Summary: Haiti earthquakes & miraculous earthquake of Matt. 27 continue to shake the hearts of men and women!
1. Please open your bibles to Matt. 27:50-54.
(1) In a few moments we will read this passage, which gives a report of a miraculous earthquake. We will study some things that will shake our hearts and cause us to have a stronger faith!
(2) Over the past two weeks we have received much from TV and different news sources about the natural disaster earthquakes and shaking effects that have occurred in Haiti.
(3) During the course of this lesson we will find out that the miraculous earthquake mentioned in Matt. 27:50-54 continues to have a heart shaking effect and causes many people in our world to have a stronger faith.
2. From January 21, 2010 8:57 AM EST News and from the Associate Press I read the following reports and some other things about the natural disaster earthquake in Haiti. I’ll paraphrase:
(1) The death toll is estimated at 200,000, according to Haitian government figures.
(2) As of Thursday 1/21/2010 it is estimated that 80,000 have been buried in mass graves.
(3) Earth-movers are being used to bury 10,000 earthquake victims in a single day while relief workers warn the death toll could increase.
(4) An Associated Press reporter counted 15 burial mounds at Clerzier's site, each covering a wide trench cut into the ground some 25 feet deep, and rising 15 feet into the air.
(5) "I have seen so many children, so many children. I cannot sleep at night and, if I do, it is a constant nightmare," said Foultone Fequiert, 38, his face covered with a T-shirt against the overwhelming stench of death.
(6) Medical clinics have 12-day patient backlogs, untreated injuries are festering and makeshift camps housing thousands of survivors could foster disease, experts said.
(7) "The next health risk could include outbreaks of diarrhea, respiratory tract infections and other diseases among hundreds of thousands of Haitians living in overcrowded camps with poor or nonexistent sanitation," said Dr. Greg Elder.
(7) The commission now estimates 2 million homeless, up from 1.5 million, and says 250,000 are in need of urgent aid.
3. As we all know on Tuesday, January 12 the magnitude 7.0 earthquake first hit Haiti. There have been additional tremors and shakes.
4. On Wednesday at 6:03 a.m. a magnitude 5.9 earthquake hit northwest of Port-au-Prince and sent soldiers and tent city refugees racing for open ground and clouds of dust arose in Port-au-Prince.
5. All of these reports tell of a natural disaster earthquake that continues to shake millions of people in many different and frightful ways.
6. In this lesson we will discuss how that the miraculous earthquake mentioned in Matt. 27:50-54 continues to have shaking effect upon people throughout the whole world and not just in Haiti.
I. FIRST, THIS MIRACULOUS EARTHQUAKE SHAKES OUR HEART TO HAVE A STRONGER FAITH AS WE LEARN THAT THE EARTHQUAKE OCCURRED EXACTLY AT THE TIME OF CHRIST’S DEATH.
1. Let’s read Matt. 27:50-54, “50 And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice, and yielded up His spirit. 51 Then, behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth quaked, and the rocks were split, 52 and the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; 53 and coming out of the graves after His resurrection, they went into the holy city and appeared to many. 54 So when the centurion and those with him, who were guarding Jesus, saw the earthquake and the things that had happened, they feared greatly, saying, “Truly this was the Son of God!”
2. This earthquake was not just a natural disaster that coincidently happened at the particular time that Jesus died.
3. The miraculous earthquake of Matt. 27:50-54 was an exclamation point by the Great God of the universe to communicate to the whole world the importance of the death of His Only-Begotten Son, Jesus, the Christ.
4. The earthquake occurred at the instant of Christ’s final great shout! It was a shout of His victory in fulfilling all that the Father had sent Him to do. At that instant death and the miraculous earthquake came at the same time.
(1) We must understand that the miraculous earthquake did shake, not because of the internal fires under the earth, but rather the shaking began due to the voice above the earth – the voice of God the Son!
(2) The shout of victory pointed out that the work of Redemption – the plan to save the lost had been accomplished from the standpoint of God and Christ providing the gracious death and blood of the Son!
(3) The shout of Christ was the shout of the Laborer entering into His position at the right hand of the Father to be head of His church and king of His kingdom and to be our mediator and high priest (Acts 2:30-34, 1 Tim. 2:5; Hebrews 4:14-16).