Summary: The timid and fearful Apostles after seeing the Resurrected Christ and were filled with the Holy Spirit shared the message of the Risen Christ fervently and fearlessly! Are we living victoriously for Christ? Like Paul do we still want to know Christ?
Cornerstone Church Easter Sunday 4.20.14
“The Resurrection – What Now?”
“It was the worst of times
and going to be the best of times!”
The early band of Followers (Christians) were devastated on Friday.
The one they thought was:
* The Messiah
* The Savior!
* Son of God
* Son of David
* Son of Man
Crucified = beaten, stricken, mocked, pulverized beyond all recognition.
Then nailed to a cross to die hanging between heaven and earth!
Hope snuffed out like a candle!
* Peter denied the Lord the night before (weighted down by guilt)!
* Disciples are scattered (some hiding in the shadows).
* The ones who loved him greatly got permission to prepare the Body for burial and bury Jesus.
* The authorities seal and guard the tomb!
The Sabbath Begins!
THE RESURRECTION – DOUBTED
Example: Look at Mary Magdalene
John 20:13 NIV They (the Angeles) asked her, “Woman, why are you crying?” “They have taken my Lord away,” she said, “and I don’t know where they have put him.”
The Sabbath – Saturday the silence remained!
Jesus is dead! There is no doubt here! The Romans made sure he was dead!
Jesus is in the Tomb – stone covered the entrance!
* Wrapped for Burial
* His body is icy cold!
* Blood congealed!
* Rigor mortis fully set in!
Even though the Believers doubted the officials were not going to take chances!
The religious leaders listened to what Jesus said, but their dark hearts keep them from believing He was the Messiah!
“…the chief priests and the Pharisees went to Pilate. “Sir,” they said, “we remember that while he was still alive that deceiver said, ‘After three days I will rise again.’ So give the order for the tomb to be made secure until the third day. Otherwise, his disciples may come and steal the body and tell the people that he has been raised from the dead. This last deception will be worse than the first.”
“Take a guard,” Pilate answered. “Go, make the tomb as secure as you know how.” So they went and made the tomb secure by putting a seal on the stone and posting the guard. Matthew 27:62b-66
The Sabbath (Saturday) ended and darkness returns!
Everything is about to change!
THE RESURRECTION – BELIEVED
Jesus dead Body was resurrected!
* Imagine the power it took to bring someone to life that was dead going on three days!
* Jesus - God the Son had raised others from the dead including Lazarus after four days!
* Jesus is Risen!
o This is the real deal!
o Do not diminish the Glory of God the SON by some cheap dime store theory that in the coolness of the tomb Jesus regained consciousness and everyone only thought He was dead!
o He was dead: Romans, Religious Leaders, Jews, followers knew it!
I imagine it as this song declares:
“There in the ground His body lay
Light of the world by darkness slain:
Then bursting forth in glorious Day
Up from the grave he rose again!”
“In Christ Alone”
Words and Music by Keith Getty and Stuart Townend
Power greater than all of the energy and matter needed when God spoke to bring the Universe into existence raised Jesus to life!
The Big Bang was a mere firecracker next to Resurrection Power!
The Tomb was not opened to let Jesus out but to let people in to see it was empty!
Matt. 28:2-4 NIV There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. The guards were so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men.
Joy filled the hearts of the Believers as they encountered the Risen Christ!
The message spread as they announced “He is Risen, just as He said” to other believers!
Matt. 28:8-10 NIV So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his disciples. Suddenly Jesus met them. “Greetings,” he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him. Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me.”
Before His Ascension back to His Father Jesus appeared to nearly 600 Followers.
1Cor. 15:3-7 NIV For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Peter, and then to the Twelve. After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles, and last of all he appeared to me also, as to one abnormally born.