Summary: The burial of Jesus is not merely incidental; although not as important as the other two points of the Gospel, it is something we need to contemplate and study.

The Transition: What Happened Before the Resurrection?

1. Two men went hunting in Canada -- had a pilot take them to remote spot. They shot 6 elk. Pilot says, “We can’t fly with that many-- too heavy. We can only take three.”

“Last year we had the same kind of plane and took 6 elk.”

“Okay,” said pilot. They flew, but soon could not ascent above the hills and crashed. All survived.

“Where are we?” one hunter asked the other.

“Oh, about a mile from where we crashed last year!”

2. Some people make the same mistakes over and over and over…

3. This is true regarding a response to the Gospel (hear but do not commit) or living for the Lord (know they should, but later…). Jesus did a lot of work for us and paid a price we cannot imagine — for you and for me.

4. This time of year, we contemplate the Gospel of the grace of God, summarized in I Cor. 15: Christ died for our sins, was buried, and rose again the third day.

5. Last week, we examined some basic reasons for the burial. To follow the imagery of the Passover (no lamb left overnight) while proving Jesus was dead,and then beginning the transition toward exaltation. Jesus was born in poverty, had nowhere to lay his head, and died a shameful death as a criminal. The fact that the tomb was a "rich man's tomb" --not the public cemetery for criminals -- begins the upward trend toward his exaltation.

But what happened between the time Jesus was buried and he arose on that first Resurrection Sunday?

6. The short answer is that nothing happened to his body during that time, but what about his spirit? And what teachings does the burial imply?

Main idea: The burial of Jesus is not merely incidental; although not as important as the other two points of the Gospel, it is something we need to contemplate and study.

TS ———> Let me share three possibilities for what Jesus did during this time.

I. Jesus PRESENTED His Sacrifice to the Father (Hebrews 9:24-28)

A. Prefigured by First Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) GOAT (Lev. 16:15, 20-22)

1. Two goats, the first one sacrificed

2. Blood sprinkled on mercy seat once a year

B. Sometime Jesus PRESENTED his blood to the Father as an atonement for us

1. Could be figurative for what happened during those dark hours

2. Could refer to what Jesus did in spirit after the cross, a celebration?

3. tabernacle corresponds to God’s throne room in heaven (in principle)

C. When might this have ACTUALLY occurred (John 20:17)?

John 20:17, “Jesus said to her, “Do not cling to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father; but go to my brothers and say to them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’”

Application: What matters most is not when these events occurred, but that they did. And Jesus did all this things just for you. Imagine that — God sent his Son as a sacrifice!

II. Christ’s Burial Symbolized His Leaving Our Sins -- And His Humiliation – BEHIND in the Grave

A. The Second Goat of Yom Kippur ILLUSTRATES this (Lev. 16:15, 20-22)

(1) one goat sacrificed, blood sprinkled on Ark of the Covenant

(2) other goat leaning into, released in wilderness

B. Water baptism pictures THIS

Romans 6:3-4, “ Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.”

• Only immersion can paint this picture; sprinkling is not baptism

C. “Living He loved me, dying He saved me, buried he CARRIED my sins far away”

1. Lightning dissipates when it strikes ground; so our sins are dissipated ….

2. As far as East is from West Psalm 103

Micah 7:19, “He will again have compassion on us; he will tread our iniquities underfoot. You will cast all our sins into the depths of the sea.”

Application: We all struggle with guilt, or at least should.

1. Sometimes we feel guilty over things that we should not feel guilty about: making a sincere mistake, forgetting something important, etc.

2. But there are plenty of thing we do that are clearly wrong. Hurtful words, adultery, hurting others with our temper, cruel acts, selfishness, etc.

3. We wonder, “Can God forgive me?” Satan tries to accuse us (Romans 8): Jesus defends. Jesus already paid penalty for your sins; let them hit you, but accept God’s forgiveness

III. DECLARATION of Victory (I Peter 3:18-20)

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