Summary: To establish that there will be no rapture, seven years tribulation or 1000 year reign on earth at Jesus Second Advent.
A. Aim: To discuss the theme, "Christian Certainties."
B. Pro: To establish that there will be no rapture, seven years tribulation or 1000 year reign on earth at Jesus Second Advent.
C. Text: 1 Cor 15:20-26
1. He is risen:
2. He is reigning:
3. He is returning:
1. In this world in which we live there are many uncertainties. These are perilous time. Corporate scandals, stocks market crashes, stocks and bonds once a good means of financial security-now uncertain. World peace is constantly threatened. Terrorism on every front, now even in America. Gang violence so terrible, it leaves doubt that our children or grand children will even finish grade school, much less college. Some one has said the only thing that is certain, is uncertainty itself. Beside these, still another thing plagues our world, our nation, and the church; and that is religious uncertainty. In 1980, a religious group surveyed thousand of religious leader concerning the virgin birth, the miracles of Christ, and the resurrection from the dead. Many denied all these. Others could not determine their scripturalness from the bible. And some close to us even doubt these spiritual truths of the scripture. But, Paul affirmed three things in our scripture lesson, which we desire to share with you this day.
2. First, Paul affirms the resurrection of Christ from the dead. Many theories are advocated today concerning this vital doctrine of the NT. Some would have us to believe several false doctrines concerning Christ’s resurrection. To mention a few, he just swooned away, but did not die; his disciples stole the body; the women went to the wrong tomb; and finally, he was raised spiritually, but his body has been turned into gases and is being preserved somewhere as a memorial unto God (JW). But Paul, declared: "But now is Christ risen from the dead..." Cor 15:20 If there be no resurrection: "then we are men most miserable and yet in our sins."
3. Secondly, Paul affirms that Christ is NOW REIGNING over his kingdom. And all of us are worthy subjects in the kingdom of Christ. He says: "For he must reign till he hath put all enemies under his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death." 1 Cor 15:25 Note that he reigns NOW and until he comes to abolish death. Not he will reign when he comes! Christ was raise: for our justification; to declare his Sonship; to sit on David throne; and to reign over his kingdom, "as king of Kings and lord of Lords," until death shall be destroyed; when Jesus returns to claim his own - "the redeemed from the earth."
4. Lastly, Paul affirms that Christ is returning. At his return there will be a resurrection of the saints. He says: "For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. But every man in his own order; Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming..." When he comes Paul says: "He shall deliver up the kingdom to God" Not set it up. When he comes: "He shall put down all rule and authority and power" Not take it up. Unlike many so called religious leaders today; Paul did not speak of a rapture, seven years of tribulation; or a 1000 year reign on earth when he comes, but rather when he comes this will be "THE END." 1 Cor 15:21-24
BODY OF LESSON
I. HE IS RISEN:
A. The beloved Apostle in this text states that Christ had indeed been raised from the dead. He says: "But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept." 1 Cor 15:20 Christ’s resurrection was the subject of his teaching to his apostles for nearly 3½ years. Mt 16:21"From that time forth began Jesus to show unto his disciples, how that he must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priest and scribes, and be killed, and be raise again the third day." Paul says in Rom 4:25 "Who was delivered for our offenses, and was raised again for our justification." Elsewhere he says: "Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David, according to the flesh; And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead." Rom 1:3-4
B. The message of the resurrection of Christ was the subject of the apostles’ preaching. 1 Cor 15:1-2; 12-19 Peter on Pentecost. Acts 2:29-36 Paul’s preaching. Acts 17:19-34 "And the times of this ignorance... Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead. And when they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some mocked, and others said, we will hear thee again of this matter." The resurrection of Christ is an established fact in history, as well as his death, and his life. How can any accept his life and death which we learn from scripture; and deny his resurrection which also we learn from scripture? The church has lost the importance of apostolic preaching concerning the resurrection of Christ.