Summary: The Final sermon in a series going through all Christ endured leading up to the Cross. The series ends Easter Sunday with the Glorious Resurrection
Parts of this outline is from Steve Malone (Sermon Central)
Today we gather together to celebrate the greatest day in human history- the resurrection of Jesus. For the last three months we have been looking at what the crowd did to our Lord and Savior. Christ was crucified on the cross. He gave His life as a sacrifice and a ransom for many.
Now early Sunday morning several women were on the way to the tomb where he lay. The followers of Christ had seen it all. They had seen Him tied to a post a Roman scourge filled with broken pieces of pottery, glass and bones ripping across His back. As they recalled the purple robe -- the beatings, the cruel mocking and the crown of thorns, the tears began to flow again.
they had seen Jesus, their teacher, their friend, their Lord they had witnessed everything that Jesus went through...Now once again, their lives were about to change.
Read Matt. 28:1-10
That morning the women saw that the Stone was rolled away. Jesus did not need the stone rolled away for Him to leave. The stone was rolled away that morning so that all could see that the tomb was empty. What does that mean for us?
I. THE EMPTY TOMB MEANS THAT JESUS IS ALIVE!!
V. 6 “He is not here, for He has arisen.” Jesus is alive-not hidden, stolen, He is ALIVE.
The resurrection of Jesus is the foundation of Christianity Paul writes in I Corinthians 15:7, "AND IF CHRIST HAS NOT BEEN RAISED, YOUR FAITH IS FUTILE AND YOU ARE STILL IN YOUR
SINS..." the truth is that Christ is alive. Without His resurrection we have no reason to believe God. Every Word of God has been fulfilled! God’s Word is fully truth!
John in his gospel says that he is a witness to the res. His witness is true, for he has seen with his own eyes- he gives testimony to the fact that it has occurred.
There are many that claim the res. did not happen. In fact the chief priests paid the soldiers to say that the disciples stole the body. Of course the body of Jesus was never found. Other theories have been proposed over the years as to why the tomb is empty, all of which are weak and far fetched. And each one requires that the disciples be part of a cover up as they promoted and preached a lie.
Charles Colson, the former counsel of President Nixon, convicted conspirator in the watergate scandal, writes that the Watergate cover up convinced him that Jesus was raised from the dead. He said,
"THERE WERE ONLY 8 OR 10 OF US IN THE INNER CIRCLE AROUND THE PRESIDENT WHO REALLY KNEW WHAT WAS GOING ON." HE SAID, "ALL WE HAD TO DO WAS STONEWALL FOR A COUPLE OF MONTHS AND THE WATERGATE SCANDAL WOULD BE OVER... THERE WAS NO GRAVE DANGER. OUR LIVES WERE NOT THREATENED, BUT WE COULD NOT HOLD THE CONSPIRACY TOGETHER FOR MORE THAN 2 WEEKS. COLSON CONCLUDES, " I KNOW THAT THE DISCIPLES COULD NOT PERPETUATE A LIE LIKE THE RESURRECTION, BECAUSE IT WAS NOT JUST THEIR REPUTATIONS THAT WERE AT STAKE, THEIR LIVES WERE IN DANGER. THEY HAD NO CLOUT, THEY HAD NOTHING TO GAIN BY THE LIE AND YET EVERYONE OF THEM STOOD FAST IN THE CONVICTION THAT JESUS IS ALIVE.
There were over 500 that saw Jesus after He arose. Lies still circulate today. The truth is that Jesus is not dead any longer. He arose and is Alive. We serve a living God.
A living God means that He can be and is there for us when we need Him. He can and does listen to the prayers of His children.
II. THE EMPTY TOMB MEANS THAT THERE IS FORGIVENESS
if there is anyone who needed a dose of hope, if anyone ever needed to know that what Jesus said was true, it was a distraught, guilt ridden, Peter.... He needed the reassurance of His teacher. Christ appeared to Mary, then He appeared to Peter. In John 21 we have the account of Peter being restored to service. He is to Feed the sheep of the Lord. In Acts 2 we see Peter proclaiming the gospel. Peter was restored and forgiven. He was not cast away and forgotten.
Paul even makes a point of telling is in I Corinthians 15, that Jesus appeared to peter and then to the 12."
Christ’s sacrifice was to pay for the penalty of sin. Once the sacrifice was given,
Peter was able to receive the forgiveness that he needed, and became a great preacher and witness for the Lord. He received peace and hope. He received restoration.
Isaiah tells us that Jesus was “pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities, the punishment that brought us peace was upon him and by his wounds we are healed.." Is 53:5