Summary: An Easter sermon.
A. INTRODUCTION: MATTHEW 27:57-28:2, 11-15
1. What is the natural response to a corpse?
"He (Joseph) went to Pilate and begged the body" (27:58). "He wrapped it in a clean linen cloth" (27:59). "Laid it in his own tomb" (27:60). "The women . . . stood afar off . . . beholding" (Luke 23:49). We attach deep respect to a dead body.
2. What do we do with a corpse?
"Laid it in . . . tomb, which he had hewn out" (27:60). "He rolled a great stone to the door" (27:60). We put a dead body out of sight.
3. What do we do about the gravesite?
"There was Mary Magdalene, and the other Mary, sitting over against the sepulchre" (27:61). "Very early in the morning the first day of the week they came to the sepulcher" (Mark 16:2). We visit it because of
(c) respect, and
4. How much should we spend on a funeral?
"Wrapped it in . . . linen" (27:59). "His own new tomb, which he had hewn out" (27:60). "Nicodemus . . . brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about a hundred pound weight (75 lbs.)" (John 19:39). "They (the women) brought spices which they had prepared" (Luke 24:1). According to our income, love, and ability.
5. How much did the enemies hate Jesus?
(a) "Many bare false witness against him" (Mark 14:56). They lied.
(b) "Judas . . . repented himself, and brought the thirty pieces to the chief priests" (27:3). They covered up.
(c) "They cried out, away with him, crucify him" (John 19:15). They demanded punishment.
(d) "Command . . . that the sepulchre be made sure . . . but his enemies . . . steal his body" (27:64). They used governmental authority.
(e) "They gave large money to the soldiers . . . say ye, his disciples came by night and stole the body" (28:11,13). They concealed the truth.
6. How did they try to hold Jesus in the grave?
(a) "The Pharisees came to Pilate . . . we remember the deceiver said, . . . command that the sepulchre be made sure" (27:62,65). Schemed.
(b) "Ye have a watch; make it as sure as ye can" (27:65). Guarded.
(c) "Made the sepulchre sure, sealing the stone" (27:64). Roman authority.
7. What happened on the Sabbath (Saturday)?
(a)"They (women) . . . prepared spices and ointments; and rested the sabbath day according to the commandment" (Luke 23:56). The women waited.
(b) "They (women) said among themselves, who shall roll us away the stone?" (Mark 16:3). They worried about details.
(c) "All the disciples forsook Him, and fled" (Matt. 26:56). The Disciples hid.
(d) "Now that He ascended, what is it but that He also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?" (Eph. 4:9). Jesus descended into Hell.
(e) "By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison" (I Peter 3:19). Jesus announced His victory
(f) "He led captivity captive" (Eph. 3:8). Jesus took Old Testament saints to Heaven.
8. What happen early Sunday morning?
(a) "The angel of the Lord descended . . . rolled back the stone from the door and set upon it" (28:2) The tomb was opened
(b) "The keepers did shake and became dead men" The soldiers fainted. (28:4).