact eight signs, not seven. I am going to suggest that the resurrection of Christ is, in fact, a sign as it demonstrates the deity of Christ. So, here is the question:
“Should the resurrection of Jesus be considered one of the ‘signs’ of the Gospel?”
The resurrection of Jesus Christ should be considered a sign in the Gospel of John. Leon Morris writes “Signs are meant to elicit faith, and Jesus welcomes those who react to signs by believing in Him.” It should be known that signs are used in this Gospel to reveal a truth to us that pertains to Christ’s identity. Towns says “signs were one way Jesus manifested His glory” and they are a “sample of divine power.” G. Campbell Morgan says that the resurrection of Christ, as told in John 20:1-10, is the “Ultimate sign.” Morgan says without this sign Christ would show He has no power and authority and then there would be no Christianity. John MacArthur says, “The ultimate demonstration of Christ’s power over death, and hence proof of His deity, was His resurrection.” As Morris’ quote stated earlier, signs are used to reveal a truth that relates to Christ’s identity and the very act of resurrection reveals His power over death. Morris suggests that due to His deity, Jesus is of such great importance that even death gives place to Him. God alone has such a mighty position and power (over death) and it is here that Christ reveals to have the same position and power for He is God as He had previously claimed. He demonstrated His power and because a sign elicits a response, people must either believe, in faith, the demonstration of His deity in the resurrection or they must reject it. The resurrection of Christ is a sign because it elicits faith, proves a claim, reveals identity and manifests the glory of God.
MacArthur, John. The MacArthur New Testament Commentary: John 12-21. Chicago: Moody Publishers, 2008.
Morgan, G. Campbell. Studies in the Four Gospels. Old Tappan: Fleming H. Revell Company, 1931.
Morris, Leon. Jesus is the Christ: Studies in the Theology of John. Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdman’s Publishing Co., 1989.
Towns, Elmer. The Gospel of John: Believe and Live. Chattanooga: AMG Publishers, 2002.