the standard greeting of the early church. Whenever two Christians
would meet they would remember the glorious fact that Jesus rose from
the dead, that He proved that He was who he said He was, that He had
authority in heaven and on Earth, that He had authority over death,
hell and the grave. Whenever they would meet, one would greet the
other with "He is risen!" and the other would respond,
"He is risen indeed!" What a glorious greeting.
message is entitled
Risen! He is Risen Indeed!
Bow our Hearts before the Lord
we come before you, in awe of the promise you fulfilled in your life,
death, and resurrection from the dead. Thank you Lord for the hope
you've given us, that after our brief time on this world is over,
there awaits for us an eternal destiny beyond all that we can dream.
Thank you Lord, for loving us so much that you would not be in heaven
without us, that you would come to the Earth to teach us, then lay
down your life willingly to save us, and then to rise from the dead
to be our great high priest and intercessor. Thank you Lord for
offering salvation as a free gift to all who would believe. Lord we
believe. Help us to lay hold of the promise, and turn our lives to
you. Help us Lord to follow you, and worship you today. Help us lay
aside every weight that hinders us, that we may run the race you have
set before us, and win the prize you have for us at the end of the
race. Jesus, we lift you up today, and we remember. Today we
celebrate. In Jesus name, for your honor and glory. Amen
resurrection of Jesus Christ is the central event in human history.
It is the
fulfillment of God's redemptive plan for mankind, foretold in
prophecy throughout the Old Testament, from Genesis, through Malachi.
From the sin of Adam, mankind was separated from God, and God, in His
love began a series of events which ended in our reconciliation with
Him. The Old Testament is the story of His redemptive plan for
mankind. Throughout the Old Testament God carefully lays out His
plan, which we see unfold through the lives of the patriarchs, the
prophets, the kings, and people. The lives we see recounted either
are directly in the lineage of Jesus, or are symbolic of His life and
sacrifice, and resurrection. The Psalms of David, the writings of
Moses, Isaiah, Daniel, Zechariah, Malachi, and the rest, and indeed
the amazing story of Jonah are all prophetic, they point to Jesus,
and His mission on Earth, to His death, and to His resurrection.
excerpts from David's Psalms:
proclaim the decree of the LORD: He said to me, "You are my Son;
today I have become your Father. - Psalm 2:7 (NIV)
my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will rest
secure, because you will not abandon me to the grave, nor will you
let your Holy One see decay. - Psalm 16:9-10 (NIV)
a lot to say about the Resurrection of the Redeemer, and of our resurrection:
"It is too small a thing for you to be my servant to restore the
tribes of Jacob and bring back those of Israel I have kept. I will
also make you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring my
salvation to the ends of the earth." This is what the LORD
says-- the Redeemer and Holy One of Israel-- to him who was despised
and abhorred by the nation, to the servant of rulers: "Kings
will see you and rise up, princes will see and bow down, because of
the LORD, who is faithful, the Holy One of Israel, who has chosen
you."- Isaiah 49:6-7NIV)
through, pass through the gates! Prepare the way for the people.
Build up, build up the highway! Remove the stones. Raise a banner for
the nations. The LORD has made proclamation to the ends of the earth:
"Say to the Daughter of Zion, 'See, your Savior comes! See, his
reward is with him, and his recompense accompanies him.'" -
Isaiah 62:10-11 (NIV)
Redeemer will come to Zion, to those in Jacob who repent of their
sins," declares the LORD. - Isaiah 59:20 (NIV)
dead will live; their bodies will rise. You who dwell in the dust,
wake up and shout for joy. Your dew is like the dew of the morning;
the earth will give birth to her dead. - Isaiah 26:19 (NIV)
favorite passage in the entire Bible: It's Isaiah 53:3-12. Every time
I read this I get shivers up and down my spine. Nowhere in the
scripture is a more eloquent description of what Jesus went through
to save us:
despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with
suffering. Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised,
and we esteemed him not. Surely he took up our infirmities and
carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten
by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he
was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace
was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed. We all, like sheep,
have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the LORD
has laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed and
afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to
the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so he
did not open his mouth. By oppression and judgment he was taken away.
And who can speak of his descendants? For he was cut off from the
land of the living; for the transgression of my people he was
stricken. He was assigned a grave with the wicked, and with the rich
in his death, though he had done no violence, nor was any deceit in
his mouth. Yet it was the LORD's will to crush him and cause him to
suffer, and though the LORD makes his life a guilt offering, he will
see his offspring and prolong his days, and the will of the LORD will
prosper in his hand. After the suffering of his soul, he will see the
light [of life] and be satisfied; by his knowledge my righteous
servant will justify many, and he will bear their iniquities.
Therefore I will give him a portion among the great, and he will
divide the spoils with the strong, because he poured out his life
unto death, and was numbered with the transgressors. For he bore the
sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors. - Isaiah
powerful testimony of the sacrifice of Jesus, of His death, His
burial, and His resurrection, and this was written 700 years before
the words of Jeremiah:
days are coming," declares the LORD, "when I will raise up
to David a righteous Branch, a King who will reign wisely and do what
is just and right in the land. In his days Judah will be saved and
Israel will live in safety. This is the name by which he will be
called: The LORD Our Righteousness.- Jeremiah 23:5-6 (NIV)
words of Daniel:
my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son
of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient
of Days and was led into his presence. He was given authority, glory
and sovereign power; all peoples, nations and men of every language
worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not
pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed. -
Daniel 7:13-14 (NIV)
O high priest Joshua and your associates seated before you, who are
men symbolic of things to come: I am going to bring my servant, the
Branch. See, the stone I have set in front of Joshua! There are seven
eyes on that one stone, and I will engrave an inscription on it,'
says the LORD Almighty, 'and I will remove the sin of this land in a
single day. - Zechariah 3:8-9 (NIV)
that day a fountain will be opened to the house of David and the
inhabitants of Jerusalem, to cleanse them from sin and impurity. -
Zechariah 13:1 (NIV)
death, burial, and resurrection were the purpose of His ministry on Earth.
Crucifixion was not a surprise to Jesus. It was a climax of His
ministry, and everything He said and everything did led to the cross.
But it did not end at the cross. He knew that He was the Lamb of God,
the sacrifice for the salvation of mankind. He preached good news to
the poor. He healed the sick. He raised the dead. He taught and
rebuked and corrected and spoke the truth in love, but the cross was
always before Him, and after that the resurrection from the dead. He
spoke plainly of the cross, and of His rising from the dead. These
were events that were going to happen, and He planned His ministry
around those events.
reminded His disciples of the events of the Old testament that were
prophetic of what He was about to fulfill in the immediate future. In
the most familiar verse of the Bible, John 3:16, Jesus reminded them
of the bronze snake Moses erected in the wilderness that saved all
the people who were bitten by venomous snakes because of God's wrath.
It was a prophetic symbol that He was to fulfill in the salvation of mankind:
is in Numbers 21:9,
made a bronze snake and put it up on a pole. Then when anyone was
bitten by a snake and looked at the bronze snake, he lived. - Numbers
as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert, so the Son of Man must
be lifted up, that everyone who believes in him may have eternal
life. "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only
Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal
life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the
world, but to save the world through him. - John 3:14-17 (NIV)
is the time for judgment on this world; now the prince of this world
will be driven out. But I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will
draw all men to myself." - John 12:31-32 (NIV)
reminded them of Jonah, who was in a huge fish for three days, then
was vomited out and after that the whole city of Nineveh repented and
as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of a huge
fish, so the Son of Man will be three days and three nights in the
heart of the earth. - Matt 12:40 (NIV)
the Pharisees and Scribes for asking Him for a miraculous sign from
heaven to validate His authority, citing the events in Jonah. He said:
wicked and adulterous generation looks for a miraculous sign, but
none will be given it except the sign of Jonah." Jesus
then left them and went away. - Matt 16:4 (NIV)
men of Nineveh will stand up at the judgment with this generation
and condemn it; for they repented at the preaching of Jonah, and now
one greater than Jonah is here." - Matt 12:41 (NIV)
them of the manna that God sent from heaven to feed the people of
Israel who were wandering in the desert for 40 years. It also was a
sign to the generations of what Jesus would do for them. Jesus said:
am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of
this bread, he will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I
will give for the life of the world." - John 6:51 (NIV)
them examples from their everyday lives - of the shepherds in the
field. He said:
am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.
- John 10:11 (NIV)
even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to
give his life as a ransom for many." - Mark 10:45 (NIV)
that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples that he must go
to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders, chief
priests and teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and on
the third day be raised to life. - Matt 16:21 (NIV)
are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be betrayed to
the chief priests and the teachers of the law. They will condemn him
to death and will turn him over to the Gentiles to be mocked and
flogged and crucified. On the third day he will be raised to life!"
- Matt 20:18-19 (NIV)
long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me.
Because I live, you also will live. - John 14:19 (NIV)
they came together in Galilee, he said to them, "The
Son of Man is going to be betrayed into the hands of men. They will
kill him, and on the third day he will be raised to life."
And the disciples were filled with grief. - Matt 17:22-23 (NIV)
made plans around the resurrection.
Just a few
hours before His arrest in Gethsemene, He told His disciples what
would happen that night, that the disciples would be scattered, but
that He will rise from the dead and meet them in Galilee. He told them:
is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the
forgiveness of sins. I tell you, I will not drink of this fruit of
the vine from now on until that day when I drink it anew with you in
my Father's kingdom." When they had sung a hymn, they went out
to the Mount of Olives. Then Jesus told them, "This very night
you will all fall away on account of me, for it is written: "'I
will strike the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be
scattered.' But after I have risen, I will go ahead of you into Galilee."
- Matthew 26:28-32 (NIV)
resurrection really happened.
Just as it
was foretold in the Old Testament, just as Jesus proclaimed it as a
eminent event in His ministry, on Easter morning, Jesus rose from the
dead! Each Gospel gives an account of the resurrection, and since
each was written from a different perspective, each gives unique
details to the record of the event. Here's an ordering of the accounts:
the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and
the other Mary went to look at the tomb. There was a violent
earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going
to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was
like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. The guards were
so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men. The angel
said to the women, "Do not be afraid, for I know that you are
looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; he has risen,
just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. Then go quickly
and tell his disciples: 'He has risen from the dead and is going
ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him.' Now I have told
you." So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled
with joy, and ran to tell his disciples. Suddenly Jesus met them. "Greetings,"
he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him. Then
Jesus said to them, "Do not be afraid. Go and
tell my br others to go to Galilee; there they will see me."
While the women were on their way, some of the guards went into the
city and reported to the chief priests everything that had happened.
- Matt 28:1-11 (NIV)
however, got up and ran to the tomb. Bending over, he saw the strips
of linen lying by themselves, and he went away, wondering to himself
what had happened. - Luke 24:12 (NIV)
the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside.
He saw and believed. (They still did not understand from Scripture
that Jesus had to rise from the dead.) - John 20:9 (NIV)
same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about
seven miles from Jerusalem. They were talking with each other about
everything that had happened. As they talked and discussed these
things with each other, Jesus himself came up and walked along with
them; but they were kept from recognizing him. - Luke 24:13-16 (NIV)
The two men
were sad and told Jesus about what had happened and that they had
hoped that He was the messiah, but He was crucified. Now some women
said that He was raised from the dead and they didn't know what to think.
to them, "How foolish you are, and how slow of
heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken!
not the Christ have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?"
And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them
what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself. - Luke
opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures. He told
them, "This is what is written: The Christ
will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, and repentance
and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations,
beginning at Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. -
Luke 24:45-48 (NIV)
evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were
together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and
stood among them and said, "Peace be with you!"
After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples
were overjoyed when they saw the Lord. Again Jesus said, "Peace
be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you."
- John 20:19-21 (NIV)
Thomas (called Didymus), one of the Twelve, was not with the
disciples when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, "We
have seen the Lord!" But he said to them, "Unless I see the
nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and
put my hand into his side, I will not believe it." A week later
his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them.
Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and
said, "Peace be with you!"
said to Thomas, "Put your finger here; see my
hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe."
Thomas said to him, "My Lord and my God!" Then Jesus told
him, "Because you have seen me, you have
believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed."
- John 20:24-29 (NIV)
his suffering, he showed himself to these men and gave many
convincing proofs that he was alive. He appeared to them over a
period of forty days and spoke about the kingdom of God. - Acts 1:3 (NIV)
eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had
told them to go. When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some
doubted. Then Jesus came to them and said, "All
authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go
and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the
Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to
obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you
always, to the very end of the age."" - Matt
said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid
him from their sight. They were looking intently up into the sky as
he was going, when suddenly two men dressed in white stood beside
them. "Men of Galilee," they said, "why do you stand
here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from
you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go
into heaven." - Acts 1:9-11 (NIV)
most important event in history happened for you.
to Earth to save you from your sins, to reconcile you to God, to
teach you His ways, to guide you along the path to righteousness. He
came to be pay a debt He did not owe, because you owed a debt you
could not pay. He died on the cross for your sins, and rose from the
dead to sit at the right hand of God, to be your great High Priest,
and to be your Intercessor before God. He lives forever to be your
personal Lord and Savior and God and Friend.
risen! he is risen indeed!
message with someone this week.
Let us pray:
thank you, for your word and your life. Thank you for paying our debt
on the cross, and rising from the dead to give us hope for a future
in heaven with you. Thank you, gracious Lord for saving us from
destruction. Help us, Lord to remember today and always, your love
for us, and the amazing grace you've shown us. That while we were
still sinners and enemies of God, you died for us. You purchased us
with your own blood. Help us Lord Jesus to grab hold of the free gift
you've given us, to love you with all our heart, soul, mind, and
strength. Help us, Lord to share that gift with the lost. Help us,
Lord to be the love of God, the light of the world, and the salt of
the Earth. In your name alone, Lord Jesus, for Your honor and glory.
And everybody said&ldots; Amen
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