Summary: The Resurrection is either one of the most wicked, heartless, vicious hoaxes ever or it is the most fantastic fact of history. As Paul said in 1 Corinthians 5:17, “If Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless.” This message will focus on three
The Case For Christ: His Resurrection
Rev. Brian Bill
I have a confession to make this morning -- I am an Information Junkie. I read two newspapers a day, listen to talk radio, and often pop in a teaching tape when I’m driving. At the office I read my Bible, memos, mail, e-mail, periodicals, journals, commentaries and books. When I go home I read the mail, and thumb through Newsweek, World and Christianity Today.
This past week I went into a tailspin because my information pipeline shut down for a few hours. I couldn’t receive or send email. Being the patient guy that I am, I immediately called “tech support” and tried to get it figured out. When they started asking me questions I couldn’t answer I went next door and asked Geoff to talk with them. Eventually, I was reconnected to my steady stream of data again.
My life is a frenzy of facts. Beth doesn’t always appreciate this obsession of mine -- in fact, she likes to give me a hard time about it. Sometimes when I come home from the office, she’ll say something like, “Did you hear about such and such?” If I say, “No” she’ll feign shock and surprise and say something like, “What? You mean you don’t know about this? You’re slipping Brian...I know something you don’t know.” After a protracted period of begging on my part, she will usually let me in on this new information so I can add it to my database.
The problem with access to so much information is that I don’t always know what to do with it all. Sometimes information overload can cause confusion.
I heard about a grandfather who wanted to see how much his four-year-old granddaughter knew about the Easter story. He put her on his lap and asked, “Julie, why do we celebrate Easter?” Without hesitating, she said, “Jesus was crucified. After He died, His body was put into a grave. They rolled a big stone in front of the opening. A bunch of soldiers guarded the tomb. On the third day, there was a big earthquake and the stone rolled away.”
Grandpa was pleased with how much his granddaughter knew about the Easter story but then she continued, “When the earthquake happened, the entire town came out by the grave. And if Jesus came out and saw His shadow, they knew there would be six more weeks of winter!” At least she had part of the story right.
This morning I want to distill the overwhelming data about the Resurrection into some bite-size chunks. And, I want to ask you to serve on a jury. Imagine this auditorium as a courtroom and each of you are sitting in the jury box.
In my opening argument I want to help you get the whole story right about what happened on that first Easter. With all the information available in the world today, I will show that most of it is irrelevant and not very useful. Its just data floating around cyberspace. It doesn’t really matter. What does matter supremely is whether or not Jesus rose from the dead. Jesus staked His entire reputation on the Resurrection -- if it didn’t happen, everything that Jesus said and did is open to question.