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Come Alive

Easter 2019  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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Come Alive: The Power to Change Your Life
Easter Sunday:
Easter Sunday:
Good Morning and Welcome to the most wonderful celebration of the year. Today we celebrate together the power of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. More than two thousand years ago, God’s plan of redemption altered the world forever. The power of sin and death was broken through the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ that first Easter. Death was defeated. True life, spiritual life, God’s life triumphed.
Today we celebrate! Jesus is alive, and through His resurrection, we come alive to His power to change our lives and to transform each one of us into a new creation.
You may be thinking, “I don’t know if I have the power to change.” “I just don’t know if I have the power to change my attitude or my outlook on life.” Or, “I don’t know if I have the strength to continue on in this marriage.” Or, “I don’t know if I have the ability to break this addiction.” Or, “I don’t know if I can truly forgive this person who has hurt me.” Or, “I don’t have the power to love my enemies.” “I don’t know if I have the power to live the life Jesus is calling me to live; I don’t know if I have the power to change my life.”
The good news today is that you don’t have the power to change and transform your life, to become a new creation, to live the life Jesus is calling you to live.
That’s why we need a Savior! And that’s the good news of Easter!
You may be wondering, “How in the world is that good news?”
Jesus Christ, the Son of God, came to earth in the flesh to live among us, to show us how to live. He then took our sins upon Himself and died for them on a cross, defeating the power that sin and death had over us by raising from the dead three days later!
And as a result of the resurrection, every person who has received Jesus as their personal Lord and Savior now has the power of God within them, not only to change their life but to live a victorious, abundant life. That’s what Easter is all about!
In the New Testament, the Apostle Paul, a man who actually persecuted Christians and then experienced a radical life change through an encounter with Jesus, knew that his life depended on Jesus and the power of the resurrection. Listen to what he said:
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Philippians 3:10 NIV
I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death,
That was the goal of Paul’s life—to know Jesus and to know the power of His resurrection in his everyday life. Paul’s ability to get through every day was dependent on Jesus and His power living through him.
That was the goal of Paul’s life—to know Jesus and to know the power of His resurrection in his everyday life. Paul’s ability to get through every day was dependent on Jesus and His power living through him.
And Paul wanted this same thing so badly for his friends as well. Listen to how he prayed for his friends in the church of Ephesus:
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Ephesians 1:19–20 NLT
I also pray that you will understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe him. This is the same mighty power that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms.
Think about this! The same power that raised Jesus from the dead and now gives Him the ability and authority to rule over the universe is available to you and me.
Think about this! The same power that raised Jesus from the dead and now gives Him the ability and authority to rule over the universe is available to you and me.
And the Apostle Paul said, “I want to know it! Give me a piece of that! It’s my goal in life to know Christ and to know the power of His resurrection.” And he prayed that we would know it as well.
And the Apostle Paul said, “I want to know it! Give me a piece of that! It’s my goal in life to know Christ and to know the power of His resurrection.” And he prayed that we would know it as well.
The good news of Easter is that Jesus Christ not only died for your sins and offers you forgiveness today, but that same power that raised Him from the dead two thousand years ago is available to change your life right now.
What Is Resurrection Power?
It’s the Power to Cancel Out Your Past, Present, and Future Sins
So many people walk through life carrying around the weight and burden of their past failures, their past mistakes, and their past sins. They become overwhelmed by regret over the past.
When I say “cancel out your past,” I’m not talking about denying it or saying it never happened. Cancel means to eliminate, to remove, or to delete.
Have you ever gotten halfway through a project and thought, this is right. I can work with wood, but and artist I am not. I can remember working on this drawing in middle school art class, the more I drew the worse it got. I just need to start over with a clean piece of paper.
A lot of people feel that way about life. “I just wish that I could start over. I’ve made so many mistakes. There are so many failures, problems, and bad decisions. I just wish I could hit the delete button and start over.”
Some people can’t seem to let go of their past, and as a result they let their past control their present and dictate their future. They live in a constant state of regret. They continually second-guess themselves because they’re tortured by painful memories.
God says, “That’s unnecessary. You don’t have to walk around with a heavy load of guilt, old hurts, and painful memories.”
How can that be?
Listen for a moment to what has happened as a result of the death and the resurrection of Jesus. Paul said,
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Colossians 2:13–14 NLT
You were dead because of your sins and because your sinful nature was not yet cut away. Then God made you alive with Christ, for he forgave all our sins. He canceled the record of the charges against us and took it away by nailing it to the cross.
Let me say that again: Christ has done away with the record of charges against you by nailing it to the cross.
Let me say that again: Christ has done away with the record of charges against you by nailing it to the cross.
This verse says, “He forgave all our sins.” What is sin? Sin is an archery term. It is bows and arrows. Sin doesn’t just mean to shoot and miss the target with our lives; it means to turn our backs and shoot in every direction except for the target. We completely ignore the true target of pleasing God with our lives, and we set our sights on seductive targets that don’t save us or satisfy us; they actually make us feel miserable and empty.
Here’s the good news: God offers complete forgiveness. He says that He cancels every record of the charges against us and He forgives them all. The words that God uses in the Bible to describe how He forgives us are words like “blot out,” “wipe out,” “washed away,” “canceled.” That means our sins are not only forgiven, but they are forgotten.
That doesn’t mean Jesus doesn’t know the sins that you have committed. It just means He didn’t come to rub them in; He came to rub them out. He didn’t come to condemn you; He came to change you by saving you from your sins. John told us,
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John 3:17 ESV
For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.
Do you remember Etch A Sketch. You drew something with the knobs, and when you messed up, what did you do? You flipped it over and shook it to wipe the slate clean, and then you started over.
One of my favorite toys growing up was an Etch A Sketch. You drew something with the knobs, and when you messed up, what did you do? You flipped it over and shook it to wipe the slate clean, and then you started over.
The Bible says that God has the ability—because of the sacrifice of Jesus, His death and resurrection—to take all of the messes and sins and regrets in your life and wipe them clean. That happens at the moment we trust Him alone to be our Savior.
But it gets even better than that.
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**“Just read this”=> For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.
Jeremiah 31:34 ESV
And no longer shall each one teach his neighbor and each his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the Lord. For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.”
That has to be one of the most amazing verses in the whole Bible. God, who made the whole world and everything in it, chooses to forget my wrongs, my mistakes, my past failures, and my sins, He cancels my past.
For those of you who are here today and have been baptized into Christ at some point in your past but are limping through life in sin, the same thing applies. When you come back to Him and confess that Jesus is Lord, He receives you, forgives you, wipes the slate clean, and cancels those sins off your record.
How can God do this? What is the basis for this kind of forgiveness?
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Romans 8:1 ESV
There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
When Jesus Christ died on the cross, one of the last thing He said from the cross was, “It is finished.”[1] In the Greek, those three words are actually one word. It literally means “paid in full.” Canceled!
When Jesus Christ died on the cross, one of the last thing He said from the cross was, “It is finished.”[1] In the Greek, those three words are actually one word. It literally means “paid in full.” Canceled!
God says that’s what Jesus did on the cross—He paid for every sin you’ve ever committed. He stamps “paid in full” across each one. That’s why there is no condemnation for you.
He canceled our past sins and failures and mistakes.
So the first thing this resurrection power gives us is
the Power to Cancel Out Your Past, Present, and Future Sins
What Is Resurrection Power?
It’s the Power to Give You a New Identity
What’s an identity? An identity is something that defines you.
In our culture, we define ourselves by our race, our religion, our political party affiliation, our sexual orientation, our gender. We find our identity in our occupation, our hobbies, or maybe where we went to school, or even in our looks, our clothes, or whom we are dating or married to.
Sometimes people have a hidden identity that shapes their lives and their decisions—an addiction; a weight issue; a health issue; living with the label “adopted,” “divorced,” or “poor”; or maybe they don’t feel very smart or they feel unwanted or unloved.
Identities are so much about what we do or what we’ve done, our successes and failures, and what others have done to us.
The resurrection brought with it the power to change all of that!
Because Jesus conquered sin and death, we don’t have to be defined any longer by our sinful failures, our past mistakes, or even what others think about us. Our identities can now be shaped by God’s success in conquering our sinful failures and His ability to give us new life.
When we come to God and put our faith in Jesus Christ alone as our personal Savior and receive His gift of salvation, look at the words that God uses to describe us: friend of God, blessed, loved, new creation, saint, disciple . . . and this one is my favorite:
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John 1:12 ESV
But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God,
I am a child of God! Out of His grace, He has adopted me into His family and says, “Call Me Father! That’s your new identity. You are My child, and I am your Dad!” I am His, and He is mine!
I am a child of God! Out of His grace, He has adopted me into His family and says, “Call Me Father! That’s your new identity. You are My child, and I am your Daddy!” I am His, and He is mine!
You may be thinking, “How do I know that this is true?”
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2 Corinthians 1:22 NLT
and he has identified us as his own by placing the Holy Spirit in our hearts as the first installment that guarantees everything he has promised us.
What this means is that you can let go of any image of yourself that is not from God. You can stop accepting what others have said about you, how others have labeled you, how you have labeled yourself, and how others have defined you. And you can start believing what God says about you—you are His child and He is your Father. That’s how He defines you!
What this means is that you can let go of any image of yourself that is not from God. You can stop accepting what others have said about you, how others have labeled you, how you have labeled yourself, and how others have defined you. And you can start believing what God says about you—you are His child and He is your Father. That’s how He defines you!
When you are a child of God, you are not defined by your feelings. You’re not defined by the opinions of others or by your circumstances. You’re not defined by your successes and failures. You’re not defined by the car you drive, the money you make, or the house you own. You are defined by God and God alone—and He identities you as His own!
The thing is, if you don’t know who you are, you’re vulnerable to other people telling you who you are. But here’s the truth: “You are who God says you are, and no else gets to have a say in the matter.”
I love this quote from Tim Keller: “The only person in the universe whose opinion counts looks at me and He finds me more valuable than all the jewels in creation.”
Because of the power of the resurrection, you are now identified with Christ and you have the power of the Holy Spirit within you. He has given you a new identity
What else is this resurrection power?
It’s the Power to Fill You with Strength to Face the Challenges of Each Day
Here’s one of the most powerful truths you will ever hear about Jesus: We are not only saved by His death, but we are also saved by His life. That means that a risen Jesus lives inside of us by His Holy Spirit.
His divinity inhabits your humanity! That means you can face each day in the strength of a risen Savior.
Regardless of what happens to you, whatever difficulties you might face, whatever curveball life may throw at you, you have the power to stand in there and face it.
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Galatians 2:20 ESV
I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
Think of the prospect of having a risen Jesus living His life out through your life. The possibilities are endless!
Think of the prospect of having a risen Jesus living His life out through your life. The possibilities are endless!
Here’s something I’ve learned about life—it’s unpredictable. One minute you feel like you’re sailing along and everything is going fine, and the next moment you’re dealing with a crisis. Life is full of stress, heartache, disappointments, setbacks, trials, and tragedies.
How in the world can we face these twists and turns, these roadblocks, or even these life-altering dead ends? It’s the power of a risen Christ in our lives sustaining us through His Holy Spirit and sometimes carrying us with His grace and power.
Listen to what the Apostle Paul said:
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Romans 8:11 ESV
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.
That means the Holy Spirit of God, the One who was involved in creation, the One who came upon the disciples at Pentecost like a mighty rushing wind, the One who raised Jesus Christ from the dead, has been given to you for daily life!
I think about people like Debra and Joseph married in the church. They both had plans for what their lives were going to look like. They both got divorces, God brought them together and now they help other people hurting from divorce. Through God’s power they are living resurrected lives.
That means the Holy Spirit of God, the One who was involved in creation, the One who came upon the disciples at Pentecost like a mighty rushing wind, the One who raised Jesus Christ from the dead, has been given to you for daily life!
Or Curtis Busack, he had a long history of addiction and by the power of God he has been healed. Now every Thursday night he leads an addiction group helping other men.
God’s holy spirit is amazing and it is what helps us live a life for God. So how do you get that spirit inside of you? tells us. Peter is preaching for the first time after Jesus has died, been buried and raised from the Dead. He goes through some of the prophecies about Jesus and tells the story and ends with it this
We have a wonderful couple in our church who was hit with a tragedy in April 2014. I want you to hear how this couple has been able to make it through one of the worst possible situations you could imagine.
Acts 2:36–39 NIV
“Therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Messiah.” When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.”
If Jesus hadn’t risen from the dead, Chris and Jamie would not have had the power to handle all that they have been through—the shooting, fifty-four surgeries, all of the setbacks, hundreds of days in the hospital, months without eating, the many, many dark moments wondering if Chris was going to make it.
The promise is for you, all who are far off, 2000 years later and the promise is still true, the sprit is still available.
But because Jesus rose from the dead and conquered the grave, the “sustaining grace” power was there to carry Chris and Jamie through each twist and turn. And it will be there in the future.
Just this morning, Chris made the decision to make Jesus Lord and to be baptized in Christ. He wanted to get baptized in a River so first thing this morning He was made new in Christ.
Video of Baptism
Then on Good Friday Ali Garcia was restored. She was baptized as a teen wandered from God and decided to come back to God and make Jesus lord again.
And Here’s a great promise: The Bible tells us that we are more than conquerors through Him who loves us. And that nothing—not trouble or hardship or danger—will be able to separate you from that love of Jesus!
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Romans 8:38–39 ESV
For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
How can that be? We serve a resurrected Savior who still operates in resurrection power! And He promises to fill you with that same power to give you strength to face the challenges of each day.
How can that be? We serve a resurrected Savior who still operates in resurrection power! And He promises to fill you with that same power to give you strength to face the challenges of each day.
What does the resurrection mean to you today? For some people, it’s just an ancient event.
Well, people have looked into the tomb, and nobody’s home. He’s not there. Christ is alive! Many of you are desperate to make a change in your life. Because He is alive, He gives you the power to change. He will give you the power to get started, and He’ll give you the power to keep going.
But here’s the truth: You can’t do it alone! You can’t do it in your own strength. You don’t have the power to do it on your own. You were made to depend on Jesus!
Some of you can’t let go of your past failures and mistakes. Jesus Christ offers forgiveness. He promises to cancel your sins and wash them clean off your record. He offers you a chance to start over!
Some of you feel like a failure, a loser, or a has-been. Maybe your identity is wrapped up in what you have done or what has been done to you. God offers you the chance to have a new identity. He wants to bring you into His family and give you a new title—accepted, forgiven, loved child of God.
Some of you feel powerless over the challenges you are facing right now. What if you had the power of the Holy Spirit in your life, giving you peace, giving you strength, giving you the power to face those issues head-on—the power to change your situation?
Romans 6:1–5 NIV
What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his.
If you want to come alive, if you want to live the resurrected life, sit down with someone who invited, or maybe you are watching online. Grab your phone and text into to get some more info about the church.
Text Welcome to 720-571-8979
We want to help you come alive in each and every area of your life!.
The resurrection means that no situation is too hopeless! No problem is too big for Jesus! He’s still in the resurrection business—and He has the power to change your life!
[1] (esv).
Let’s pray and take communion together to remember what Jesus has done and the resurrection power we have in Jesus!
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