Sermons

Summary: There isn’t a locked door strong enough to keep Jesus out.

Behind Closed Doors of Easter

John 20:19-29

Mar. 23, 2008 FBC, Chester Mike Fogerson, Pastor

Introduction

A A Muslim said to a Christian, "WE Muslims have one thing you Christians do not have. When we go to Medina (Saudi Arabia), we find a coffin and know that Mohammed lived because his body is in it. But when, you Christians go to Jerusalem, you find nothing but an empty tomb."

1 "Thank you!" exclaimed the Christian.

2 "What you say is absolutely true, and that makes the eternal difference. The reason we find an empty tomb is because we serve a risen Christ." (The Speakers Quote Book, Nelson, page 64)

B He’s Alive!

1 So when it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and when the doors were shut where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in their midst and said* to them, "Peace be with you." 20 And when He had said this, He showed them both His hands and His side. The disciples then rejoiced when they saw the Lord. 21 So Jesus said to them again, "Peace be with you; as the Father has sent Me, I also send you." 22 And when He had said this, He breathed on them and said* to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 "If you forgive the sins of any, their sins have been forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they have been retained." 24 But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus , was not with them when Jesus came. 25 So the other disciples were saying to him, "We have seen the Lord!" But he said to them, "Unless I see in His hands the imprint of the nails, and put my finger into the place of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe." 26 After eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them. Jesus came* , the doors having been shut , and stood in their midst and said, "Peace be with you." 27 Then He said* to Thomas, "Reach here with your finger, and see My hands; and reach here your hand and put it into My side; and do not be unbelieving, but believing." 28 Thomas answered and said to Him, "My Lord and my God!" 29 Jesus said* to him, "Because you have seen Me, have you believed? Blessed are they who did not see, and yet believed." John 20:19-29 (NASB)

a Thomas, Didymas Greek for twin.

b Friends called him T. Diddy.

2 Whose his twin? I’ve been his twin before.

a Doubted, needed confirmation, personal experience . . .

b Maybe we’ve all been Thomas twin.

C Let’s look at the locked door the disciples hide behind and see what happened behind closed doors on Easter.

I Locked door

A The disciples (abandoned, left, denied, betrayed) had holed up in a motel room.

1 Locked the door, moved the dresser in front of the door, whispering...scared.

a In the middle of their fear, anxiety, discouragement-who shows up but Jesus.

b There wasn’t a lock big enough to keep Him out.

2 He didn’t get on them, confront them about leaving Him, He just says, "Shalom-peace" (let them off the hook).

3 Jesus gives His disciples a new mission: "sent" So Jesus said to them again, "Peace be with you; as the Father has sent Me, I also send you." John 20:21 (NASB)

a And when He had said this, He breathed on them and said* to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. John 20:22 (NASB) Anytime God gives you a new mission He’ll give you the power, gifts to do it.

b The disciples experienced an outpouring of the presence of God.

aa Had to be there to believe it, because Thomas wasn’t buying it.

bb The 10 disciples who went to church experienced a fresh move of God.

B Thomas wasn’t believing, but doubting.

1 Thomas is remembered for his doubt, but it was not always that way.

a Therefore Thomas, who is called Didymus , said to his fellow disciples, "Let us also go, so that we may die with Him." John 11:16 (NASB) The Jews in Judah wanted to kill Jesus, stone Him, & Thomas said, "I’ll roll with You."

b At one time He trusted in the power of the Lord!

2 When Thomas heard about the church service he missed, he marked it up as emotionalism, mass hysteria, delusions.

a I must put my finger in the hole, side, SEE with my own eyes...then I’ll believe.

b Have you ever done anything like that? "Lord, if you do this, that, & the other...I’ll believe in/serve You."

C Jesus appeared in the room-just like before.

1 Doors locked, dresser in front of door...

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