"The Power of the Resurrection" (Easter Sermon)

THE POWER OF THE RESURRECTION

Philippians 3:7-11

Introduction:

A.  What is the most powerful force in the universe today?

            1.  The power of the wind?  (EX:  recent tornados)

            2.  The power of the waves?  (EX:  recent tsunamis)

            3.  The power of the watt?  (electricity)

            4.  The power of war?  (nuclear warfare)

 

B.  Paul knew that the most powerful force in the universe was

the power of the resurrection.

It has the power to change lives.

 

C.  Notice how the Resurrection changed the Lives of Many.

 

I.  The Resurrection Changed Some From Doubt to Devotion.

            (Thomas—John 20:24-28)

 

            A.  Thomas was a Doubter—

But the Resurrection Changed Him.

1.  He was a pessimistic person.  (see Jn.11:15-16;

14:1-6)

                        2.  He became a mighty witness.

                             Ancient testimony says he carried gospel as far

as India.  To this day, on a hill near the airport in Chennai (Madras) India there is a place where Thomas is said to be buried.  There are churches in South India that trace their beginnings to Thomas ministry.  He is said to have been martyred there—run through by a spear.

           

            B.  Are you a Doubter, like Thomas? 

The Resurrection can change you!

Why do we believe in the Resurrection today?

1.  Because of the Empty Tomb.

            a.  The disciples couldn’t have stolen it.

            b.  The Jews wouldn’t have misplaced it.

            c.  The Lord couldn’t have faked it.

2.  Because of the Eyewitness Testimony.

3.  Because of the Extraordinary Transformations.

 

The greatest evidence that Jesus is the Son of God

and Savior of the World is the Resurrection.

 

If you are skeptical of Jesus, the Resurrection has

the power to change you.

 

II.  The Resurrection Changed Some From Fear to Faith.

            (The disciples—John 20:19-21)

 

            A.  The Disciples Were Shut Up for Fear.

                        1.  We all know Peter denied Christ for fear.

                        2.  All the disciples were afraid.

 

            B.  The Disciples Would Speak Up in Faith.

                        1.  The Day of Pentecost came and they preached

                                    Jesus to all the city at the Temple.

                        2.  They preached Jesus in spite of persecution.

                        3.  They preached Jesus boldly to the world.

                                    What made the Difference?

                                    The RESURRECTION!

 

            C.  Some say the Disciples just made up the story.

                        1.  The disciples were surprised to see Jesus.

                        2.  The disciples would not lie for a story.

 

            D.  Are you afraid of something today?

                        Darkness?  Disputes?  Disease?  Death? 

 

                        There is no need to fear because Jesus is Alive!

                        (see Matt.28:18-20)

 

“I am inwardly fashioned for faith, not for fear. Fear is not my native land; faith is. I am so made that worry and anxiety are sand in the machinery of life; faith is the oil. I live better by faith and confidence than by fear, doubt and anxiety. In anxiety and worry, my being is gasping for breath—these are not my native air. But in faith and confidence, I breathe freely—these are my native air.

A John Hopkins University doctor says, “We do not know why it is that worriers die sooner than the non-worriers, but that is a fact.” But I, who am simple of mind, think I know; We are inwardly constructed in nerve and tissue, brain cell and soul, for faith and not for fear. God made us that way. To live by worry is to live against reality. “

- Dr. E. Stanley Jones

If you are living in fear, the power of the resurrection can change you.

 

III.  The Resurrection Changed Some From Despair to Delight.

            (Mary—John 20:11-18)

 

            A.  Mary Magdelene was very close to Jesus.

                        1.  Jesus drove seven demons out of her.

                        2.  Mary, and other women, supported the ministry

     of Jesus and the disciples and followed them.

3.  She was at the cross of Jesus.  (Jn.19:25)

4.  She was at the tomb to anoint his body.

 

            B.  Mary is understandably very upset at the death of Jesus.

 

            C.  The Resurrection Changed Her.

                        I like the question of the angels (Jn.20:13, 15)

 

            D.  We cry for lost loved ones, too.  Why?

                        1.  Lost fellowship.

                        2.  Lost love.  (that we can give or receive)

                        3.  Lost dreams.

 

            E.  The resurrection changes all that.

                 1.  Because of the resurrection we can have a reunion.

                 2.  Because of the resurrection our love will never die.

                 3.  Because of the resurrection our dreams are not here

                        but hereafter.

 

            Whatever has caused you despair, the resurrection has the power to bring you delight once again!

 

IV.  The Resurrection Changed Some From Confusion

to Confidence.  (Disciples to Emmaus—Luke 24:12-35)

 

A.  The Disciples were Confused about Jesus’ Person.

            1.  Peter had proclaimed at one time He was the

Christ, the Son of the Living God.

            2.  But all were wondering after the crucifixion.

 

B.  The Disciples were Confused about Jesus’ Power.

            1.  He had the power to heal sick, raise the dead.

            2.  Didn’t He have power to withstand enemy?

 

C.  The Disciples were Confused about Jesus’ Prophecy.

            1.  Jesus clearly told them that He must die and rise

again the third day.  The sign of Jonah.

                        2.  They didn’t get it.

 

            D.  The Resurrection Cleared Up Everything.

                        1.  They now understood what He prophesied.

                        2.  They now understood who He was.

                        3.  They now understood His power was not gone.

 

            E.  Are you confused about anything?

        ILL:  Harry Truman enjoyed telling about the man who was hit on the head at work. The blow was so severe he was knocked unconscious for an extended period of time. His family, convinced he was dead, called the funeral home and asked the local undertaker to pick hum up at the hospital, which he did.

Early the following morning this dear man suddenly awoke and sat straight up in the casket. Confused, he blinked several times and looked around, trying to put the whole thing together. He thought, “If I’m alive, what in the world am I doing in this soft, satin-filled box? And if I’m dead, why do I have to go to the bathroom?”

 

F.  There are some things you never have to be confused

about because of the resurrection:

            1.  You don’t have to be confused about who Jesus

is.  He is the living Son of God.

            2.  You don’t have to be confused about how to get

to heaven.  He is the way, the truth, the life.

            3.  You don’t have to be confused about what your

 purpose is.  The Great Commission.

 

V.  The Resurrection Changed Some From Power to Panic.

            (The Roman Guards—Matthew 27:62-28:4)

 

            A.  The Watch was Set & Secured.

                        1.  Many knew that Jesus said He would rise again.

                        2.  The soldiers actually proved He rose again.

                                    If no watch was set, it might be believed His

body was stolen.  But because a watch was

there,  it proves Jesus really arose.

 

            B.  The Watch was Scared.

                        1.  These are brave Roman guards.

                        2.  They are scared to the point of fainting. (4)

 

 

 

 

            C.  Because Jesus is Alive, You will Stand Before Him

Someday.

1.  If you are a Christian, it will be a happy time.

            You will be rewarded for your faithfulness.

 

2.  If you are an unbeliever, it will be a horrible

time.

You will be rebuked for your unbelief.

(Rev.1:12-17; 20:11-15)

I don’t care how brave you are—you will

cringe before God.

EX:  Scene in Forrest Gump or Lt. Dan

shaking his fist at God.

 

            That is also the power of the resurrection—Jesus is alive.

            He knows you.  He will judge you.  There is no escape.

 

VI.  The Resurrection Changed Some from Death to Life.

            (The Dead Saints—Matthew 27:51-53)

 

            A.  Those who had died in the faith lived again after His

resurrection.

1.  I have preached this incorrectly before.

            I said it was after crucifixion.

            It was after the resurrection this occurred.

2. Jesus was the firstfruits.

 

            B.  Jesus is still bringing the dead back to life today.

 

                        1.  Those who die in Christ He will give life.

                                    (see I Thess.4:13-18)

                                    Our resurrection is guaranteed by

His resurrection.

 

                        2.  Those who are dead in their sins only Christ can

give you life.

“And you hath He quickened who were dead

in trespasses and sins”  (Eph.2:1)

 

Someone can’t give you something they

don’t have themselves.  A dead man can’t

 give you life. 

Buddha can’t give you life.

 Confucius can’t give you life. 

Mohammed can’t give you life. 

Moses can’t give you life. 

Only Jesus can give you life.

 

Conclusion:

The power of the resurrection is the power to change us.

It is the greatest power in the universe.

 

It is the Power to Release Us our from bondage & fear.

It is the Power to Relieve Us from our burdens & cares.

It is the Power to Revive Us from our coldness & hardness.

It is the Power to Redeem Us from our sins & self.

 

Do you need a change?

The you need the power of the resurrection.

The way to have the power of the resurrection is to invite the Resurrected Savior into your life.

 

  As soon as that tomb had Jesus within it, it had the power of the resurrection.

As soon as you have Jesus within you, you will have His power.

You will have the Power of the Resurrection.

 

 

 
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