Summary: THE CROSS BROUGHT THE FORGIVENESS OF SINS, AND THE RESURECTION BROUGHT US ETERNAL LIFE!
AN EASTER SALVATION
ROMANS 10: 1-17
SUNRISE SERVICE APRIL 11, 2004 7:00AM
INTRODUCTION: Well over three hundred verses are concerned with the subject of Jesus’ resurrection in the New Testament. We are told that this event is a sign for unbelievers (Matthew 12:38-40); cf. John 20:24-29) as well as the answer for the believer’s doubt (Luke 24:38-43). It serves as the guarantee that Jesus’ teachings are true (Acts 2:22-24; 1 Corrinthians 15:12-20) and is the center of the gospel itself (Romans 4:24-25, 10:9; 1 Corrinthians 15:1-4). Further, the resurrection is the impetus for evangelism (Matt. 28:18-20; Acts 10:39-43), the key indication of the believer’s daily power to live the Christian life (Rom. 6:4-14, 8:9-11; Phil. 3:10) and the reason for the total commitment of our lives (Rom. 7:4; 1 Cor. 15:57-58). The resurrection even addresses the fear of death (John 11:25; 1 Cor. 15:54-58; cf. Hebrews 2:14-15) and is related to the second coming of Jesus (Acts 1:11; Revelation 1:7). Lastly, this event is a model of the Christian’s resurrection from the dead (Acts 4:2; 1 Cor. 6:14; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18) and provides a foretaste of heaven for the believer (Philippians 3:20-21; 1 Peter 1:3-5). Gary R. Habermas & J.P. Moreland, Immortality - The Other Side of Death, Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1992, p. 245.
TRANSITION THOUGHT: This morning we gather to celebrate the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. We have made it through the horrifying crucifixion. We have mourned the body laid in the tomb and now we gather to find understanding and to hear again that the tomb is empty and just what this means to us. It is an Easter Salvation!
THESIS SENTENCE: THE CROSS BROUGHT THE FORGIVENESS OF SINS, AND THE RESURECTION BROUGHT US ETERNAL LIFE!
I. AN EASTER SALVATION IS NOT OUR WORK VV. 1-3
A. OUR WORK DOES NOT EQUAL OUR RIGTEOUSNESS
B. OUR WORK STANDS IN OPPOSITION TO GOD RIGHTEOUSNESS
II. AN EASTER SALVATION IS NOT OF OUR CONTROL VV. 4-8
A. CHRIST IS OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS
B. RIGHTEOUSNESS IS NOT FOR OUR TAKING
III. AN EASTER SALVATION IS OUR CONFESSION OF FAITH
A. CONFESSION IS: HE IS LORD PHILIPPIANS 2: 6-11
B. CONFESSION IS: GOD RAISED HIM FROM THE DEAD JOHN 20:24-29
C. CONFESSION IS: ASSURANCE OF SALVATION ROMANS 10: 9-13
ILLUSTRATION: Little Philip, born with Down’s syndrome, attended a third-grade Sunday School class with several eight-year-old boys and girls. Typical of that age, the children did not readily accept Philip with his differences, according to an article in leadership magazine. But because of a creative teacher, they began to care about Philip and accept him as part of the group, though not fully.
The Sunday after Easter the teacher brought L’eggs pantyhose containers, the kind that look like large eggs. Each receiving one, the children were told to go outside on that lovely spring day, find some symbol for new life, and put it in the egg-like container. Back in the classroom, they would share their new-life symbols, opening the containers one by one in surprise fashion. After running about the church property in wild confusion, the students returned to the classroom and placed the containers on the table. Surrounded by the children, the teacher began to open them one by one. After each one, whether a flower, butterfly, or leaf, the class would ooh and ahh.
Then one was opened, revealing nothing inside. The children exclaimed, That’s stupid. That’s not fair. Somebody didn’t do their assignment."
Philip spoke up, "That’s mine."
"Philip, you don’t ever do things right!" the student retorted. "There’s nothing there!"
"I did so do it," Philip insisted. "I did do it. It’s empty. the tomb was empty!"
Silence followed. From then on Philip became a full member of the class. He died not long afterward from an infection most normal children would have shrugged off. At the funeral this class of eight-year-olds marched up to the altar not with flowers, but with their Sunday school teacher, each to lay on it an empty pantyhose egg.
CONCLUSION: CLOSE YOUR EYES. YOU ARE STANDING AT THE EMPTY TOMB. WHAT DO YOU BELIEVE? WHAT DO YOU CONFESS? HAVE YOU EXPERIENCED AN EASTER SALVATION? JESUS IS ALIVE! WE BELIEVE THAT GOD RAISED HIM FROM THE DEAD AND WE CONFESS THAT JESUS CHRIST IS LORD! TO THE GLORY OF GOD! AMEN!
BENEDICTION: HEBREWS 13: 20-21