Summary: How Easter changed everything.... for good, for ever.
Never The Same Again
1 Corinthians 15: 51-57
CALVIN CHRISTIAN REFORMED CHURCH
"You know, things have never been the same since."
Ever heard words like that?
Perhaps you said them.
After the heart attack.
When your parents died.
When your first child was born.
These are life defining moments.
Quickly now, in your own mind - what would you list as two of the top life defining moments in your experience?
Each of us has them, somewhere along the way.
We get them, greater and lesser moments. You could, I suppose, probably graph some of them. Give it a measuring definition - "Life Defining Quotient" or some such title.
Plot it along an XY axis.
Some would go this high. Others higher. Or lower.
But one event - it scores way off the chart.
Blistering in power.
So enormous that it impacts every single life on earth.
There is no one who will not, somewhere along the way not confront this event.
The Resurrection of Jesus Christ from the tomb.
You know - things have never been the same since.
Never has creation seen anything like it.
This is no mere resuscitation - like Lazarus, who would have to surrender to death’s claim again.
This is someone come back to life....... to stay.
Death has no further say in the matter.
The prophet Isaiah proclaims, Isaiah 43:18
"Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See I am doing a new thing!"
I don’t know about you, but I am pretty much jaded to the word "New" when I meet it today.
How often don’t you see "new and improved"?
Marketers expect us to run out to buy it.
And expect us to rush out and buy the even newer version next week.
Well, here’s one "new" where the shine will never wear off!
Hence our celebration.
Hence the festival of this evening, allowing us to sing at the top of our lungs hymns old and new - faith words of the centuries giving expression to hope and truth that reality has been changed forever.
It’ll never be the same again.
The resurrection of Jesus is the first fruit of what God will be yet bringing - a totally new heaven and earth.
Hear Isaiah again: (65:17-19)
17 ¶ "Behold, I will create new heavens and a new earth. The former things will not be remembered, nor will they come to mind.
18 But be glad and rejoice forever in what I will create, for I will create Jerusalem to be a delight and its people a joy.
19 I will rejoice over Jerusalem and take delight in my people; the sound of weeping and of crying will be heard in it no more.
All that which causes decay,
All that which causes heartache and heart break
All that which shatters what we put together, tears down what we build up
All that which stains and destroys life
......all that will go, banished to hell forever.
Because Jesus has begun the irreversable movement towards something totally new.
Remember the grave clothes that bound Jesus. Dropped in their place.
And the stone. Pushed aside and forgotten.
Jesus has carved a path from earth to heaven, from our home to the home of God. He places into the hand of every believer the right to travel that path. And He provides the Holy Spirit to be our guide, ensuring that we make it safely to the end of that path.