Summary: This outline is for the congregation to follow to accompany the full text of the message by the same title.
TOUCH AND REMEMBER
The 2002 Easter Lesson
Pastor Don Hawks
(All Bible readings from The Message Translation unless indicated)
At the crack of dawn on Sunday, the women came to the tomb carrying the burial spices they had prepared. They found the entrance stone rolled back from the tomb, so they walked in. But once inside, they couldn’t find the body of the Master Jesus.
They were puzzled, wondering what to make of this. Then, out of nowhere it seemed, two men, light cascading over them, stood there. The women were awestruck and bowed down in worship. The men said, “Why are you looking for the Living One in a cemetery? He is not here, but raised up. Remember how he told you when you were still back in Galilee that he had to be handed over to sinners, be killed on a cross, and in three days rise up?” Then they remembered Jesus’ words.
Luke 24:34 (NRSV): “The Lord has risen indeed!"
WHAT COULD THE EARLY FOLLOWERS OF JESUS REMEMBER ON THE FIRST EASTER SUNDAY THAT WE COULD REMEMBER ON THIS EASTER SUNDAY?
1. CHRIST BEING NAILED TO THE CROSS: (Luke 23:32-33)
Two others, both criminals, were taken along with him for execution.
When they got to the place called Skull Hill, they crucified him, along with the criminals, one on his right, the other on his left.
The question: What will I do with the cross? What will I do with the hammer and nails? Will I run to the cross and allow God to cleanse me and make me whole?
2. THE GUARD WITH THE EAR SLICING (Luke 22:49-51)
When the other disciples saw what was about to happen, they exclaimed, “Lord, should we fight? We brought the swords!” And one of them slashed at the high priest’s servant and cut off his right ear.But Jesus said, “Don’t resist anymore.” And he touched the place where the man’s ear had been and healed him. (NLT)
The question: Am I watching and praying, so that I avoid temptation?
3. The LAST SUPPER (Luke 22:19-20)
Taking bread, he blessed it, broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, given for you. Eat it in my memory.”He did the same with the cup after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant written in my blood, blood poured out for you.”
The question: When was the last time I said, “I could really use the Lord’s Supper?”
4. THE HEALING OF THE LEPER (Luke 5:12-13)
One day in one of the villages there was a man covered with leprosy. When he saw Jesus he fell down before him in prayer and said, “If you want to, you can cleanse me.” Jesus put out his hand, touched him, and said, “I want to. Be clean.” Then and there his skin was smooth, the leprosy gone.
The question: Have I experienced the Master’s touch? Do I recognize my need for healing?
5. HEALING OF THE BLIND MAN (Mark 8:22-25)
They arrived at Bethsaida. Some people brought a sightless man and begged Jesus to give him a healing touch. Taking him by the hand, he led him out of the village. He put spit in the man’s eyes, laid hands on him, and asked, “Do you see anything?” He looked up. “I see men. They look like walking trees.” So Jesus laid hands on his eyes again. The man looked hard and realized that he had recovered perfect sight, saw everything in bright, twenty-twenty focus. Jesus sent him straight home, telling him, “Don’t enter the village.”
The question: Am I blind to the miracle God is performing in the middle of my life?
6. JESUS WALKING ON THE WATER (Matthew 14:29-32)
He said, “Come ahead.” Jumping out of the boat, Peter walked on the water to Jesus. But when he looked down at the waves churning beneath his feet, he lost his nerve and started to sink. He cried, “Master, save me!” Jesus didn’t hesitate. He reached down and grabbed his hand. Then he said, “Faint-heart, what got into you?” The two of them climbed into the boat, and the wind died down.
The question: Do I feel like sinking this morning or can I sense the amazing power of the Christ reaching out to me in the storms of life?
7. THE BABY JESUS (Luke 2:7)
She gave birth to her first child, a son. She wrapped him snugly in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the village inn. (NLT)
The question: Can I perceive what God has done? Can I weigh all the evidence and realize how much God loves me, and how much of His love is communicated through the birth of a baby in Bethlehem?