Summary: Sermon for Resurrection Sunday that explains why the resurrection is so important.
The Reality of the Resurrection
By Kenny McKinley
Text: Multiple Scriptures
(Read Matt. 28:5-6)
Christianity stands or falls on the reality of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Without the resurrection Christianity would be no different than any other religion. Oh sure there would be differences in some of the moral teachings, and sure there would be differences in some of the rituals. But the resurrection is what separates Christianity from every other world religion out there. This morning I’m just going to touch on a few points as time permits. It would take several days to do an exhaustive sermon on the resurrection and what it means for us, but at least this morning I can offer a few key points.
So why is the resurrection so important?
Turn with me to Romans 1:4 (read). Jesus was declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the Spirit of holiness, By the resurrection from the dead.
The Bible is a series of events that were recorded either as they happened or shortly after they happened. That Scripture we just read says that Jesus was declared to be who He said He was, and the proof is in the resurrection. Several Scriptures prove this point, like Matt. 22:32, and Luke 20:38, and 1st Cor. 15:20:26, lets go ahead and turn to that passage in First Corinthians (read). See if Christ is not risen from the dead, the long course of God’s redemptive plan to save His people ends in a dead end street, in a tomb. If the resurrection of Christ is not a reality, then we have no assurance that God is the living God, we would have no assurances that we are even saved at all. Our faith would be futile because the object of our faith had not validated Himself as the Lord. But if Christ is raised from the dead then we can know that God is sovereign over all things, even death. The resurrection also proves that Jesus was who He said He was, because it fulfills the predictions He Himself made about the resurrection. Again we could look at several texts that speak of this, Matt. 17:9, Luke 24:46, but I want you to look at John 2:19-22 (read); now turn with me back to 1st Corinthians 15 and look at verse 4 (read). If Jesus Christ is not raised from the dead then He was a liar, and if Jesus was a liar, then His death did not pay for our sins. If Jesus was a liar, what kind of man would that make Him? C.S. Lewis said that for someone to make the claims that Jesus made, and not fulfill them he would have to either be a liar like the world has never seen, a lunatic, or the devil himself. You know it amazes me that there are some people who think that Jesus was just a moral philosopher but not God in the flesh. What kind of person would follow a person who claimed to be God, who claimed to able to do the things that Jesus claimed, and who claimed to be able to rise from the grave, and not believe the miraculous claims?
So the reality of the resurrection is important because it shows us that our faith is placed on a sure foundation, on God Himself. The resurrection shows us that Jesus was indeed who He said He was; that He wasn’t just some crazy man running around Israel.
The reality of the resurrection is also important because it shows us that God the Father has accepted the sacrifice of His Son, for the reconciliation of man.
Turn with me to Romans chapter 4:16-25 (read).
Jesus Christ bore the legal penalty for us on the cross. He suffered and died in order to pay the penalty that we owed; to pay for the sins that we committed. But when He was raised from the dead that shows us that God saw His Son’s suffering and death as a sufficient and effective offering for our sins. Turn with me to John 19:30 (read). From the cross Jesus said, “It is finished.” That is the Greek word tetelestai. It was a word that Roman generals used to proclaim that the victory in battle had been won. It was also a word that was used at the market. It would be written across a bill to indicate that the bill had been paid in full. The resurrection is the receipt that God gave humanity, that Jesus’ death paid the full price for our sins. Our forgiveness was not cheap. It cost Jesus His blood, and His life. He paid for it on the cross. But because of the resurrection, there should not be a lingering guilt for our sin. Some of us have done some pretty bad things in our lives. But the empty tomb means that your sins and mine can be forgiven, if we are in Christ. The Bible tells us that just as Abraham had faith and it was accounted to him as righteousness, if we too have faith in God, His righteousness shall be placed on our account, and we become the righteousness of God in Christ.