Summary: This message takes a look at what might have happened that first Easter night
A Night To Remember
I went to a very small Christian school. When I graduated there were 66 people, not in my class, that was the entire high school 9-12 grades. So its safe to say we all knew each other. My circle of friends easily spanned across several grades. Well, one of the highlights of the year was always the Junior-Senior Banquet, equivalent to the prom. Since my school was so small it often was more then just Junior and seniors. The task of planning, arranging decorating the whole nine yards for the banquet fell on the sophomore class. So as a tenth grader I had the opportunity to work on this project and in doing so, sophomores were also allowed to attend the event. The theme we decided upon was “A Nite To Remember”. I can still remember the order of ceremonies pamphlet, especially since I designed and drew the artwork for the front cover. It indeed was a night to remember - to bad I don’t remember a thing. I don’t necessarily have the greatest memory and actually there wasn’t anything noteworthy that occurred for me to remember. Ah a night to remember, yeah okay whatever!
But think back to that first Easter morning, it was just the start of something new, because that evening was definitely a night to remember. One that those present would never forget, even if they tried. So lets read about that night
John 20:19-24 Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you And when he had so said, he showed unto them his hands and his side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost Whose so ever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose so ever sins ye retain, they are retained But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came.
I. That Same Day
A. That Morning He Had Risen
1. First day of the week
2. This is why we worship on Sunday
3. To remember the marvelous Resurrection of the Lord.
B. He had already appeared
1. In the previous verses to Mary Magdalene
a. Mary was weeping outside the tomb
b. she thought someone had taken body
c. “they have taken away my Lord, And I know not where they have laid Him” she says in vs. 13.
a. Jesus meeting women on road
b. These women had just been instructed by angels at the tomb to go tell disciples.
a. story of appearing to 2 believers while walking.
b. Didn’t reveal Himself at first
c. had conversation about Jesus.
d. His resurrection was obviously what everyone was talking about
Dancing w/ stars, American Idol
e. Eventually Revealed Himself
C. The Night to Remember
1. Not yet appeared to any disciples
a. how do we know?
b. verse 19 disciples were together with the doors locked fair fear of the Jews still unsure, still feared for their lives
c. they had no doubt by this point heard the testimony of Mary
2. But suddenly He appeared
a. Jesus came and stood in their midst
b. Peace be unto you
This reflects Hebrew Shalom , a greeting of peace
This peace is unknown to the unsaved
It secures composure in difficult troubles
It dissolves fears
It rules in the hearts of God’s people to maintain harmony
c. No doubt they were afraid
Luke’s account state they thought they were seeing a ghost
d. He proved Himself with His nail scars and spear scar
Yes there will be scars in Heaven 5 that we know of
one in each hand and foot, and one in the side of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
D. Oh this was truly a Night to remember
1. How could they ever forget?
2. You wouldn’t if you knew someone had been beaten beyond recognition, brutally murdered and buried and then amazingly 3 days later they appeared to you inside a heavily bolted door.
3. All would remember, except one.
4. One of Jesus’ faithful followers was not present.
II. Oh where oh where can little Tommy be?
We don’t know why Thomas was absent the first time Jesus appeared to the disciples, but he was reluctant to believe this witness to Christ’s resurrection. Not even 10 friends could change his mind.