The Power Of The Resurrection (John 19:41-20:18)Simon Schrock, April 5, 2015
Part of the Sermon series, preached at a Sunday Morning service
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The fact of the resurrection is central to the Christian faith! It gives hope to the Christian and offers victory over sin and death!
For everything that is meaningful to the Christian, Satan has his counterfeit or “distraction” as seen in our culture’s focus on the Easter bunny, colored eggs, and new clothes.
Simon read from John 19:41-20:18. The events of the crucifixion devastated the followers of Jesus! We can see “the whole picture” as we look back on this story, but Christ’s disciples couldn’t. The cross seemed like “the end” to them.
The cross is often used as a symbol of the Christian faith. Simon suggested that the empty tomb might be a better symbol. The resurrection is the part of the salvation story that makes it “The Good News.” How did Jesus get out of the tomb? There are at least ten Scripture verses that say, “God raised Him up.” In the account of Matthew, it says that the angel of the Lord came down from Heaven and rolled away the stone. With the stone rolled away, people could see that the tomb was empty!
The preaching of the resurrection is what got the disciples in trouble with the authorities. They were witnesses of the resurrection and that fact, plus the infilling of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, made that they lived their Christian lives in the power of the resurrection. We, too, should remember that this same power that raised up Jesus from the dead will give us life and victory over sin and death.
How am I affected by the resurrection? For one thing, I realize I am what I am by the grace of God! He has washed me, He has justified me, He has sanctified me or set me apart for His purpose and glory! He has given me the power to live and walk in the Spirit. I have a free conscience, and have peace with God through the Lord Jesus Christ. I am not afraid to die. I know that this life is not “all there is,” but that there is an eternity ahead! I am keeping my focus on what is eternal, (Colossians 3:1) because I want to be ready for that final resurrection when we will experience the power of the resurrection in a new way with new bodies, dwelling with our risen Savior forever! I praise God for this hope!
41 Now in the place where he was crucified there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb in which no one had yet been laid. 42 So because of the Jewish day of Preparation, since the tomb was close at hand, they laid Jesus there.
20:1 Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early, while it was still dark, and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb. 2 So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.” 3 So Peter went out with the other disciple, and they were going toward the tomb. 4 Both of them were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. 5 And stooping to look in, he saw the linen cloths lying there, but he did not go in. 6 Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb. He saw the linen cloths lying there, 7 and the face cloth, which had been on Jesus' head, not lying with the linen cloths but folded up in a place by itself. 8 Then the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went in, and he saw and believed; 9 for as yet they did not understand the Scripture, that he must rise from the dead. 10 Then the disciples went back to their homes.
11 But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb, and as she wept she stooped to look into the tomb. 12 And she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had lain, one at the head and one at the feet. 13 They said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?” She said to them, “They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him.” 14 Having said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing, but she did not know that it was Jesus. 15 Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?” Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.” 16 Jesus said to her, “Mary.” She turned and said to him in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means Teacher). 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.’” 18 Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord”—and that he had said these things to her. (ESV)