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Summary: An evangelistic service for Easter Sunday evening- focussing on the Passion of Christ and the Power of the resurrection

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The Power and the Passion. Easter Sunday pm, 11/4/4

Luke 23:44-24;12, 24:36-40

A Sunday School teacher had just finished telling her third graders about how Jesus was crucified and placed in a tomb with a great stone sealing the opening. Then, wanting to share the excitement of the resurrection, she asked: "And what do you think were Jesus¡¦ first words when He came bursting out of that tomb alive?" A hand shot up into the air from the rear of the classroom. Attached to it was the arm of a little girl. Leaping out of her chair she shouted out excitedly "I know, I know!" "Good" said the teacher, "Tell us, what were Jesus first words." And Extending her arms high into the air she said: "TA-DA!"

Contributed by: Ken Kersten on www.sermoncentral.com

PASSION?

But first- before we get to the Power bit- there are some questions that need answering: about the Passion

- ¡§why all that violence?¡¨ ¡§why all the Passion and the pain?¡¨

o ¡§is it just ¡¥life¡¦¡¨. ¡§one of life¡¦s injustices?¡¨

o ¡§maybe it was a mistake?¡¨ Jesus thought His Father would bail Him out- and He was surprised. ¡¥left hanging on the wheel of fate¡¦

o ¡§was it God¡¦s vindictiveness?¡¨ ¡§Is that what was behind all this¡¨

There ARE answers

and no- it wasn¡¦t God¡¦s vindictiveness. THIS (believe it or not) is a demonstration of God¡¦s love

o Illustr: asked one of my friends ¡¥how do you feel that god did that for you?¡¦ ¡¥Well- I don¡¦t think I understand. I don¡¦t think God did. But maybe Jesus did¡¦

„X Explained about Jesus being God in the flesh. When God wanted to visit earth to SHOW us how much He loved us- He came as Jesus

„X Explained- I know God loves me and understands because of Jesus

And it wasn¡¦t a mistake

- the Bible tells us that God the father planned this for a LONG time. From the beginning of the world, actually (Rev 13:8 ¡¥slain from the creation of the world)

o from the moment man went astray¡K

- and Jesus planned and accepted it, too

o film Jn 10:18 No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father."

THIS passion was God¡¦s PLAN to save mankind

- = the only way we could be saved

o film: ¡§father¡K if it is possible¡K let this cup¡¨

- but it couldn¡¦t be done any other way

o ¡§there was no other good enough¡¨

- and Jesus willingly chose the cross (rather than it being thrown on Him)

o Illustr: Film: ¡§Father, I am ready¡¨ before whipping

„X Whole sense of purpose is portrayed well- in Mary, too

You see- our sins¡K wrongdoings¡K

- have separated us from God

- have wrecked our relationship with God (as He is holy)

- Necessitate punishment (we¡¦d agree with that, in principle, for OTHERS, for certain things ¡V but applies across the board)

o In fact- even more Rom 6:23 23 For the wages of sin is death,( but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.)

For 2000 years the Jews understood this (in part)

- that¡¦s what all the animal sacrifices were about

- but were really looking forward to the perfect sacrifice who would come and somehow pay the price, penalty and punishment for our sin

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