Summary: Easter Morning Sermon focusing on the resurrections in the Bible presenting the idea "God is in the business of resurrection."
THREAD: GOD IS IN THE BUSINESS OF RESURRECTION [CONGREGATION REPEATS]
My purpose today is to convince you or to remind you that God is in the business of resurrection. He always has been and He always will be. Now in order to convince you of such a thing, there needs to be a whole lot of evidence to support that claim. We can’t just say something like that without reliable consistent proof. In addition, to say something is a business, means there needs to be multiple events that happen to show us that God is in the habit of resurrection. Someone somewhere needs to benefit. Business also indicates a ‘supply’ and ‘demand’ situation. So let’s take a look at the Bible and see why and how God is in the business of resurrection.
FIRST EVENT [1 KINGS 17:17-22]
Our first story of resurrection comes from the Old Testament from the book of 1 Kings. There was a wild man of God, a prophet, named Elijah. There was a drought and famine and Elijah was staying with a woman and her son. There was a miracle to provide food for all of them, but that is another story. During Elijah’s time with the family, the little boy died. The woman was distraught and thought she was being punished in some way because of her life choices. Let’s read what happened:
READ 1 Kings 17:17-22
“Sometime later the son of the woman who owned the house became ill. He grew worse and worse, and finally stopped breathing. 18 She said to Elijah, "What do you have against me, man of God? Did you come to remind me of my sin and kill my son?" 19 "Give me your son," Elijah replied. He took him from her arms, carried him to the upper room where he was staying, and laid him on his bed. 20 Then he cried out to the LORD, "O LORD my God, have you brought tragedy also upon this widow I am staying with, by causing her son to die?" 21 Then he stretched himself out on the boy three times and cried to the LORD, "O LORD my God, let this boy's life return to him!" 22 The LORD heard Elijah's cry, and the boy's life returned to him, and he lived.”
What do you call that? Resurrection!
I want you to notice that the prophet Elijah did not raise this boy from the dead, but prayed over him and God raised Him to life. God answered Elijah’s prayer (verse 22) and the little boy lived again. That is an amazing story that is actually repeated with his successor.
SECOND EVENT [2 KINGS 4:32-35]
EliJAH had a prophet that followed him named EliSHA. Elisha was a wonderful servant of God much like his mentor Elijah. Elisha became friends with a man and his wife and they had no children. God blessed them with a child and one day the child complained about his head and died. By that time, Elisha had moved on, but loved this family. The wife came and begged Elisha for help. Let’s read what happened:
READ 2 Kings 4:32-35
“When Elisha reached the house, there was the boy lying dead on his couch. 33 He went in, shut the door on the two of them and prayed to the LORD. 34 Then he got on the bed and lay upon the boy, mouth to mouth, eyes to eyes, hands to hands. As he stretched himself out upon him, the boy's body grew warm. 35 Elisha turned away and walked back and forth in the room and then got on the bed and stretched out upon him once more. The boy sneezed seven times and opened his eyes.”
What do you call that? Resurrection!
Notice if you would please where the power comes from for this boy to be raised to life? It is not medicine. It is not luck. It is not a medical procedure. In this case, like the one we just read, the prophet prays to God and God grants the request and the boy is resurrected. In this case, notice even that the body was cold and grew warm when he came back to life.
THIRD EVENT [2 KINGS 13:20-21]
Our third resurrection event happened to Elisha, the prophet we just talked about, but it happened after Elisha was already dead. This passage is such a testament to the power of our God. Let’s read this brief account:
READ 2 Kings 13:20-21
“Elisha died and was buried. Now Moabite raiders used to enter the country every spring. 21 Once while some Israelites were burying a man, suddenly they saw a band of raiders; so they threw the man's body into Elisha's tomb. When the body touched Elisha's bones, the man came to life and stood up on his feet.”