Jesus died but that was not the end. The apparent end was the beginning of new life. This day we celebrate the wonder of the resurrection.
Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again.
This weekend at Eastbrook Church I gave a message entitled “Beginning to Live” about how the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus opens a new way to live our lives. It is a way of purpose, freedom, and joy.
When a person dies, there is a sudden and unsettling stillness that settles into their body. It feels and looks unnatural because there is an utter stillness. Unlike sleep, where the rhythm of breathing usually conveys a peaceful and restorative rest, the stillness of death seems harsh.
Jesus died on the cross. His brutalized body hung limp and bent at awkward angles; suspended by nails that tore the skin. His side was pierced and watery blood flowed out.
Two secret followers worked hard to remove His body from that instrument of cruel torture. They expended the effort to bury Him with dignity. It was likely a messy experience.Read More »
Jesus walked into Jerusalem hailed as a king. Within a few days, the crowd was calling for His execution: “Take Him away! Take Him away! Crucify Him!” (John 19:15).
A thorny crown fiercely adorned His kingly head (19:2). Purple robes signaled His royalty as soldiers spit on Him, slapped Him and mocked Him (19:3). But the only throne given to this King was a rough and brutal wooden cross (19:18). They raised Him up on it for all the world to see. A sign saying “Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews” displayed His identity in mocking irony (19:19).
Weak and pitiful, naked and bloody, thirsty andRead More »
My message from this past Good Friday, “Voices at the Cross,” has now been posted online so that you can listen to it here.
When Jesus began His journey to the Cross, He was surrounded by voices.
There were the fickle voices of the crowd.
There were the betraying and denying voices of the disciples.
There were the accusing voices of the chief priests.
There were the self-willed voices of Pontius Pilate and King Herod.
There were the mocking voices of the those watching the crucifixion.
There was the stinging voice of the Evil One.
But there was a deeper and stronger voice.
This past weekend at Eastbrook Church, I continued our series “Light for the City” by exploring the theme of resurrection found in 1 Corinthians 15.
I found this to be one of the most interesting messages that I have prepared for recently largely because it is not something we talk about often in the church, other than at Easter or in funerals. But for the Apostle Paul, resurrection is central to the gospel and, in fact, makes our faith hold together.
Here are two questions that I sought to answer in my message:
- Why is it that the Apostle Paul’s hope is not in heaven but in the resurrection?
- Why is resurrection so important for us today?
I structure the message around six main movements:
- We must remember the resurrection (1 Cor 15:1-11)
- We need to hold onto the resurrection (1 Cor 15:12-19)
- We should hope in the resurrection (1 Cor 15:20-28)
- We need to understand the resurrection (1 Cor 15:35-49)
- We must live in light of the resurrection (1 Cor 15:29-34, 58; 6:19-20)
- We should celebrate the resurrection (1 Cor 15:50-57)
You can listen to my message and access the bulletin outline for it at the Eastbrook web-site here. You could subscribe to the Eastbrook podcast here.