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Summary: Resurrection came. The tomb is empty! Jesus is alive! Resurrection came to people who were at the end of their rope.

This message is an edited version of a sermon given at Loving God Fellowship. Copyright © 2008 Loving God Fellowship, Inc. http://www.LovingGodFellowship.org . Click to have messages emailed to you as they are made available. You are encouraged to share this message with those you know that are hungry for God’s Word.

Resurrection Came

By Pastor Greg Johnson

John 20:1-18

It was a Sunday morning. Jesus had suffered a violent death at the hands of man on Friday. All hope had left His followers. They had left their occupations, homes and families to follow Him anticipating Him setting up His Kingdom. But now He was dead. What would they do? If they were recognized as one of His followers, would they also embrace His fate? Dreams were shattered. Possibilities were lost. Hope was gone.

(John 20:1-18 NIV) "Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance. {2} So she came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, "They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put him!" {3} So Peter and the other disciple started for the tomb. {4} Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. {5} He bent over and looked in at the strips of linen lying there but did not go in. {6} Then Simon Peter, who was behind him, arrived and went into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, {7} as well as the burial cloth that had been around Jesus’ head. The cloth was folded up by itself, separate from the linen. {8} Finally the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw and believed. {9} (They still did not understand from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead.) {10} Then the disciples went back to their homes, {11} but Mary stood outside the tomb crying. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb {12} and saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus’ body had been, one at the head and the other at the foot. {13} They asked her, "Woman, why are you crying?" "They have taken my Lord away," she said, "and I don’t know where they have put him." {14} At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus. {15} "Woman," he said, "why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?" Thinking he was the gardener, she said, "Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him." {16} Jesus said to her, "Mary." She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, "Rabboni!" (which means Teacher). {17} Jesus said, "Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet returned to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ’I am returning to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’" {18} Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: "I have seen the Lord!" And she told them that he had said these things to her."

Resurrection came. The tomb is empty! Jesus is alive! Resurrection came to people who were at the end of their rope.

Easter 2008 is here and there are people all around that are at the end of their rope. People in America that were taken advantage of by greedy financers are losing their homes in record numbers while the government that they pay taxes to is more concerned about bailing out the banks than they are the one’s suffering foreclosure. America has been at war in Iraq for five years. I thank God for young men and women that love their country and serve it well. The war is costing billions of dollars a month, but more than that, it has cost 4,000 young American lives while leaving 30,000 American troops wounded and scarred for life. Ben Laden is still on the loose and Al Qaeda has grown. New Orleans is still in disarray. The economy is in recession. Students can’t get loans for education. Gas prices and health care costs are at all time highs while our senior citizens live on incomes that are fixed. Many are at the end of their rope.

The world is a mess. There is genocide and ethnic conflict. There is poverty and disease. Three billion people live on less than two dollars a day and 35,000 children under the age of five die daily from preventable disease mostly caused by unsafe drinking water. Many are at the end of their rope.

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