I love movies. I can watch almost any kind of movie and be just fine. But there’s one type of movie that I just can’t stand. I absolutely hate Disaster movies. These are the movies where the world is ending and millions of people die and there often isn’t a lot of hope because you can’t really fight nature. Just last week I watched a movie called The Happening where a mysterious natural force makes people kill themselves. I hated it. You can ask Myranda, I felt sick just watching the movie. When I was younger, my dad took me to the theaters to see a movie called The Core where the plot of the movie is the Earth’s core is failing, and if we don’t find a way to jump start it, the entire planet will die. I was so freaked out by the end of the movie that when we got home that night I asked my dad, “Is that going to happen to us??” to which he calmed all my fears by saying, “Well…probably not.” Gee thanks dad. There is however, one type of disaster movie that I sometimes enjoy. That’s alien movies. Sure they are scary, and usually involve the end of the world, some of them can be pretty cool like Independence Day, War of the Worlds, or classic horror films like Alien and Predator. The thought of being invaded by something we don’t know, scares us. That’s probably because we already have been invaded.
Yes, it’s true, an invasion has already taken place. In fact, the invaders have been here for a while. What’s worse, is that we pretty much let them in without a fight, and they’ve become so comfortable living among us that we tend to forget they are even here sometimes. The first invader makes us sick. He infects us with a virus that is very unique because no matter how sick we get it’s really hard for us to see that we are sick, yet we can so easily tell when others around us are. When we finally do realize that we have been infected and that we are getting sicker by the day we usually try to pretend that we aren’t. We are like a terminal patient who goes around trying to act normal yet everyone can clearly tell that they are not okay. Sometimes we even believe that we have found a cure for ourselves and that we aren’t sick anymore…but then every once in a while we really look at ourselves in a mirror and realize deep down that not only are we fooling ourselves, but we have a far worst case than we could ever imagine. We call this invader Sin, and he’s really good at what he does, successfully infecting every single one of us.
The other invader is much more elusive. We hear about him working all around the world but often don’t pay any attention to him…until he attacks us personally. We call him Death, and just when we think we’ve forgotten about him he takes someone else from us. As the years go on he picks off each one of us, one by one, until finally it’s just us and we know that we are next. We see this in alien and monster movies when a group of soldiers are trying to fight the enemy…yet they cannot see him. They can hear him, but he hides in the darkness, and one by one we see the creature drag each person into the darkness until there is only one person left, and he too is taken away. This is how death works. Sin makes us sick, and death finishes us off. We’ve been invaded.
As I said before, these invaders have been here for so long that we’ve just kind of gotten use to them. We’ve accepted the reality that they are here and just like in most disaster movies we believe that they can’t be defeated, we can’t be cured and we can’t be saved. But what if I told you, we might have a chance? Today I want us to ENVISION INVASION ERADICATION. Let me say it again: ENVISION INVASION ERADICATION. Picture a world where something, or someone could possibly defeat these invaders. Many of you are here because you’ve heard that maybe Jesus can do that. Maybe he can defeat the invaders. As impossible as it may sound, maybe, just maybe we have a chance. I think we do, and heres why.
Jesus Defeats Sin
Jesus Defeats Sin
First, Jesus was never infected by Sin. He’s the only person in all of history to somehow not get sick with the most contagious virus in existence. Unlike other people who say that we should try to escape the world and keep ourselves from being contaminated, Jesus dived in head first and surrounded himself with some of the sickest and worst people. Yet, amazingly he never gave into temptation. He was never infected. Now some might look at Jesus and say, “Well if he really was God then of course he never sinned! It must have been so easy for him! He just doesn’t get it!” But that’s just not true. Not only was Jesus God, but he was also fully human. Which means he faced every single temptation like we did…but far from rolling our eyes at him out of jealousy we should realize that what Jesus went through was so much worse. See whenever the infection of sin grips us, temptation becomes like an itch. What do we want to do with an itch? We want to scratch it. But what happens if we don’t scratch an itch? It gets worse. And worse. And worse. Until finally we can’t take it any longer and we give in. We scratch the itch. And the invader wins. But now imagine this: you go your whole life without scratching the itch. We can’t even go a whole day without sinning! Imagine fighting the urge for an entire lifetime and how painful and tough it must have been. No wonder Jesus was called a man of sorrows.
So then what does it mean for us that Jesus was never infected? Well, what happens when there is an outbreak of a physical disease? When looking for a cure, we usually look to see if anyone is immune to the disease, and if they are we realize there must be something special about them. They must hold the secret to a cure. In our case, Jesus is the cure. He has defeated the first invader because he himself was not infected. He has give us home. Jesus has given us a way to ENVISION INVASION ERADICATION.
Jesus Defeats Death
Jesus Defeats Death
But what about the other invader? Most of us would probably consider death to be far more powerful than sin. He seems like the one enemy that nobody, not even Jesus, can defeat. Let’s see if that’s true. Turn to .
Commentate the entire passage.
Jesus always backs up his claims. We read a few verses later that he backs up his claims and does raise Lazarus from the dead. Jesus sucker punches death. But Jesus wasn’t content with one punch, he was going for the knockout. See there’s another place where the people also mocked Jesus for being able to “save others, but he couldn’t save himself.” “What a shame, he claimed to be the Son of God…yet here he is, hanging on a cross. I guess death wins…again.” “The man who claimed to rebuild the temple in three days! ha!” That’s why they were mocking him. He had claimed he could rebuild the temple in three days if they tore it down. But Jesus wasn’t talking about a building. He was talking about his body. And Jesus always backs up his claims. Three days later, he rebuilt the temple. He rose from the dead, and on that morning he gave us the opportunity to ENVISION INVASION ERADICATION.
But there’s a catch. You see sin and death aren’t just external invaders. They are inside of us. The only way that Jesus can truly eradicate the invaders is if we let him in. We have to let him invade us. This isn’t easy, nor is it painless. If anyone ever said the Christian Life was easy they were lying to you. There is no middle ground: we are going to be invaded. We can either pick sin and death or the Resurrection and the Life. We’ve seen which one is more powerful, but the choice is still ours: Jesus will never force himself into your life. You have a choice. Pick your invader.