Summary: An Easter Message that declares the resurrection of Jesus as a historical fact.
“Because Jesus Lives”
-The Resurrection is a Historical Fact-
In His closing remarks before his ascension into heaven Jesus gave this promise, “I’ll be with you always to the very end of the age.” Our hope today is the fact that Jesus rose from the dead. He is alive and will be with us unto the end of this earthly kingdom.
Because we have not personally witnessed the resurrection, or haven’t witnessed answers to specific prayers, it’s easy to doubt the historical fact of the resurrection. In fact there are many things we find that are confusing.
Why is hamburger called hamburger when it’s made of beef?
Why do you put suits in garment bags and garments in suitcases?
Why do you drive on a parkway and park in a driveway? Why do they say apartments when they’re all stuck together? In fact, why do they call buildings “buildings”? If they’ve finished, shouldn’t they be called “builts”? When two airplanes almost collide, they call it a near-miss; shouldn’t they call it a near-hit? It was a complete miss! And that black box flight recorder that’s never damaged in a plane crash—why don’t they make the whole airplane out of that stuff?
There are many questions and mysteries in life, aren’t there? It’s interesting that you can tell someone there are 400 billion stars in the universe, and he will believe you, but tell him a bench has wet paint, and he’ll have to touch it?
On Easter Sunday we celebrate the most historical event in human history. The Apostle Paul said that if Jesus did not rise from the dead then all our preaching is in vain and life itself is meaningless. If Jesus did not rise from the dead then we have no hope for forgiveness of sin and life after death.
The resurrection of Christ proves that Jesus is who He said He was. He is the Son of God.
I. There Are Barriers to Believing in the Resurrection of Jesus
When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome brought spices so that they might go to anoint Jesus’ body. Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb and they asked each other, “Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?” Mark 16:1-3
Mark records the importance that women had as followers of Jesus. Mark 14:3-9 - The account is given of Jesus dining in the home of Simon the leper. A woman entered the home and poured a bottle of precious perfume over the head of Jesus. The value of the perfume is estimated to be worth a year’s wages. Some of those present strongly rebuked the woman for her reckless use of costly perfume. Jesus said the woman did a beautiful thing by anointing him to prepare him for his burial.
After his death and burial three women wanted to give Jesus a proper burial by anointing his body to express their love and devotion. Their only concern was how they could move the huge stone that covered the opening to the tomb where Jesus had been laid. The women knew which tomb Jesus was in because Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Jesus observed where Joseph of Arimathea, a prominent member of the council, laid the body.
The women knew the huge stone was too heavy for them to move, but probably thought they could find someone to give them a hand.
Here’s a fact, the women believed Jesus was still in the tomb. There are many people today who believe Jesus is still in the tomb he was buried in over 2000 year ago.
The popular book, The DaVinci Code, is a fictional book, but is presented by many as nearly a historical fact and truth. In fact it was the early church that did a cover up of the real Jesus. According to the book Jesus is still in the grave because he was a mere man. According to the book, Jesus married Mary Magdalene and they had children after Jesus traveled to France. Their children intermarried with the French royal family. According to the book, The early church deceived the world by covering up the true story.
According to this account, since Jesus is still in the grave, our Christian faith is based upon a lie. Remember The DaVince Code is fiction and has no historical evidence of the facts it proposes.
Another recent popular book is the “Gospel of Judas,” This book is an authentic book written around 150 – 170 AD. But this Gospel is not authoritative. The Gospel of Judas was condemned by the early church Fathers because its teachings were contrary to the New Testament. The Gospel of Judas follows the philosophy of a group known as Gnostics. Gnostics taught that Jesus did not come to earth as a man. He lived on earth in a spiritual body. Gnostics taught that the human body is sinful. Gnostics believed that everything associated with the body is evil. Getting married is bad and having children is also bad.