Summary: We at Easter need to be COOL by doing the following actions: 1. Check the rock. 2. Observe the empty tomb. 3. Open our spiritual eyes. 4. Look and see Jesus.
Check the Rock! It Rocks! COOL!: Easter Sermon 2004
Thesis: We at Easter need to be COOL by doing the following actions: 1. Check the rock. 2. Observe the empty tomb. 3. Open our spiritual eyes. 4. Look and see Jesus.
So they went and made the tomb secure by putting a seal on the stone and posting the guard. (Mat 27:66 NIV)
After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb. There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. The guards were so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men the angel said to the women, "Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples: ’He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him.’ Now I have told you." So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his disciples. Suddenly Jesus met them. "Greetings," he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him. Then Jesus said to them, "Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me." While the women were on their way, some of the guards went into the city and reported to the chief priests everything that had happened. When the chief priests had met with the elders and devised a plan, they gave the soldiers a large sum of money, telling them, "You are to say, and ‘His disciples came during the night and stole him away while we were asleep.’ If this report gets to the governor, we will satisfy him and keep you out of trouble." So the soldiers took the money and did as they were instructed. And this story has been widely circulated among the Jews to this very day. 16Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Mat 28:1-20 NIV)
Other key verses:
When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought 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?" But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away.(Mark 16:1-4 NIV)
Key to this historical passage is in "the stone" "the rock or stone in front of the tomb" yes "Check the Rock!" It’s been moved!
The Romans and Pharisees had sealed it and guarded it but "Check out the Rock it’s been moved!"
Would it not be awesome if we could travel through time back to this historical event and experience it for ourselves? Would it not have been marvelous to see with our own eyes the rock moved out of the way? Would it not have been exhilarating to have observed the inside the empty tomb and met an angel and seen that He was not there? Would it not be inspiring to have seen that the rock was moved and that the Rock really rocks? Would it not have been cool to have met and experienced the resurrected Jesus? To have touched Jesus like Thomas did?
May be the real questions for this Easter are?
* How can we today in 2004 see and experience the moved rock, the empty tomb and that Jesus really is alive and still moves rocks?
* How can we experience – personally – communally – nationally – globally an empty tomb for ourselves?
* How can we experience and see that an unmovable rock has been moved out of the way so that we can observe an empty tomb?