Faithlife Sermons

Resurrection Day

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A. The Bible is a Story of God’s Grace

1. Genesis chapter 3 tells about the fall of mankind from God’s glory. Isa 59:2

Isaiah 59:2 NASB95
But your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, And your sins have hidden His face from you so that He does not hear.

2. The rest of Scripture covers how God is restoring fellowship with mankind through His Son, Jesus Christ.

B. God has Always had Witnesses to His Plan

1. OT history had a cloud of witnesses. Hebrews 4:12

2. The nation of Israel was to be God’s witness. Isaiah 43:12

Isaiah 43:12 NASB95
“It is I who have declared and saved and proclaimed, And there was no strange god among you; So you are My witnesses,” declares the Lord, “And I am God.

3. John the Baptist was God’s witness. John 1:6-7

John 1:6–7 NASB95
There came a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness, to testify about the Light, so that all might believe through him.

4. The works of Jesus are a witness. John 5:36

John 5:36 NASB95
“But the testimony which I have is greater than the testimony of John; for the works which the Father has given Me to accomplish—the very works that I do—testify about Me, that the Father has sent Me.

5. The Scriptures are witnesses. John 5:39

John 5:39 NASB95
“You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; it is these that testify about Me;

6. Future Tribulation Witnesses. Revelation 11:3

Revelation 11:3 NASB95
“And I will grant authority to my two witnesses, and they will prophesy for twelve hundred and sixty days, clothed in sackcloth.”

C. The Single Most Important Witness

The single most important witness of God’s grace throughout history is the resurrection.
What’s so important about it? What’s the big deal?

1. Jesus claimed He would be rejected by religious leaders, killed and rise three days later. Mark 8:31

Mark 8:31 NASB95
And He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again.

2. Jesus claimed He was the resurrection and the life and whoever believes in Him will also live forever. John 11:25-26

John 11:25–26 NASB95
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?”

a. Two options:

i. Option 1: Jesus was a fake

He never died, he just took a nap for three days.
This does not hold up. Romans were best at causing suffering and death.
empty tomb - no body. Nobody has been able to produce a body. Perhaps Joseph of Arimathea used the empty tomb.
He was lying
So what about His miracles? People were healed. He walked on water. He calmed the sea.
Why would He suffer and die for a lie?
He was insane, a lunatic
How could a madman, one out of his mind, cause a following of thousands by simply teaching?
He was Satan himself
Why did He cast out demons?

ii. Option 2: Jesus was actually who He said He was. The Son of Man, God in the flesh, full of grace and truth.

b. Consider Option 1: If false, the resurrection never occurred and ultimately those who believe him have no hope.

c. Consider Option 2: What if the claims of Jesus are true?

i. Is there a reliable way to confirm? Are there witnesses?

Are they a reliable source?
Eye witnesses. Personal, first-hand knowledge of.
Willing to die for what they saw. Not what they blindly believed.
How many eye-witnesses?
Hundreds upon hundreds of witnesses
Do they all corroborate the same story?
no court in the world would dismiss this evidence

ii. Jesus’s offer of giving peace, forgiveness, freedom, security, and ultimately the gift of living forever must be true!

D. The Resurrection Witnesses Today!

The resurrection is proof that Jesus actually died for our sins and was buried. It is proof that the Scriptures tell the truth and testify about Him. Most importantly, the resurrection of Jesus Christ proves divine justice has been satisfied and the debt of sin has been paid a way to defeat death is now been made accessible and resurrection awaits all who believe Him.
what does the word “witness” mean in the Greek?
comes from the same Greek root word we get our english word martyr from.
witness n. — someone who sees an event and reports what happened. - Bible Sense Lexicon

1. Living witnesses saw the resurrected Jesus. Acts 4:20

Acts 4:20 NASB95
for we cannot stop speaking about what we have seen and heard.”

2. The Church age witnesses. Acts 1:8

a. WIth the descent of the Holy Spirit, God left the witness of the church.

Acts 1:8 NASB95
but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.”

b. The church has been made an adequate living witness

1 Peter 2:9 NASB95
But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;
a. PROCLAIM: root: to inform - impart knowledge of some type, to announce broadly v. — to make known openly and with wide distribution.

c. The core of our witness is that the resurrected Jesus lives today

Hebrews 4:14 NASB95
Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession.
2 Corinthians 4:5 NASB95
For we do not preach ourselves but Christ Jesus as Lord, and ourselves as your bond-servants for Jesus’ sake.

E. The Acceptance of this Witness is up to You

1. Witnesses only give testimony

a. It is up to you to investigate, dig and research to arrive at your conclusion whether it’s true or not. If it’s false, then it’s worthless jargon.

1 Corinthians 15:17 NASB95
and if Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless; you are still in your sins.

b. if it’s true, then it’s reasonable that you trust Him for your salvation.

Galatians 5:1 NASB95
It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.

3. Evaluate the witness account.

a. Is the witness credible, is the testimony verifiable, is the testimony reasonable?

b. Both options cannot be true. Either Jesus was a fraud or His claims are absolutely true.

i. Josh Macdowell - pre-law student who was challenged by christians to prove the claims of Jesus of Nazareth to be false. He dropped out of school, studied in the best European libraries and arrived at the following conclusion:
“Jesus was more than a mere carpenter. He was who He claimed to be.”
BE AWARE: many have gone before you and ended up believers.

c. Ultimately you will accept by faith either Jesus was a fraud or everything He claimed is absolutely certain. What will it be?

Romans 8:11 NASB95
But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.
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