A. As Jesus made His triumphant entry into the city of Jerusalem, fulfilling prophecy (Zech. 9:9), people lined the road to praise God and wave palm branches in front of Him.
B. Because of this, some of the Pharisees asked Jesus to rebuke His disciples.
C. Jesus responded by saying, "I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the STONES would immediately CRY OUT!"
D. Only days later, Jesus was arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane, and His disciples "all forsook Him and fled."
E. There was a mock trial as Jesus was taken to Annas, Caiphas, Pilate, Herod, and back again to Pilate.
F. During this time, not one word was given in support of Him.
G. Then, at 9:00am on the next morning, the time of the morning sacrifice, Jesus was nailed to a cross.
H. After only six hours, at 3:00pm, the time of the evening sacrifice Jesus "bowed His head" and gave up the Ghost - No MAN took His life from Him - He laid it down.
I. In Luke 19, Jesus had spoken IF His disciples should hold their peace, the STONES would immediately CRY OUT!
J. Let us look this morning a one stone in particular that did so - I have entitled this Easter Message - "Let the Stone Cry Out!"
K. The Stone that I am referring to is the Stone Placed at the Entrance of Tomb of Jesus.
L. Read Matt. 27:57-28:7
M. There are many Lessons We Can Learn from this Stone.
N. Let Us Look At Four (4) This Easter Morning:
1. The Significance of the Stone in Place
2. The Security of the Stone in Place
3. The Significance of the Removal of the Stone
4. The Sight Provided by the Removal of the Stone
II. The Significance of the Stone in Place (Matt. 27:57-60)
A. The STONE represented a "barrier between the Living & Dead.
B. The Stone symbolized and signified that Jesus had Died - He had fulfilled all that He came to earth to do - "to give His life a ransom for all."
C. God’s Word is clear on the purpose and intent of Jesus Christ coming into this world - 1 Tim. 1:15 - "Christ Jesus came into the world to SAVE Sinners."
D. There is no greater love in the universe than this - "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for a friend."
E. The Stone supported that Jesus "Died for our sins according to the Scriptures and that He was Buried…."
F. Isa. 53:9 - "And He made His grave with the wicked, and with the rich in His death; because He had done no violence, neither was any deceit in His mouth."
G. Yes, Jesus had died as He said would; He did not faint or swoon, as some apostates would have us believe - He DIED just exactly as the Scriptures foretold.
III. The Security of the Stone in Place (Matt. 27:62-66)
A. The enemies of Jesus were just as afraid of Him after His death as when He was alive.
B. They besought Pilate that they might somehow ensure that the body of Jesus be guarded, lest some of His disciples steal it away.
C. Pilate said, "Make it as SURE as ye can!"
D. They did so by "Setting a Watch of soldiers" to guard The Stone which was placed in front of the sepulchre.
E. They also made The Stone secure by "Sealing" it. This was done by placing a cord across the entire stone and sealing it with clay at each end.
F. Little did these Pharisees know that they were giving support to the evidence that Jesus truly rose from the grave.
G. A Roman soldier knew that to fall asleep on duty or to fail to fulfill his task meant certain death. They were quite professional in their duties.
H. The only way that the tomb COULD BE EMPTY would be for Jesus TO Rise from the Dead!
I. The Pharisees failed to realize that no rock, seal, guard, or army could prevent the Son of God from rising from the dead.
IV. The Significance of the Removal of the Stone (Matt. 28:1-4)
A. The Stone was ROLLED AWAY!
B. The earth began to quake on that first day of the week, as the angel of the Lord descended from heaven and rolled The Stone away from the door of the sepulchre.
C. Those that guarded the tomb of Christ became fearful, shook, and fell down as dead men.
D. My friend, "Whenever YOU see the Power of Almighty God, you cannot help by fall down before Him as a dead man!!!"
E. Notice that the "angel SAT upon The Stone". There is also significance in this as well.