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Summary: Because Jesus rose from the dead – so will we. We can look our ancient enemy death, straight in the eye and say, I’m not scared of you. Christians don’t stay in their tombs when they die. Neither are they meant to live in tombs while they are alive.

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Word Count: 2604

This sermon was delivered to St Oswald’s in Maybole,

Ayrshire, Scotland on the 20th April 2014

(a Scottish Episcopal Church in the Dioceses of Glasgow and Dumfries).

Summary: Because Jesus rose from the dead – so will we. We can look our ancient enemy death, straight in the eye and say, I’m not scared of you. Christians don’t stay in their tombs when they die. Neither are they meant to live in tombs while they are alive.

Thesis: We Today need to check the rock watch it roll and become a part of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Acts 10:34-43 Colossians 3:1-4 Matthew 28:1-10 Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24

“Please join me in my prayer.” Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of our hearts, be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, our strength, and our redeemer. Amen. (Ps. 19:14)

Introduction: The Resurrection!

We have just heard the familiar story of the women who went to the tomb to anoint the dead body of Jesus; as we hear every single Easter, but we never tire of this story as it has so many meanings; the most important being that Christ has risen.

In fact this is so important as it sets Christianity apart from all other religions, because Jesus is the only man who has ever conquered death … and he did so for us. This is a claim that no other religion can make. Mind you, no other religion can claim they wrongly condemned, and killed their founder, rather they all hold their founder in high esteem, before and after they died.

But our Lord died just like he said he would in Luke 9:22 "The Son of Man must suffer many things, and be rejected by the elders, chief priests, and teachers of the law, and he must be killed, and on the third day be raised to life", and Jesus told his disciples this, many times, that this would happen, and it needed to happen.

The resurrection was truly a pivotal point in history, as it validated Jesus’ claim that he is the Son of God in the flesh, which means that people do not need to follow a set of impossible rules and regulations to find salvation; … as they would find salvation through him, the risen Christ; the Old Covenant being replaced with a new.

Now let us ask the question, what would be so different if Jesus had not been raised from the dead; in other words, he died like every other human being?

Well everything really, because if we still had a Christianity, people would be following just another holy man, with another set of rules and regulations, and our sermons would be full of nice wee moral stories, with the odd reference to politics. The words of Jesus would merely join the countless words of all the other religions and people would still be striving for God to love them just the same … by trying to be good people, or good persons, without any assurance of the life thereafter.

For us, it is really difficult at times to see how the resurrection changed everything because we are so used to celebrating it, and we worship and follow the teachings of Jesus not too become saved, or to find salvation, but because we are saved, having our salvation assured by accepting Jesus as our Lord. Do you see the difference?

This is far superior than then trying to live up to the letter of the law, which is totally impossible; whereas all we have too do is to get to know him, him who has been raised from the dead, through the Holy Spirit who has been given unto us in order to change us into his “likeness”; so we can live for him, die for him, and be raised from the dead just like him; and we do not need to fear death either, in fact we can look forward to death … as for us, it means a new beginning.

I now want to tell you a story, a true story if I may from the Second World War to try and illustrate this truth, a story a young mother who escaped on the last train out of Poland with a small baby; well as you guess, the train came under attack many times; and the journey which should have taken a few hours ended up taking days.

The food ran out and so did all forms of liquid, and so when they finally arrived at their destination the baby was seriously ill; but fortunately a group of nuns interceded and took the baby to the hospital; to the relief of the mother, but this relief was short; because that night … the hospital was bombed by the Germans, and so when she returned to the hospital after the bombing had stopped … all she could see was debris where the hospital once was. So in horror, she searched the rubble in vain for her baby, or worse, the baby’s body.

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