Westlake Community Baptist Church
He is Risen!
- Low In The Grave He Lay (Christ Arose)
- Glorious Day
- Death Was Arrested
- King Of Kings
- Because He Lives
- Oh The Blood
- Was it not necessary?13 That very day two of them were going to a village named Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem, 14 and they were talking with each other about all these things that had happened. 15 While they were talking and discussing together, Jesus himself drew near and went with them. 16 But their eyes were kept from recognizing him. 17 And he said to them, “What is this conversation that you are holding with each other as you walk?” And they stood still, looking sad. 18 Then one of them, named Cleopas, answered him, “Are you the only visitor to Jerusalem who does not know the things that have happened there in these days?” 19 And he said to them, “What things?” And they said to him, “Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, a man who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people, 20 and how our chief priests and rulers delivered him up to be condemned to death, and crucified him. 21 But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel. Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since these things happened. 22 Moreover, some women of our company amazed us. They were at the tomb early in the morning, 23 and when they did not find his body, they came back saying that they had even seen a vision of angels, who said that he was alive. 24 Some of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but him they did not see.” 25 And he said to them, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?” 27 And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself. 28 So they drew near to the village to which they were going. He acted as if he were going farther, 29 but they urged him strongly, saying, “Stay with us, for it is toward evening and the day is now far spent.” So he went in to stay with them. 30 When he was at table with them, he took the bread and blessed and broke it and gave it to them. 31 And their eyes were opened, and they recognized him. And he vanished from their sight. 32 They said to each other, “Did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road, while he opened to us the Scriptures?” 33 And they rose that same hour and returned to Jerusalem. And they found the eleven and those who were with them gathered together, 34 saying, “The Lord has risen indeed, and has appeared to Simon!” 35 Then they told what had happened on the road, and how he was known to them in the breaking of the bread.The Resurrection of ChristThe Gospel is not complete without the resurrection. The resurrection was so important that Paul concluded that if it had not occurred, we are hopeless. The New Testament writers were very clear that was Jesus is alive. Today we celebrate a pivotal moment in history to which we declare that we have reason to follow a risen Christ and believe in Him. The story we read about concerns two disciples who encounter Jesus. Their testimony is that they spoke with the risen Savior.We should be very clear in what we mean by the resurrection. First, we must determine if Jesus was really dead. Resurrection can not occur if one is not truly dead. The gospels verify that it was a simple fact that Jesus died on the cross on that day. He was not playing dead. Rome knew how to kill people. It was one of the ways they used to protect and expand the empire. They were experts of death. And the cross was just one of their ways to end life. They tortured him to the brink of death, but not all the way because they reserved that for the final hours of the cross. By breaking the legs of the person on the cross, they ensured that it would be increasingly difficult to breathe. Each breath required a person to push themselves up with their legs. People died of the inability to breathe. Add to that the piercing of the side. The religious leaders of the day were very concerned that the disciples would fake a resurrection by taking the body away. So we today can conclude that Jesus died upon the cross.Resurrection is to become alive after death. We must be careful to recognize that some people have near-death experiences, mostly in controlled environments such as a hospital or a preserving medium that is very cold. However, none of these occur after three days, prepared for burial and encased in a tomb.Scriptures tell us that each member of the Trinity raised Jesus from the dead.God, The Father - Acts 3:15Jesus, The Son - John 10:17-18The Holy Spirit - Romans 1:4Scripture tells us that Jesus is alive!Disillusioned FollowersLuke is very clear in his gospel, that Jesus was a prophet, but so much more. He spoke the words of God to the people of his day. And he clearly stated, multiple times, that he would die and resurrect after three days. But not all were willing to entrust themselves to those words.Cleopas and the other traveler were people who had followed Christ’s ministry. They had heard Christ’s words and teaching. They knew him. They were not simply part of the crowd but dedicated followers of Christ. They had seen him, yet they did not recognize him at first because God intended for them not to see with their eyes just yet. They needed to have their spiritual eyes opened before the physical eyes.The term “were hoping”, implies they had stopped their hoping. They no longer held to the promises of Christ because three days had passed, and nothing happened. Their hope was for a restoration of Israel to the old glory under King David. But they had misunderstood the purpose of Christ’s redemption for Israel. The kingdom was not just a physical location but a worldwide reality. Jesus was to be the Lord over all things. All things would be put under his feet. He would be king of an eternal kingdom that would exist in the lives of all people who believed.But the timing was off because “The Jews had a tradition that the spirit stayed near the body for three days, but beyond this period no resuscitation was possible.”Utley, Robert James. The Gospel according to Luke. Volume 3A. Marshall, TX: Bible Lessons International, 2004. Print. Study Guide Commentary Series.Although they were sad and disillusioned, God was gracious to reveal to these two travelers how good and great Jesus Christ is.A Cure for Disillusionment: Word of GodJesus calls them "foolish" and "slow of heart to believe." The term foolish implies that they had sufficient information to make a logical conclusion based upon Jesus' words but still didn’t believe. Jesus made it clear that their problem was their unwillingness to accept Christ's word as reliable and true. Christ had to suffer the death upon the cross. He had to endure the pain and shame because it was part of God's plan to take upon himself the sins of all people that they may believe and find a restored relationship with God.But the suffering was only part of the plan. It was necessary, but it was not the end of the promises. After death comes the glory. There was more to come. The resurrection was a step that would reveal that Jesus was true to His word.And at this point in the story, Jesus took time to give these two people a Bible study in the Old Testament. Jesus helped them to understand that they had failed to connect the dots of the Bible and the words of Christ. But Jesus graciously took time to show them the Word of God so that they would once again begin to trust the Word. And though they didn't verbalize it right away, they felt some burning sensation at the center of their lives when Jesus opened up the scriptures. The Word of God was working in their hearts.Breaking Bread with ChristThe moment of revelation occurs with them recognizing the table fellowship of Christ. The ministry of Jesus was marked with many instances of eating. And the book of Revelation's message to the church of Laodicea is a call for them to recognize the knock at the door, for the Lord desires to come in and eat with them. And later in chapter 19, there is the revelation of the Lamb's marriage supper to his bride, the Church. God desires to have us eat a meal together. The meal implies that we are in a close personal relationship.The two travelers had the opportunity to hear once again and see what they had obviously seen before. They began to realize that the one with whom they ate had a pattern of fellowship. They began to recognize the familiar words and actions of the loving Savior. Like hearing an old familiar song and reliving past memories, they sensed the presence of Christ once again. Their eyes were opened, and they recognized Jesus.Upon full recognition of Jesus, the Savior vanished before their eyes. And they shared their experience with each other. But they knew they had to do something with this experience. They heard about the women at the tomb, and now they had received the kind of supernatural revelation concerning Jesus. He has risen. They were so convinced that they had to go back to Jerusalem to tell the other disciples and confirm the reports of the women and Peter. It was Jesus.Today, we celebrate the Resurrection of Christ because it is part of the foundation of what we believe. If you don't recognize the Resurrection as fact, what hinders you from belief? Yes, it is amazing to comprehend and measure with a particular degree of scientific verification. But we have reliable testimony. We also should recognize that this is typical of God and his work. He does all things that confound our modern understanding. He created the world by the word of His mouth. We have the Bible, which tells of His mighty acts. How is your understanding of God's Word?
The Bible is divine revelation, not human discovery. Spiritual truth is a gift from God to blinded, sinful humanity.The Blessings of the ResurrectionThe reality of New CreationA God who makes promises and keeps themThe blessing of His Presence in Table FellowshipBecause He LivesThe resurrection is part of the confidence that we have in God. It is part of Paul’s prayer to the believers at Ephesus.15 For this reason, because I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, 16 I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, 17 that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, 18 having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, 19 and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might 20 that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, 21 far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. 22 And he put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church, 23 which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.He prayed that each believer would know about the hope of Christ. He prayed that they would know about the riches of our inheritance in Christ and experience the power of God through the resurrection. When we understand and entrust ourselves to God, we can experience confidence that defies our disillusionment. Because He lives, we can face tomorrow and all fear can be gone!
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