Sermons

Summary: In a disbelieving world, we need to believe in the resurrection and the hope it gives us.

April 8, 2012

Easter Worship

Hope is Real

I’m not going to make this easy for you today! I have questions, we all do, don’t you? The range from the wild and weird and crazy to the really deep philosophical and spiritual questions. Today, I want to ask you this question ~ How do we know what’s real? It sounds pretty simple, but it’s not as easy as you may think. And the more we look, the more difficult it may become, until, well, hopefully, you’ll see.

(I show various pictures . . . moon landing, pictures from Julian Beever {which are illusions} etc.)

Have you ever wondered about what’s real and what’s not? There are a lot of people who believe we never landed on the moon. Pictures like these are believed to be really good fakes. NASA went into a studio and made up some great stories with great video and pictures which look real, but aren’t. So, do you know without a doubt that we really sent guys to the moon, who really landed and brought back real moon rocks?

Where’s their parents? How rude for these boys to be playing in the middle of the sidewalk. Look at the people walking all around them. Problem is — they aren’t real? They are a creation of Julian Beever.

What about this globe in the middle of the street? Everybody’s walking around it, until you realize the world really is flat, and you see it from a different angle.

So is this butterfly. It looks real, it looks huge, but what kid is going to be smiling with a giant butterfly, twice his size ready to crash into him?

How about this street, it’s suspended over water and fire. In fact, that family is saving their little girl from falling in. Can you imagine driving down this street without being a little freaked out? But you already know, it’s not real.

Let’s try one more, and you tell me what’s real and what’s not. Before I show this, let me tell you up front, I’m not making a political statement or anything other than questioning what’s real and what’s not.

Most people are familiar with the shooting of Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Florida. If you’ve been following the case at all, you’ve seen pictures of him on the Internet and on the news. You’ve seen demonstrations and protests. But, what’s real and what’s not? What’s the real and true story?

Here are some pictures of Trayvon. They’re not good, they’re not bad. They’re simply pictures. Do they tell a story of his life? No. They’re snippets of a moment in time. Was he a bad kid? I don’t know? Was he a good kid? I don’t know either.

All we know is what we’ve heard on the news programs. And depending upon which flavor of news you watch, you’ll get different stories. I can find a lot of pictures on facebook which may give others a different opinion of us, as well.

So, here’s the question for us this Easter, how do we know what’s real or fake? The only thing I know about Trayvon Martin is that a young man was shot and killed and his family and friends grieve over his loss. I have my own opinions, but today is not about my opinions.

Now, let’s get a little closer to home. Let’s look at ourselves. What are we? Are we real or fake? Sometimes it depends, doesn’t it? Don’t we have our different personas? We wear different masks depending upon where we’re going, and what we’re doing.

We’re one way at home with our family. Then we’re different with our friends, different with coworkers, students, bosses and teachers. Different when we go to the store, even different when we come through these doors and into church.

So, who’s the real you? Who’s the real me? If we were to be really honest, we’re a combination of the good and the bad. After all, we’re sinners, we’re messed up and we can’t fix our problems on our own. We try, but usually that gets us in more trouble.

So, we’ve come to a crossroads. . . and we have decisions to make; decisions which are based on our heart, spirit and mind. What will we do, what do we even believe?

There are lots of people, not just Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists and atheists who say there was either no Jesus or definitely no resurrection. There are even Christians who would say there’s no way someone’s DNA and amino acids, heart, lungs and brain, to name a few, could restart on their own after being dead for 3 days. NO WAY!! So, there’s no empty tomb on Easter morning. Maybe this is a more accurate representation for these folks. Is that where you’re at?

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