Summary: In this lesson we look at three stories that bolster our faith in the God who moved the Stone, who is the God who still moves stones.
A. Happy Easter to everyone – it is wonderful to be together on this Lord’s Day!
B. As we get started, I want you to take a look at this cartoon – it really tickled me.
1. That resurrection morning, Jesus told the angel at the tomb, “I want you to fold up my burial clothes, wait for Mary, and remember this is serious…no hiding and yelling ‘boo’.” (I wonder if angels are playful, practical jokers)
C. The story is told of a minister who waited in line to have his car filled with gas just before a long holiday weekend.
1. The attendant worked quickly, but there were many cars ahead of him.
2. Finally, the attendant motioned the preacher toward a vacant pump.
3. “Preacher,” said the young man, “I’m sorry about the delay. It seems as if everyone waits until the last minute to get ready for a long trip.”
4. The minister chuckled, “I know what you mean. It’s the same in my business.”
D. Today is the one thousand, nine hundred, and seventy-sixth (1976th) anniversary of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. (If you put his death and resurrection in 33 AD)
1. For centuries Christians have recognized this day as the day that Jesus, the Son of God, came back to life and came out of the grave.
2. Many people who do not regularly attend worship services, feel a special pull in their hearts, and make their way to places of worship on Easter Sunday.
3. And why is that? What is it about the resurrection that is so appealing?
E. Well, I believe the resurrection of Jesus is so compelling, because it confirms the ultimate power of God, and enables us to have faith and hope.
1. Since our very creation, we human beings have recognized our own weakness and vulnerability.
2. We long for a God who is all-powerful and all-loving. A God who cares about our struggles, and is able to do something about them.
3. We find that kind of strength and hope in God the Father and his Son, Jesus Christ.
F. Therefore, many of us come on this Resurrection Day to be reminded of the God who moved the stone, and the God who still moves stones.
1. See each of us are on a journey from here to eternity.
2. None of us know how long our earthly sojourn may be – for some it will be shorter than they think, for others it will be longer.
3. Nevertheless, short or long, we all will someday pass from this life and we must begin making preparations - we must not wait until the last minute.
4. Embracing the hope of the Resurrection and employing the power of the Resurrection of Jesus are an important part of our preparations.
5. In today’s lesson we will be looking at three stories that will bolster our faith in the God who moved the stone, who is the God who still moves stones.
I. The first story is - The Story of the Death of a SON.(Luke 7:11-17)
A. Try to put yourself into the story. You are leaving the church building. The funeral is over.
1. You are on the way to the burial. Ahead of you walk six men who carry the coffin that carries the body of your son. Your only son.
2. You’re numb from the sorrow. You’ve lost your husband, and now you’ve lost your only son.
3. Now you have no family.
4. If you had any more tears, you’d weep. If you had any more faith, you’d pray.
5. But both are in short supply. So, you just stare at the back of the wooden box.
B. Suddenly the procession stops. A man has stepped in front of the casket.
1. You don’t know him. You’ve never seen him. He wasn’t at the funeral. You have no idea what he is doing.
2. Before you can object, he steps up to you and says, “Don’t cry.”
3. And you think to yourself, “Don’t cry? Don’t cry! This is a funeral. My son is dead! Who are you to tell me not to cry?”
4. But before you can speak your thoughts, he acts.
5. He turns back to the coffin, places his hand on it, and says in a loud voice, “Young man, I tell you, get up!”
6. One of the pallbearers objects, “Now just a minute.” But the sentence is interrupted by a sudden movement in the casket.
C. All this sounds like something out of a horror film, doesn’t it? But it’s not. It’s right out of the gospel of Luke chap7.
1. Verses 14 and 15 say: “Then he went up and touched the coffin, and those carrying it stood still. He said, ‘Young man, I say to you, get up!’ The dead man sat up and began to talk, and Jesus gave him back to his mother.”