Elvis, Religion, Elephants, and Life

Southaven, Ms

By: Mike Upchurch

I was talking with one of my close friends the other day and we were musing about a mutual friend who is a huge Elvis fan.  I made the comment that it was a bit strange that a grown man would love a dead guy. Now, I’m not knocking Elvis.  I like his music a lot! I was 26 when he died and had a few encounters with him while living in Whitehaven as a teenager, even delivering prescription drugs to Graceland when I worked for Oliver Drugs my senior year.  But I don’t think this guy was even alive when Elvis was. His worship of the singer originated posthumously. My friend laughed and was to quick to respond with this; “Now wait a minute” he said, “doesn’t that describe someone else we know?”  I knew what he meant. He meant ME!  Referring of course, to my being in love with Jesus!  “But there’s a huge difference!” I exclaimed!  “My guy is alive!!!  “He didn’t even stay dead the whole weekend” I blurted out in my defense!  Jesus said ‘Okay boys, I’m outta’ here’ to all those poor dead souls around Him!” 

We had a good laugh about it together, but the truth is, the very wonderful truth is, Jesus is very much alive!  And reigning as King and as Lord over all the Universe!

See, that’s the difference between Christianity and all other religions. The heads or leaders of all the other religions did not rise from the dead after they died. I haven’t studied every other religion that closely, but I’m positive we have the ONLY living leader!  Buddha? Dead. Mohammed?  Cold dead. The multi-armed men and women and that one with four arms and an elephant head?  Very dead!  They’re all dead!  Doorknob dead!  If they ever even lived. And when they died they assumed room temperature until Judgement Day. 

They are being worshipped today as if they live, but they exist as statues or in paintings. They were written of long ago and millions follow them, but they can’t hear the worship of the throngs of followers they have. The prayers of their faithful go unheard. They can’t judge or reward anyone. THEY ARE DEAD!

Not my guy!  Not JESUS!  He is very much alive!!  I just talked with Him this morning!  He gave me my marching orders for the day!  He told me He’s moving things in my favor!  Let me see Buddha do that!  Let me hear of any other leaders answering the prayers of their faithful millions!   And the key in Jesus dying and His resurrection means your sins can be forgiven if you confess them and submit to Him. No other religion offers that!  No one else died for your sins but Jesus. No one. Ever!

Folks, come to a RISEN Savior!  The only man to ever defeat death!  Remember this important fact; He didn’t rise from the dead as an angel in a new glorified body. And He wasn’t a ghost!  He came back from the dead in His wounded and tortured body!  He came back to life from His death on the cross on Good Friday!  He still had the wounds from His death. Let’s read of an encounter Jesus had with His disciples after His resurrection…..

“While they were telling these things, He Himself stood in their midst and said to them, “Peace be to you.” But they were startled and frightened and thought that they were seeing a spirit. And He said to them, “Why are you troubled, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? See My hands and My feet, that it is I Myself; touch Me and see, for a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.” And when He had said this, He showed them His hands and His feet. While they still could not believe it because of their joy and amazement, He said to them, “Have you anything here to eat?” They gave Him a piece of a broiled fish; and He took it and ate it before them. Now He said to them, “These are My words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things which are written about Me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled.” Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, and He said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Christ would suffer and rise again from the dead the third day, and that repentance for forgiveness of sins would be proclaimed in His name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things.”‭‭Luke‬ ‭24:36-48

That’s MY Jesus!  He had defeated death!  He even ate some fish in front of them to prove He was still human!  It wasn’t till after His ascension that He gained His heavenly immortal body, as we believers will all have when we part this life.  And we all remember doubting Thomas. He wanted proof!  He wanted to see the wounds!

“After eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them. Jesus came, the doors having been shut, and stood in their midst and said, “Peace be with you.” Then He said to Thomas, “Reach here with your finger, and see My hands; and reach here your hand and put it into My side; and do not be unbelieving, but believing.”‭‭John‬ ‭20:26-27

It’s pretty hard to touch the wounds of a ghost!  It was His crucified body and He was alive!

And Jesus is still very much alive today!  And very much in control. And He forgives us of all our sins when we confess them!  And the best part?  He loves you and is waiting for a relationship with you if you don’t know Him!

Try my Jesus!  He’s not just another religious dead guy!  He lives!!!!  Oh and by the way, Elvis loved Jesus too, and sang Gospel music throughout his career.  As a matter of fact, Elvis’ best selling album ever was his Christmas Album, which had “Blue Christmas” of course, but also had four songs proclaiming Jesus’ birth!  Incidentally, it also happens to be the best selling Christmas Album of all time. How’s that for notoriety?  Sing about Jesus among other things and you top the charts! 

And that’s the way I see it!

Pastor Mike