Greetings from Faith Lutheran Church in Eldorado,
The fuller statement is "Alleluia! Christ is risen! He is risen indeed! Alleluia!"
Possibly of all the Christian's statements, i.e. "What would Jesus do?" or "The Lord be with you," the proclamation of Jesus's victory over the grave, Satan and sin, in these words, is the most significant, joyful and intense statement one can say.
It's the "bomb." "It rocks." Actually, it is the event that rocks, but expressing it is both a proclamation and confession that defines you and your belief.
The angel at the tomb proclaimed, "He is risen," as recorded by both Matthew and Mark. The angel also added, "He is not here." This was shocking news to the women who first came to the tomb and they were not sure how to receive it. Jesus is recorded as telling His disciples three times that He was going to rise from the dead, but because they were looking for an earthly kingdom that Jesus and, of course, they would reign over, (two even had their mom ask Him they could sit at His right and left hand), they didn't see either the crucifixion or resurrection coming, even though it had been plainly told to them.
Christ is risen, so we'll live forever. This greatest miracle of all times has personal and everlasting consequences for all who believe. Mankind was not created to die but live in joy and harmony with God and each other. We really messed that up, not only for mankind but for the entire universe.
Christ through His miraculous resurrection was the one that was able to change our eternal destiny. To say, "He is risen" is also to say, "This was for me and the whole creation." Jesus' resurrection is not just an event that happened 2000 years ago. Why? His resurrection touches those who died before Christ and who live after. Because Jesus lives, Abraham, Moses, David, and all the Old Testament saints live just as all the New Testament saints live. A saint is one who is found in Christ's righteousness through faith.
Finally, Christ is risen and in him we rise. We rise to new life in the first resurrection, our baptism. Our new life in Christ is now. Resurrected spiritually and being renewed daily by God's power of Word and sacrament. So that daily dying to sin we also daily rise as "Easter people," who are alive in Christ. We are no longer captive by the spiritual death of Satan's kingdom. We look forward to the second resurrection in which the full and final effect of Christ's resurrection will be seen. He will raise the dead and decayed corpses to new life and all who died in Christ will live in the new heavens and new earth never again to be dominated and gutted by Satan, sin and death.
So I say again, He is Risen, He is Risen indeed, Alleluia!
* David Otten is pastor of Faith Lutheran Church in Eldorado,