Summary: Preached on Easter Sunday, the emphasis is on the results of Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection.

Introduction: Taking a Shortcut

Read Scripture/Pray

Background: Paul is writing to correct false teaching re: the Gospel THE importance of Easter!

Purpose Statement: Because of Christ’s death & resurrection…

I. Victory of Death is Removed

A. Spiritual

1. We are more than physical creatures

2. Separation from a Holy God

3. Mohammed vs. Christ Illustration

B. Physical

1. This flesh is corrupted

2. Dead Cat Illustration

3. Death ceases to be an end, but a new beginning

C. The only way for Death to win now is for us to do nothing

1. We’ve been charged to take this message to others

II. Sting of Death is Defeated

A. Hope

1. Eternal Life is a certainty

2. Van Pelt Household Illustration

3. We can see our loved ones again

B. Fear

1. We fear what we do not know

2. Any separation is just temporary

3. Churchill Illustration

C. The only sting that death can have is death without Christ

1. Bee sting Illustration

2. Physical Death is not the worst death – 2nd death

III. The Power of Sin is Defeated

A. The Power of Sin in our life

1. Before the Cross we could little expect otherwise than to fall to sin’s temptations

2. Baptism Washes away sin illustration

3. Through Christ’s conquering of death we are more than conquerors

B. The Power of Sin in the Law

1. The Law of God convicts us of our sin

2. Football player illustration

3. Only Christ can save us from this vicious cycle

C. Throw off the chains

1. Raccoons Illustration

2. Give over your sin to Christ TODAY!

Conclusion: Let this Easter Sunday be a Resurrection Sunday in your life

Taking a Shortcut Illustration

A man often walked through a cemetery on his way home. One night, though, unaware that a new grave had been dug in his path, he tumbled in. For some time he struggled to get out of the 7 foot deep grave, but finally gave up and settled down for the night.

An hour later, a farmer out possum hunting came walking through the cemetery and he too fell into the grave. He began a desperate attempt to get out, unaware that there was anyone else in the grave. The first man listened to him for a few minutes, then reached over in the pitch darkness and laid a hand on his shoulder. "You can’t get out of here," he said... but he did.

Mohammed vs. Christ Illustration

In the villages of Northern India a missionary was preaching in a bazaar. As he closed, a Muslim gentleman came up and said, "You must admit we have one thing you have not, and it is better than anything you have."

The missionary smiled and said, "I should be pleased to hear what it is."

The Muslim said, "You know when we go to Mecca we at least find a coffin. But when you Christians go to Jerusalem, which is your Mecca, you find nothing but an empty grave."

But the missionary just smiled and said, "That is just the difference. Mohammed is dead; Mohammed is in the coffin.

Dead Cat Illustration

Our neighbor’s cat was run over by a car, and the mother quickly disposed of the remains before her four-year-old son Billy found out about it. After a few days, though, Billy finally asked about the cat.”

Billy, the cat died,” his mother explained. “But it’s all right. He’s up in heaven with God.”

The boy asked, “What in the world would God want with a dead cat?”

Van Pelt Household Illustration

Lucy and Linus were sitting in front of the television set when Lucy said to Linus, "Go get me a glass of water."

Linus looked surprised, "Why should I do anything for you? You never do anything for me."

"On you 75th birthday," Lucy promised, "I’ll bake you a cake."

Linus got up, headed to the kitchen and said, "Life is more pleasant when you have something to look forward to."

Churchill Illustration

Winston Churchill arranged his own funeral. There were stately hymns in St. Paul’s Cathedral and an impressive liturgy. But at the end of the service, Churchill had an unusual event planned. When they said the benediction, a bugler high in the dome of St. Paul’s Cathedral on one side played Taps, the universal signal that the day is over. There was a long pause. Then a bugler on the other side played Reveille, the military wake-up call.

Bee Sting of Death Illustration

While walking in the field one day with my two young sons, a bee from one of my hives made a beeline for the elder boy and stung him just above the eye. He quickly brushed it away and threw himself in the grass, kicking and screaming for help. The bee went straight for the younger son and began buzzing around his head. The next thing I knew he too was lying in the grass, yelling at the top of his lungs. But I picked him up and told him to stop crying. “That bee is harmless,” I assured him. “It can’t hurt you. It has lost its sting.” I took the frightened lad over to his elder brother, showed him the little black stinger in his brow, and said, “The bee can still scare you, but it is powerless to hurt you. Your brother took the sting away by being stung.” Then I explained 1 Corinthians 15:56 by telling them that the sting of death is sin. But our Elder Brother the Lord Jesus hung on the cross and took the sting out of death by dying in our place. Since the law demands satisfaction only once, death is powerless to hurt us if we accept the work of Christ in our behalf. The unbeliever is filled with fear because he must face God with his sin. But for us, death’s sting is gone; it was left in Jesus. Death may still buzz around and scare us at time, but it can no longer harm us.

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