Summary: The resurrection is more than just an historical event.
My wife keeps telling me I’m losing my hearing. Some husbands call it “selective hearing.” An older couple was sitting outside in their rocking chairs one afternoon. She looked at her husband of 60 years and said, “I’m proud of you.” He turned to her and said, “I’m tired of you, too.” She said, “Thanks!” She looked around at the trees moving and said, “It’s windy today.” He said, “No it’s not. It’s Thursday.” She said, “Me too, I’ll go get us some lemonade!”
Hopefully we won’t be hard of hearing when it comes to listening to God’s Word. Today we come to the final message in the series from Mark I have called The reMARKable Power of Jesus. Mark is the action-packed gospel with more miracles per chapter than the other Gospels.
Over the next few weeks I’m going to bracket our “I Love America” celebration with two messages entitled “Blessed is the Nation Whose God is the Lord.” Then, God willing, starting July 10, we’ll begin a verse-by-verse study of Hebrews entitled “Eyes on Jesus.”
Now before we get into Mark 16 most of your Bibles have a footnote or a heading that mentions that some of these verses don’t appear in the earliest Greek manuscripts. You may be thinking, “What’s up with that?” There are over 5,600 Greek manuscripts of the New Testament. It is, by far, the most validated ancient document. For instance, compare that to the number of manuscripts from Plato; there are 7. I love the King James Version of the Bible. I grew up reading it and memorizing it. But when it was translated in 1611, the earliest and most complete Greek manuscripts hadn’t been discovered. So are these verses supposed to be in the Bible? I agree with one of my Southern Baptist heroes, Dr. Herschel Hobbs who wrote: “Even if one rejects this ending, one does not lose the basic teaching of scripture that is contained in it. For all of these teachings are found elsewhere in the other three Gospels and in the book of Acts.”
Mark 16:1-20. “When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go to anoint Jesus’ body. Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb and they asked each other, ‘Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?’”
“But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away. As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed. ‘Don’t be alarmed,’ he said. ‘You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter, ‘He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.’’ Trembling and bewildered, the women went out and fled from the tomb. They said nothing to anyone, because they were afraid.”
“When Jesus rose early on the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had driven seven demons. She went and told those who had been with him and who were mourning and weeping. When they heard that Jesus was alive and that she had seen him, they did not believe it. Afterward Jesus appeared in a different form to two of them while they were walking in the country. These returned and reported it to the rest; but they did not believe them either.”
“Later Jesus appeared to the Eleven as they were eating; he rebuked them for their lack of faith and their stubborn refusal to believe those who had seen him after he had risen. He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well.’ After the Lord Jesus had spoken to them, he was taken up into heaven and he sat at the right hand of God. Then the disciples went out and preached everywhere, and the Lord worked with them and confirmed his word by the signs that accompanied it.”
Sometimes we make a mistake of only talking about the Resurrection on Easter Sunday. Because the empty tomb was discovered on a Sunday morning, every Sunday should be a resurrection celebration. The title of this message is “He’s Alive! Do you Believe Him?” At first I was going to ask, “Do you believe IT?” But the resurrection is more than just an historical event that you believe IN. Jesus is a risen Savior, and salvation comes by believing in Him.