Summary: The Resurrection is relevant because… 1. …it confirms Jesus’ identity as the Son of God. 2. …it proves there is life after death.
1. Audience will be assured that Jesus did in fact rise from the dead.
2. Audience will be challenged to answer the question “Are you ready for life after death?”
One of my favorite movies of all time is “Planes Trains and Automobiles” featuring Steve Martin and John Candy as strangers whose lives get intertwined trying to get home for Christmas during a snowstorm. There are two really memorable moments for me from this film. One sounds like this (play “pillow.wav” – Where’s your hand? Between two pillows. Those aren’t pillows!)
The other one is a line me and my buddies said to each other over and over throughout high school and college. (Play “point.wav” when you tell a story, have a point! It makes it so much more interesting for the listener!)
Have a point! In today’s hectic world, none of us have time for listening to stories that have no point or for being involved in things that have no point. If it is not relevant, we want to move on to more important things.
We’re here today to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ. But what is the point? But who cares? What difference does it make? I’ve got these kids to care for. I’ve got ends to meet. I’ve got deadlines to beat. I’ve got appointments to keep!
Why is the fact that a Jewish teacher came back to life after being wrongfully put to death RELEVANT today?
I’d like to share with you 2 reasons why I not only consider the resurrection of Jesus Christ RELEVANT for today – but of utmost importance for everyday of your life!
1. The Resurrection is relevant because it confirms Jesus’ identity as the Son of God. (Rom. 1:4)
There are those who are willing to call Jesus a great teacher or a prophet but who are not willing to agree that he actually physically rose from the dead. They say things like “The Resurrection of Jesus Christ happened in the hearts of his followers as they recalled his teachings.” That sounds real nice, doesn’t it?
The problem is, Jesus claimed to be the Son of God. Not only that, he predicted on numerous occasions that he would be put to death and would rise again on the 3rd day.
Perhaps someone with a martyr complex could arrange for their own death by saying the types of things Jesus said which angered the religious establishment of his day. But when you see that he actually predicted his resurrection, he goes beyond what a simple “teacher” or “prophet” had the power to accomplish.
The Jewish authorities understood that he had claimed he would return again, and that’s why they asked Pilate to set a guard around the tomb. This prediction was no secret. That’s why it is so important that it actually happened! Romans 1:4 tells us plainly why the resurrection is relevant.
Romans 1:4 (NIV) [Jesus] was declared with power to be the Son of God by his resurrection from the dead.
He was not just another teacher. He was not simply a prophet sent by God. Every teacher and prophet that has ever lived died and stayed dead. And unless they were crazy they didn’t predict a resurrection.