Summary: A sermon describing why Jesus’ resurrection must be trusted by believers and why it can be trusted by non-believers.
A Sunday School teacher asked her class to write one sentence each on "What Easter Means to Me." One pupil wrote: "Egg salad sandwiches for the next two weeks!"...
For each of us Easter carries a different meaning. Yet in all reality Easter is simply about the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
I. The Problem of the Resurrection (12-19)
a. The Christian is lost (12-14)
If there is no resurrection than everything that represents who we are as Christians is for nothing and we are completely lost without purpose.
Romans 4:24, “but also for us, to whom God will credit righteousness – for us who believe in him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead.”
We MUST believe the resurrection for Christianity to have value!
b. The Christian is a liar (15)
If the resurrection is not true than we are all liars!
c. The Christian is a loser (16-19)
If the resurrection is not true then our time is wasted and we should be pitied.
The life of a believer is a life of sacrifice with hope of eternal reward. If there is no eternal reward than this life as a Christian is miserable!
II. The Purpose of the Resurrection (20-28)
a. Resurrection made possible (20-23)
As a result of Adam’s fall we all have sin. Now as a result of Christ’s resurrection we can all have resurrection as well.
Romans 5:14, “Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who was a pattern of the one to come.”
Regardless of how good, or bad, you are, we’re each condemned because of Adam’s sin. Jesus had to contradict that pattern through His death and resurrection.
b. Death made powerless (24-26)
When death is no longer the end, it no longer has power.
2 Timothy 1:10, “but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and brought light and immortality to light through the gospel.”
God’s good news has defeated the power of death. It no longer has power!
c. God made prominent (27-28)
This is the chief purpose of all things, that God might be glorified.
Romans 11:36, “For everything comes from Him (God); everything exists by His power and is intended for His glory. To Him be glory forevermore. Amen.” (NLT)
III. The Power of the Resurrection (29-34)
a. The ability to save (29)
Baptism isn’t a waste because it represents real change. We can experience salvation through Christ.
Romans 3:22, “This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, for all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by His grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.”
b. The ability to sacrifice (30-33)
We must recognize that as a result of participating in Christ’s resurrection we are now called to sacrifice for Him as well. Our lives must be marked by self-denial.
Mark Dever, in his book, Nine Marks of a Healthy Church, says, “According to [Jonathan] Edwards, while all these things [loving the church, an increase in joy, etc.] may be evidences of true Christian growth, the only certain observable sign of such growth is a life of increasing holiness, rooted in Christian self-denial.”