Summary: Sunday happenings are very important. Resurrection Sunday happenings are extremely important!
INTRO.- ILL.- A man by the name of George Hatch raised a large family of seven boys and five girls in the sand hills of northwestern Nebraska. One Sunday morning a neighbor rushed over to help the Hatches get the new-mown hay into the barn; clouds were rolling up in the West, and it was quite apparent that a rainstorm was coming.
"Let’s get your hay up before the storm hits!" exclaimed the neighbor. "Thank you for your kind offer," said Mr. Hatch, "but this is Sunday, and I am going to take my family to church." "But you’ll lose your hay," pleaded the neighbor.
But the Hatch family went to church, and the rainstorm did spoil the hay. "See, I told you that you would lose your hay," said the neighbor. "Yes," replied Mr. Hatch, "I lost my hay, but I saved my family."
ILL.- Back in 1850 people could not ride on the Boston and Maine railroads on Sunday unless they satisfied the railroad officials they were making the trip to attend church services.
And when the New York elevated line began operating, many citizens boycotted it because trains were run on Sundays. Why did they boycott it? BECAUSE THEY BELIEVED IN GOING TO CHURCH ON SUNDAY!
Sunday happenings back then. Sunday School. Church. Observance of the Lord’s Supper. The singing of gospel hymns. People confessing Christ and being baptized into Him. Bible study groups. Christian service. Youth meetings.
These are the kinds of Sunday happenings that all Christians should believe in, participate in and be excited about! Sunday happenings are important. They help to shape our lives in a good and godly way.
ILL.- William Gladstone who was Britain’s Prime Minister four times said, "Tell me what the young men of England are doing on Sunday, and I will tell you what the future of England will be."
Sunday happenings not only help to shape up our lives, but also our country. Sunday happenings are important!
PROP.- From our text about the resurrection of Christ let’s consider some Sunday happenings, some resurrection Sunday happenings.
1- The stone rolled (2)
2- The guards feared (4)
3- The women ran (8)
4- The Savior appeared (9)
I. THE STONE ROLLED
I’ve never rolled any stones, but I’ve sure thrown a few in my time.
ILL.- Once, while in elementary school, I got sent to the principal’s office for throwing rocks at another boy during school hours. BUT HE WAS THROWING ROCKS AT ME TOO! And I figured that one good stone deserved another.
That’s often the way we think, but that doesn’t make it right.
Rom. 12: 17-18 "Do not repay another evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone."
Don’t throw stones at people just because they throw them at you. Make peace, not problems. Make love, not war. Love people, don’t fight with them. God put us here to love one another. Work at it.
While we may throw stones, God rolls stones. And He rolls the right stones, in the right direction and at the right time.
V. 2 "There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it."
God rolled away the stone from the tomb of Jesus. That stone was a wheel of granite, eight feet in diameter and one foot thick. It was rolled into a groove and perhaps weighed more than 4 tons which is over 8,000 lbs.
When God rolls stones He does a really good job of it. And just as He rolled away that stone, He can also roll away the stones in our lives.
Max Lucado wrote, "The stone was moved - not for Jesus - but for the women. Not so Jesus could come out, but so the women could see in."
Our God is a god of surprises. About the time we think nothing is going to happen, God surprises us. And it’s generally, a nice surprise. He rolls the stone away so we can see, behold, and rejoice!
ILL.- Just when Sarah’s womb was too old for babies, she got pregnant. Of course, I don’t know of many women that want that kind of surprise from God!
- Just when our sin is too great for grace, God pardons David the adulterer. That’s a good surprise that we all can handle!
All of us need certain stones rolled away in our lives. Stones of doubt, stones of fear, stones of uneasiness, stones of distress, etc.
All of us have needs in our lives. Needs that perhaps can only be taken care or met by our all-powerful God. There are times when it seems like we have done everything humanly possible to solve our problem and then we just have to "let go and let God."