Summary: Lessons about people in response to the resurrection of Jesus. 1- Some consider Jesus but do not recognize Him 2- Some know scripture but do not believe it
INTRO.- Response to the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the death is like anything else. We see, we hear, we question, and we consider. And we either believe or we do not.
ILL.- It was possibly the most prayed-for event in human history. And it succeeded! On Sunday, July 20, 1969, as hundreds of millions on earth watched over the TV, the first man set foot on the moon. They landed on the southwestern shore of the Sea of Tranquillity. And when Neil Armstrong stepped down on the lunar surface, he remarked: “That’s one small step for man—one giant leap for mankind.”
But did you believe it really happened when they showed it on TV? And do you believe it now?
ILL.- Do you remember where you were on that morning of September 11, 2001, the day of terrorism? I was going to the hospital in Joplin, MO, to get my mother and put her in a nursing home. When I first heard about those terrorist attacks and the explosion of the twin towers, I thought, “This can’t be true!” BUT IT WAS TRUE. We wondered at those pictures on TV and may have thought, “This can’t be happening” but it did. THERE IS NO QUESTION TODAY! Some events are very real even though we may question them, whereas others may not be real and we should question them!
ILL.- Do you remember seeing the illusionist, David Copperfield, make a jet airplane disappear? Did you believe it? I didn’t believe it but I also couldn’t explain it. Copperfield is an illusionist. He creates illusions. It’s not real. But how did he do it if he really didn’t make that plane disappear? I read that there is netting that is used in stage productions that is draped from light to light between the massive spotlights that encircles the plane. So the illusion is performed with a set of lights and netting. How exactly? I don’t know.
While we may not completely understand how a David Copperfield performs his illusions, it’s fascinating, BUT NOT BELIEVABLE. It’s entertaining, but not reality.
But what about the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead? Was this only an illusion or a trick to make people believe in a person who was not real or maybe wasn’t what He claimed to be? Do we believe Him or do we not? Do we believe in His resurrection or do we not?
PROP.- Lessons about people in response to the resurrection of Jesus.
1- Some consider Jesus but do not recognize Him
2- Some know scripture but do not believe it
I. SOME CONSIDER JESUS BUT DO NOT BELIEVE
ILL.- A burglar broke into a home and was looking around. He heard a soft voice say, "Jesus is watching you.” Thinking it was just his imagination, he continued his search. Again the voice said "Jesus is watching you.”
He turned his flashlight around and saw a parrot in a cage. He asked the parrot if he was the one talking and the parrot said, "yes." He asked the parrot what his name was and the parrot said, "Moses." The burglar asked, "what kind of people would name a parrot Moses?" The parrot said, "the same kind of people who would name their pit bull Jesus".
I believe in Jesus but I don’t want to meet a pit bull named Jesus. But there is no question in my mind that Jesus is who He claimed to be: came from heaven and lived on earth over 2000 years ago, performed miracles, raised the dead, fed the multitudes, cast out demons, and died on the cross, bearing our sins in His body so that we might believe Him, trust Him and some day go to heaven! There are many people, however, who only consider Jesus briefly but are kept somehow from believing in Him and trusting Him as their Savior.
13 Now that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem. 14 They were talking with each other about everything that had happened. 15 As they talked and discussed these things with each other, Jesus himself came up and walked along with them; 16 but they were kept from recognizing him.
These two disciples were kept from recognizing Jesus at this particular time as they walked along. They believed but didn’t recognize Jesus at this time. In this incident, Jesus kept them from recognizing Him but in the world today it’s a different story. It’s not Jesus who keeps people from recognizing who He is and what He can do for them. Obviously, Jesus wants people to believe in Him and trust Him for salvation.
ILL.- I read one time that the ex-TV host, Larry King, who is an agnostic, said he would like to interview Jesus and ask him if he really believed he was born of a virgin. I find that somewhat humorous. I would think Larry King would want to ask Jesus something more important, like, “Did you really rise from the dead and is heaven real?” Nevertheless, I guess Larry King is not afraid to consider Jesus even if he doesn’t believe in Him. That’s more than some in Hollywood would do. Many won’t even consider Jesus.