Temple Baptist Church - 3-31-2013
A. This morning, we will once again celebrate the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ from the dead. What a glorious morning we read about as Mary, out of whom our Lord cast our 7 devils, came to the garden tomb and found a resurrected Lord as well as an empty tomb. Countless times God’s people have read this account with joy, weeping, and hope!
B. Often called the “Capstone of Christianity” because Jesus Christ was declared to be the Son of God by the bodily resurrection. Only God can give life to the physical body! He breathed life into Adam and all men are born inherently with Adam’s life.
C. Jesus Christ is called the firstfruits of the Resurrection. 1 Corinthians 15:20 But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept.
D. Because of His glorious resurrection, the believer has a blessed hope beyond the grave. John 14:19 Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also.
E. There are several other resurrections mentioned in Scripture and I want to look at them for a few minutes as each has its importance to mankind.
1. There was the resurrection of the Old Testament saints found in Matthew 27: 51-54. These O.T. saints went to Abraham’s Bosom and remained there comforted until the death of our Lord. The Lord went to Abraham’s Bosom and, at the resurrection brought these saints to heaven with him. He brought “captivity captive” and gave gifts to men.
2. There is the resurrection of the believer found in the New Birth (John 3:3-7; Ephesians 2:1; Romans 6:1-6). At the moment of salvation, the believer is born again into the spiritual realm and endowed with a new life in Christ. No resurrection, no New Birth!
3. There will be the resurrection of the bodies of the dead saints at the rapture of the church. (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; 1 Corinthians 15:52-58). When the Lord comes for His church, the body of Christ, those who have died in the Lord will have their bodies resurrected and we will all be changed. We will be given a glorious body like unto His that will be eternal in nature.
4. There will be the resurrection of those believers who are martyred during the Tribulation Period. (Revelation 6:9-11) These will be the souls under the altar crying, “How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?”
5. There will be the resurrection of the “two witnesses” during the Tribulation Period. (Revelation 11:3) These two witnesses will lay dead in the streets of Jerusalem for 3 ½ days and come to life again. They will ascend into heaven is the sight of the world.
6. There will be the resurrection of the unsaved dead at the Great White Throne Judgment. (Revelation 20:11-15) Those who have denied or rejected the Lord will one day stand before Him, be judged according to their works, and be cast alive into a lake of fire for all eternity.
F. The resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead is both the foundation and capstone of our faith. I am excited about the prospect.
1. The Prospect of Eternal Life With Christ! John 14:3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.
2. The Prospect of A New Body. 1 Corinthians 15:51-52 Behold, I shew 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 trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
3. The Prospect of God’s People. Matthew 8:11 And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven.
4. The Prospect of a New Heaven and a New Earth. Revelation 21:1 And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.
5. The Prospect of the New Jerusalem. Revelation 21:2 And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.