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Death Loses the Game

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Why do people die? Is there a way to cheat death? What gives us hope in the face of death? Because Jesus rose again and promised He will come back for us we have hope.

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Death Loses the Game

It’s a couple of weeks since Resurrection Sunday. I want us to look this morning at the hope we have because of that resurrection. Let’s look at
1 Corinthians 15:51–57 NKJV
51 Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed—52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 54 So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.” 55 “O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?” 56 The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
A. Death Stalks Us All ()
Hebrews 9:27 NKJV
27 And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment,
B. Why Do People Die?
Roger Campbell. Preach for a Year: 104 Sermon Outlines (Preach for a Year Series): 7 (Kindle Locations 473-475). Kindle Edition.
1. Death came because of sin (; )
Romans 3:23 NKJV
23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
Rom 3.23
Romans 5:12 NKJV
12 Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned—
rom
2. Cemeteries and funerals remind us of this universal appointment
2. Cemeteries and funerals remind us of this universal appointment
C. How, Then, Could Paul Taunt Death?
1. "0 death, where is thy sting?"
2. "0 grave, where is thy victory?"
D. What Gives Hope in the Face of Death?

The Receiving up of Enoch and Elijah Gives Us Hope

Enoch, the first man to escape death ()
Genesis 5:21–24 NKJV
21 Enoch lived sixty-five years, and begot Methuselah. 22 After he begot Methuselah, Enoch walked with God three hundred years, and had sons and daughters. 23 So all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five years. 24 And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.
a. Enoch was the father of earth’s oldest man, Methuselah
b. Enoch outdid his record-holding son: he didn’t die.
c. Enoch walked with God, and … God took him. (v. 24)
2. Elijah: caught up to heaven while Elisha watched ()
2 kings 2:9-12
2 Kings 2:9–12 NKJV
9 And so it was, when they had crossed over, that Elijah said to Elisha, “Ask! What may I do for you, before I am taken away from you?” Elisha said, “Please let a double portion of your spirit be upon me.” 10 So he said, “You have asked a hard thing. Nevertheless, if you see me when I am taken from you, it shall be so for you; but if not, it shall not be so.” 11 Then it happened, as they continued on and talked, that suddenly a chariot of fire appeared with horses of fire, and separated the two of them; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven. 12 And Elisha saw it, and he cried out, “My father, my father, the chariot of Israel and its horsemen!” So he saw him no more. And he took hold of his own clothes and tore them into two pieces.
3. Some think these two will return to minister during the Tribulation ()
a. Their appointment with death was postponed.
b. They are proof that life and death are in the hands of God.

The Resurrection of Christ Gives Us Hope

1 Corinthians 15:1–8 NKJV
1 Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, 2 by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. 3 For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve. 6 After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep. 7 After that He was seen by James, then by all the apostles. 8 Then last of all He was seen by me also, as by one born out of due time.
1. The defeat of death by Christ is part of the gospel.
a. His resurrection proved His deity. ()
John 2:19–21 NKJV
19 Jesus answered and said to them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” 20 Then the Jews said, “It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and will You raise it up in three days?” 21 But He was speaking of the temple of His body.
b. There were many witnesses to the resurrection. ()
1 Corinthians 15:4–8 NKJV
4 and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve. 6 After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep. 7 After that He was seen by James, then by all the apostles. 8 Then last of all He was seen by me also, as by one born out of due time.
2. He was declared to be the Son of God by His resurrection ()
Romans 1:4 NKJV
4 and declared to be the Son of God with power according to the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead.
3. If Christ had not risen, there would be no victory over death. ()
1 Corinthians 15:12–19 NKJV
12 Now if Christ is preached that He has been raised from the dead, how do some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? 13 But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ is not risen. 14 And if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty. 15 Yes, and we are found false witnesses of God, because we have testified of God that He raised up Christ, whom He did not raise up—if in fact the dead do not rise. 16 For if the dead do not rise, then Christ is not risen. 17 And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins! 18 Then also those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. 19 If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most pitiable.
a. Paul would not have been able to mock death like he did
b. All those who have died would be gone forever
c. All preaching, faith, and witnessing would be in vain.
4. The resurrection guarantees God’s promise of eternal life.
a. In Adam, all die, but in Christ all shall be made alive ()
1 Corinthians 15:22 NKJV
22 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive.
b. Our resurrection will be similar to that of Christ.

The Promise of the Rapture Gives Us Hope

1. “We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed.”
a. Not all Christians will die.
b. Those living at the time of the Rapture escape death
2. No wonder Paul could taunt death with confidence.
a. Death has lost its sting for those who trust in Christ.
b. Death has no victory over those who belong to Him.
3. Death loses the game.
Conclusion:
Have you placed Faith in the Resurrected One.
The Living Lord transforms us from victims to victors.
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