Summary: The resurrection of Christ makes a powerful difference in the daily lives of every believer.
THE DIFFERENCE THE RESURRECTION MAKES
John 20:8 4/7/96A BBC
Each year at this time, Christians around world gather in services as this to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Yet, when we leave it quite obvious that it makes little difference in our daily lives. To most, if we are really honest, the resurrection is just another fascinating story found within the pages of the Bible. Many do not know the total implications or even the facts of this wonderous event. It’s kind of like this:
A group of four year olds were gathered in a Sunday school class in Chattanooga. The teacher looked at the class and asked this question: "Does anyone know what today is?" A little four-year-old girl held up her hand and said," Yes, today is Palm Sunday." The teacher exclaimed, "That’s fantastic, that’s wonderful. Now does anyone know what next Sunday is?" The same little girl held up her hand and said, "Yes, next Sunday is Easter Sunday." Once again the teacher said, "That’s fantastic. Now, does anyone know what makes next Sunday Easter?" The same little girl responded and said, "Yes, next Sunday is Easter because Jesus rose from the grave" and before the teacher could congratulate her, she kept on talking and said, "but if he sees his shadow -- he has to go back in for seven weeks."
Yet, the resurrection is more than just a story. It is the central doctrine of the Christian faith which totally changes a believers life even as it did the first disciples.
I. ENTRENCHES OUR FAITH (John 20:8)
Then the other disciple, who came to the tomb first, went in also; and he saw and believed.
A. Proves that Jesus is Who He Claimed to Be
B. Proves that Jesus Can Do What He Said He Can Do
II. ENLIGHTENS OUR UNDERSTANDING (John 20:9)
For as yet they did not know(understand) the Scripture, that He must rise again from the dead.
(John 2:22) Therefore, when He had risen from the dead, His disciples remembered that He had said this to them; and they believed the Scripture and the word which Jesus had said.
A. Teaches Me About the Work of My Savior
B. Teaches Me About My New Life in Christ
(Rom 6:4) Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
III. EASES OUR FEARS (20:19-21)
A. Fear of Persecution
B. Fear of Suffering
C. Fear of Death
IV. EMPOWERS OUR WALK
(Phil 3:10) that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection..
(Phillip Brooks) The great Easter truth is not that we are to live newly after death -- that is not the great thing -- but that we are to live here and now by the power of the resurrection; not so much that we are to live forever as that we are to, and may, live nobly now because we are to live forever.
A. Power over Sin
(Rom 6:8-11) Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, 9 knowing that Christ, having een raised from the dead, dies no more. Death no longer has dominion over Him. 10 For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God. 11 Likewise you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
B. Power over Circumstances
(Phil 4:13) I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
V. ESTABLISHES OUR HOPE
A. Hope of Everlasting Life
(John 11:25) Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live.
B. Hope of a Resurrected Body
(1 Cor 15:50-54) Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does corruption inherit incorruption. 51Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed--52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 54 So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: "Death is swallowed up in victory."
C. Hope of Seeing My Loved Ones Again
All these questions have the same answer.
- What is it that gives a widow courage as she stands beside a fresh grave?