Summary: This sermon gives three things taht are significant about the Resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It shows that in order to live, you must first die, death is not the end and what happens after death matters.
Significance of the Resurrection
Today is the day that we celebrate an event that happened over 2000 years ago. Friday evening started the Israelites Passover. Passover was a reminder to the nation of Israel of their great deliverance from the bondage of Egypt. God worked a miracle in their lives that day and they are to remember that miracle in the Passover.
Today, as the Israelites celbrated their time of deliverance, we celebrate or may I say remember a miracle (our deliverance if you will) that happened on the first day of the week over 2000 years ago. It was a day that turned the world upside down.
In our text this morning, something happened that has never happened before. Someone rose themselves from the dead. I want to stop right there and explain that. We have accounts in Scripture of others rising from the dead. There was a man by the name of Jairus who had a daughter that died. Jesus intervened and she lived again. And of course we know the account of Lazarus in the book of Luke that died and Jesus said those famous words for all to hear, “Lazarus, come forth.”
What was so different about those “resurrections” compared to the one that we are talking about this morning? Jesus is the difference. It was Jesus that raised those two. They didn’t do it under their own power. When Jesus was resurrected, He did it under His own power. You see, He is God. Jairus’ daughter and Lazarus had no power of their own they could use. Jesus had the power to raise them, He had the power to raise Himself and He has the power to raise us up as well.
So what did happen on that first day of the week that should stand out in our minds? That should cause us to pay attention to? That’s what I want to talk about this morning. The significance of the resurrection.
The first thing we need to see is…
I. In order to live, you must first die
I mentioned earlier that Jesus had the power to raise Himself from the dead. He also had the power to take His life. I want you to understand something. Jesus did not commit suicide. What is suicide? Suicide is the taking of ones own life. There is a difference (and I mean a big difference) between those who commit suicide and the death of Jesus. And I believe the big difference is found in John 3:16. Many can quote that verse and if you can lets do it now. The key word that I want to look at is the word gave. When someone commits suicide, more times than not, it is for selfish reasons. I don’t want to sound harsh this morning and that is not my intent. But if you were to look into your heart and be reasonable about it, people commit suicide because of selfish reasons. Maybe they did it because they couldn’t handle the situation they were in and thought it easier to remove themselves from that situation. Notice the words we use when someone commits suicide. What do we say? They took their lives.
When Jesus died, He what? He gave His life. There is a difference in taking and giving. Jesus gave His life as a ransom. Both Matthew and Mark tell us in Matthew 20:28 Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.
Let’s look at what Jesus said in John 10:17-18.
He is letting the people know that the Son of man has power to not only lay His life down, but more importantly the power to take it again, or in other words, to raise Himself up. We do have the power if you will to give our lives. I was talking to Connie and Ellen about this at supper yesterday. Ellen brought up a good point. How about a soldier that throws himself on a live grenade. He/she did that to save the lives of their fellow soldiers. To me that is an example of giving your life so that others might live. Or I would jump in front of a bullet so that my wife, or my children could live. Just like Jesus did. He gave His life so that we might live. The only difference though, those that gave their lives for others do not have the power to raise themselves from the dead. Jesus did just that.
Now I said that in order to live you must first die. How does that apply to us today? It is kind of like a seed that is planted. Did you know that when you plant that seed, it actually dies? That seed is useless unless it is planted and then dies.