Summary: When the women went to Jesus’s tomb, they went out to perform the duties of UNDERtakers, only to find that God had OVERtaken events. This sermon has both a salvation and a rededication application as well as application for believers going through trials.
From Morticians to Missionaries
April 5, 2015
(A PowerPoint presentation for this sermon is available by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org.)
Adapted from a sermon
SCRIPTURE READING: Luke 24:1-12 – “Now upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulchre, bringing the spices which they had prepared, and certain others with them. 2 And they found the stone rolled away from the sepulchre. 3 And they entered in, and found not the body of the Lord Jesus. 4 And it came to pass, as they were much perplexed thereabout, behold, two men stood by them in shining garments: 5 And as they were afraid, and bowed down their faces to the earth, they said unto them, Why seek ye the living among the dead? 6 He is not here, but is risen: remember how he spake unto you when he was yet in Galilee, 7 Saying, The Son of man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again. 8 And they remembered his words, 9 And returned from the sepulchre, and told all these things unto the eleven, and to all the rest. 10 It was Mary Magdalene, and Joanna, and Mary the mother of James, and other women that were with them, which told these things unto the apostles. 11 And their words seemed to them as idle tales, and they believed them not. 12 Then arose Peter, and ran unto the sepulchre; and stooping down, he beheld the linen clothes laid by themselves, and departed, wondering in himself at that which was come to pass.”
TEXT: Luke 24:8-9 – “And they remembered his words, 9 And returned from the sepulchre, and told all these things unto the eleven, and to all the rest.”
The chapters prior to Luke 24 tell us about the horrific crucifixion of Jesus Christ.
The crucifixion of Jesus had an immediate effect on the characters in the story:
• THE PRIESTS were now free of the One who had threatened their authority.
• THE PHARISEES had finally purged themselves of the One who exposed their hypocrisy and self-righteousness.
• THE ROMAN AUTHORITIES were rid of one they thought to be a rabble-rouser and disturber of the peace.
The defenders of Jesus had a different perspective:
• His disciples were scattered, discouraged, hopeless, fearful.
• And PETER—yes, poor, dear Peter—who was before boastful, is now a crushed and broken man.
Then we come to our text in Luke 24: The women make their way to the tomb to embalm the Lord’s body. This was the first day of the week, the VERY FIRST “LORD’S DAY.” It was very early in the morning, making it THE FIRST SUNRISE SERVICE. When they arrived, the women were surprised to see that the stone was rolled away. And suddenly they’re confronted by these two men in shining garments.
As we look at the Easter story today, I’d like you to notice three important things in our text:
I. FIRST, NOTICE THAT THE WOMEN REMEMBERED HIS WORDS. – verses 5-8 – “And as they were afraid, and bowed down their faces to the earth, they said unto them, Why seek ye the living among the dead? 6 He is not here, but is risen: remember how he spake unto you when he was yet in Galilee, 7 Saying, The Son of man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again. 8 And they remembered his words,”
The two men in shining garments, who no doubt were angels, asked the question: “Why seek ye the living among the dead?” in verse 5.
That’s a good question even today, is it not? People are still arguing about the resurrection. All sorts of far-fetched, even bizarre explanations have been proffered to explain away the resurrection. Yet after two thousand years of speculation, conjecture, phony theories, and fanciful interpretations, there STILL is no other logical explanation for the record we have in the Gospels other than that Jesus did indeed rise from the dead. To all the scoffers, we can still ask, “Why seek ye the living among the dead?”
And then in verse 6 the angels said, “He is not here.” Don’t look for the Savior in the CEMETERY! Don’t look for Him in that TOMB in Jerusalem! Don’t waste your time searching ANYWHERE! HE LIVES! HE IS RISEN! “HE IS NOT HERE!” the angels said.
And then Luke tells us in verse 8 of our text, “THEN THEY REMEMBERED.” Remembered what?
Go back to the Gospel of Matthew, chapter 12 for a moment. Jesus had told them what would happen, and now they remembered:
In Matthew 12:40 Jesus had said, “For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.”