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Journey To The Heart of the Earth

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Sermon shared by Amy Bickel

September 2006
Summary: Part 4 in the series There Is Power In the Blood. Takes a close look at what happened after Jesus’ death and resurrection.
Denomination: Baptist
Audience: Believer adults
Sermon:
There Is Power In The Blood – Part 4
A Journey to the Heart of the Earth

Today we have reached the end of our Bible study on There is Power in the Blood. We started our journey in heaven with the first sin and the defilement of the heavenly temple. We looked at what it takes to forgive and cleanse anything from sin – which according to Hebrews 9:22 is blood. We saw how only one man in history, Jesus Christ, could cleanse us from our sins, because He is the only man to have blood uncontaminated by sin. This fact made Him the perfect sacrifice for the offering of forgiveness and atonement of sin. And finally, last week we explored two of the unusual signs that occurred at Calvary that pointed to the fact that Jesus really was that sacrifice, and that no other sacrifice was needed.

This morning we are going to finish our study by looking at the events that occurred after Calvary. We know that when Jesus died on the cross, His body was removed and laid in a borrowed tomb, and that it remained there for three days and three nights. On the third day we have the miraculous story of Easter. Jesus rose from the dead and walked out of that tomb alive and well. No other religion can make the same claim. We worship a Savior who is alive! Praise God!

1. Where Did He Go?

But how many of you know what was really going on during those three days and three nights that He was in the tomb? Remember that we are three-fold beings. We have a body, a spirit, and a soul. When we die it’s only our body that dies, not our spirit and soul. They continue to live on. This was true of Jesus as well. He had a physical body as well as a spirit and a soul. He was fully God as well as being fully human. So, that leads us to the first question we are going to tackle today, just where did Jesus’ spirit and soul go during those three days and nights that His body was lying in the grave?

Well, the Bible doesn’t leave us guessing. In fact, it tells us exactly where Jesus went. Look at Ephesians 4:9, “Now that He (Jesus) ascended, what is it but that He also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?” And Jesus Himself tells us where He was headed in Matthew 12:40, “For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.”

So according to Scripture, which by the way is the only reliable source that we have, Jesus’ spirit and soul spent three days and three nights in the heart of the earth while His physical body lay in the tomb. But then, knowing this brings forth even more questions, doesn’t it? Questions like, why did He into the heart of the earth? What was there, and what was He doing there?



2. What was there?

Again we can find the answers to these questions in the Bible. In the gospel of Luke chapter 16 and verses 19-31 we find a fascinating story which Jesus told about a man named Lazarus who was a beggar who was full of sores and a rich man who dressed luxuriously and fared well every day of his life. Now this is a long passage, so we are not going to read it in its entirety. Instead we’re going to read verses 22-26. I hope that when you get home, you will take the time to read all the verses for yourself because from these verses we can see what was in the heart of the earth that required the presence of a Savior.
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