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Sunrise Service 2018

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Why the Resurrection

If I were to ask you what is the one thing you must believe in order for your faith to be valid, what would it be?
You might be saying, that’s not a good question. There are multiple things
Bart Ehrman Interview—distinguished professer of religion—UNC
Went to Moody and Wheaton
Did his graduate work at Princeton University
A very smart, scholarly guy.
Has studied the Bible as much, if not more, than anybody in the world
He has written books about how Christianity started and spread
“The Triumph of Christianity: How a Forbidden Religion Swept the World”
Turns out he is an agnostic.
The problem of pain turned him away from the faith
How can God allow children to starve to death, the holacaust, etc
In answer to one of the interviewer’s questions:
“I think that there are a lot of things in the Bible that are made up. I don’t think that Jesus said and did all the things that the Bible reports him to have done.”
And then he said this:
“I don’t believe that Jesus rose from the dead, for example”.
And I thought, “There’s your problem right there”
Because if you would ask, what is the core thing that you must believe in order for o
And I thought of
Because if you would ask, what is the core thing that you must believe in order for your faith to be valid, Paul would point you to what he said to the Corinthians
First several verses—Reminds them of the Gospel—that is
Verse 3 and 4
He died for our sins
that he was burried
that he was raised on the third day
All of this according to the Scriptures.
Then verse 12
If we witnessed that Christ rose from the dead, we proclaimed this to you, and you came to faith on that basis, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead.
And he reasons with them
If there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised.
Christ, through the power of God, would not do something that God has not made possible
And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is vain and your faith is vain
“Vain” does not mean proud. It means “empty”, “useless”, “futile” pointless.
Furthermore, “we have lied about God” vs. 15
We said that He raised Christ. But He didn’t raise Christ if there is no resurrection of the dead.
What are the implications of this?
Christ was never raised. He is still in the tomb. Or his body was stolen away
Those who have died are eternally dead
We are still in our sins
The Resurrection was God’s stamp of approval that the redemption paid by Christ on the cross was accepted.
(NIV)
25 He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.
So, if we only have hope in this life, we are to be pitied vs. 19
If the Gospel is only a bunch of good ideas about love and peace we are to be pitied
But it’s NOT! It’s a living hope. It’s a transformational hope!
The resurrection completed a transaction between God and man that puts us in a right standing before God
And the same power that raised Christ from the dead is the same power that is at work in us through the Holy Spirit
And so this is why we celebrate today!
The whole work of Jesus, his birth, life, death, resurrection are important.
But it is the resurrection that was God’s final stamp of authentication on the work of redemption.
Why is our faith vain
Because it is based on a confession that Jesus is Lord and that God has raised Him from the dead.
Paul expounds on this in vs. 20-28
Jesus as Lord—He will put all His enemies under his feet. And the last enemy to be destroyed is death
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