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August 6, 2022 4:00 am
Well, it's hard to find anyone who would deny the Jesus was crucified still debate surrounding the reality of his resurrection today on Truth for Life weekend.
Alister beg investigates the bodily resurrection of Jesus from an historical perspective, as he refutes the alternative explanations invited to turn to Luke chapter 24 what I want to do this morning is by way of introduction to what is essentially the subject of the resurrection is to consider with you the resurrection from if you like an historical perspective to ask two very simple questions and make two straightforward observations, and the first question is simply this. Why did Christianity arise and why did it take the shape that it did any student of history knows that careful consideration of the events of the facts of history will call from the student.
I necessary investigation. Now when we read our new Testaments. We need to be reminded that we are dealing here in the realm of history we don't have in the Bible that CDs of atomized proof texts that have been thrown together in clusters so as to give us information that will help us to prop ourselves up as were making our way through our lines, but no, we have been entrusted with material that reflects accurately the way in which these events unfolded, and so to ask the question why did Christianity arise is to ask a very necessary question, although one that we may not have considered some of us may never ever have asked the question is so convinced are we that it did arise and civil familiar are we with the shape that it took that we never actually stood back long enough to say how the world of this even happened so convinced that it happened well in that respect were very many different from the first disciples aren't because these early disciples any hopes that they had and surely they had some had been obliterated by the crucifixion, the events that we've just considered in chapter 23 add close down all their hopes and their dreams. Verse 21 of chapter 24 and is probably the only one of two verses that I'm going to refer to this morning. In this chapter helps us to grapple with. This doesn't Jesus has come on the road to Emmaus and he's linked up with this couple respondent pair as they make their journey, some 7 miles from Jerusalem. They don't realize who it is that has joined them and they're surprised that he is asking the questions he's asking and in the course of answering Jesus questions. One of them says in verse 21 we had hoped, past tense that he was the one who was going to redeem Israel. We had hoped that he was the one who is going to redeem Israel inference clearly being of course we know that he wasn't the one who was going to redeem Israel.
Now again, you just need to look at the material as it's provided for as in the videos Gospels and you will begin to put this together very clearly. John chapter 20 verse 19, John records on the evening of the first day of the week when the disciples were together and then he says, with the doors locked for fear of the Jews. What was this about.
While all their hopes and dreams and come to a dreadful end. We hope that he was the one there's been some use. They said this morning that is come out with some of the women they were.
Apparently they are airily in the morning in the tomb. The are reporting that it was MT Peter shot off he can bag completely confused as to what that might mean, and we left the rest of them sitting chewing the kind in relationship to this in the two advisors decided that shoot off Emmaus.
But frankly really it is a dreadfully sad and hopeless story.
What we need to realize in this is that the expectations of the Jews for the Messiah ship of Jesus were actually more significant than that which many allies bring to the subject, when most of it. I think if we're honest, I consider the notion of Jesus as the Messiah.
We think of it in immediately personal terms. Jesus is the Messiah for me. He's a Messiah who can forgive sins.
He's a Messiah who can come and live in me and give me a new kind of life, all of which of course is true. But if we been moving in the first century. In these early days and talking with the Jewish people who had messianic expectations, we would have discovered that their hopes were far grander than this and essentially if I might summarize them. They were expecting that a Messiah would do for them. Three things that he would defeat the pagans who held the sway over them that he would rebuild the temple, and that he would establish God's just rule upon the air know this of course is something that would run all the way through their history.
Let me give you one Old Testament cross reference and you may turn to it.
If you choose. In Psalm 42 and 43 we have what is an extended poison in the psalmist is calling out to God, the God he has waited patiently for he begins with familiar words that you have considered often as the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, oh God.
My soul thirsts for God, for the living God, and he recounts how he used to enjoy going with the procession of the crowds to the house of God. But now he's cast down. He remembers how it used to be, and he is disappointed by the fact in verse nine that God the rock is apparently forgotten him and he must go about morning now and he's oppressed by the enemy. Then he tries to take himself in check. He says why you cast down on my soul. Why are you so disturbed within me is the kind of material that we tend to turn to when we find a flat tire or when we find that RP arise was, not just what we hoped it might be or when.
Some difficulty is come into our lives, not that it is insignificant but that it is decidedly trivial. In contrast to the thought forms of the psalmist here and you will notice into Psalm 43, the Christ of God for vindication, plead my because he says against an ungodly nation rescue me from deceitful and wicked men pause with you here for a moment and try and bring this into a context that is understandable. Imagine that dad is no talking his children into bed and I think Texas children into bed. He says to them what were going to do is going to read one of the Psalms tonight and he reads with them vindicate me all God and plead my cause against an ungodly nation and rescue me from deceitful and wicked men when his children.
Satan, why is it that the Romans are so obnoxious. Why is it that they overrule eyes and press upon us.
He says well God is our stronghold. It does seem that he is rejected as it does seem that we're going about morning that we are oppressed by the enemy. The children lets before we fall asleep. Ask God hears our prayer tonight. Send forth your light and your truth.
Let them guide me.
Let them bring me to your holy mountain, to the place where you dwell, then I'll go to the altar of God, my joy and my delight, then I will praise you with the heart of God, my God, what were they holding out for what was their whole waterhole was messianic. Their hope was that the Messiah would come and would vindicate his people, and they expected that when the Messiah came, he would do all of this and more. And with the arrival of this Galilean carpenter with the miracles he was performing the stories he was telling the things that he was doing this at all built to a great crescendo of expectation. Admittedly, there were opposing forces, but they might have anticipated that there was confusion even within the ranks of Judaism. The secular authorities joined ranks with others in seeking to bring this Messiah least the apparent Messiah down just when they thought that he was the one to redeem the people of Israel. Just when they thought that he might stand up and defeat the pagans and rebuild the temple and establish justice, they they walk past Calvary and so a sorry sight all their messianic hopes hanging up on a Roman jib and when he cried out that the last diet is finished, many of them must've said absolutely it is finished. Because you see the crucifixion of a Messiah did not see to a first century Jew that he was the Messiah or that the kingdom had come.
In fact, it said exactly the opposite.
It sent to the Jewish mind. He is not the Messiah, and the kingdom is not LME pain.
This, in the clearest of terms, member question, why did Christianity arise and why did it take the shape it did because after all, crucifixion was the final, complete devastation of their hopes. Therefore, begging the question in light of the why then did this first century group of Jews whose messianic hopes had come to a crashing halt buried in a Palestinian to widen this little group not only continue to believe that Jesus was the Messiah, but actually to hit the streets in an unashamed declaration of the same. Why did they do this for the answer which comes it comes Rivera but anything through the pages of the New Testament, the United chorus of the disciples. Is this the reason they did what they did was the fact of the bodily resurrection of Jesus, not the notion that somehow or another. Jesus had been transmuted to heaven, not the idea of a resuscitation, not the idea of a spiritual romance songs, but the actual expectation of a re-embodied resurrected Christ with a body that was both physical and trans physical with a frame that could be seen and handled and touched and yet possess capacities to do what his pre-resurrected body had not done it was this which struck because of the body of Jesus had remained in the tomb. There is absolutely no explanation as to why anyone would have taken seriously his claims to Messiah ship and there is no form of early Christianity that we are introduced to that does apart from a few inventions that are mentioned later, but no serious explication of New Testament Christianity is absent, the affirmation at its heart, that after Jesus shameful death God raised him to life again. What were going to look at in Luke 24 is simply looks provision. His record provided for these early believers so that they might have the information to encourage and bolster their faith of faith in a resurrected Christ meant nothing to turn there, but I commend first Corinthians 15 to you.
You're familiar with that. It is the classic chapter is certainly in Pauline writing on the resurrection and the one thing I want you to note if you read it for your homework later on is that you can't go far into chapter 15 without recognizing that the resurrection is rules and thoroughly into all of Paul's understanding and his practice, and that if you remove the resurrection. Then his whole tapestry of life and faith completely unravels. In other words, the resurrection is not for Saul of Tarsus.
Now Paul resurrection is not for him like like a U-Haul trailer that he is now hitched onto the back of the car of his fee, which may be unhitched without any real detriment.
At least two forward progress. You can take it with you or you can leave it behind you. It doesn't really matter know the resurrection for Paul is absolutely interwoven into the totality of every conviction and fiber of his being concerning his proclamation regarding Jesus and if you take that away and you take it all away. Note you will also notice when you do your home or the Paul is quick to say that what he was what he had received. He passed on, that Christ died for sins, according to the Scriptures, and that he was buried, and that he was raised again on the 30 according to the Scriptures. In other words, this Paul when you take the whole sweep of the Bible and try and make sense of it. You cannot do so without this essential piece of the puzzle, namely the resurrection itself.
I will get to this in Luke 24 because these guys cannot make sense of a good.
We had hoped that he was the one to redeem its real.
We thought he was going to do something here that our lives and everything would be radically changed but apparently not. And then Jesus is the mirror very slow onto to believe all of the profits. Everett Lehman, writer immediately. I haven't really been reading your Bibles if you been reading your Bible properly and then he began to show themů Looks as an beginning at that very place. He began with Moses and the prophets, and he explained to them to them. Everything in the Scriptures concerning himself, a sermon that always were left with her and then in the breaking of bread and says that their eyes were opened and they recognized him and then they said did in our hearts burn within us as he talked with is on the way and as he opened the Scriptures to us.
It was only in the recognition of his risen presence that the story of the Bible made sense. It is quite staggering to me to discover how many clergymen do not believe in the resurrection, and yet stand Sunday by Sunday in front of a congregation, given the bits and pieces out of the Bible. Why bother. Why bother. What is the first question we haven't exhausted it.
I think you'd agree. Some of you don't even understand what I said why did Christianity arise and why did it take the shape it did think about it. Second question, but on their alternative explanations summits as well. II hear what you're saying but I was having a conversation with some of the other day and they met a completely different spin on it altogether. While yes, there are alternative explanations that the question of Jesus resurrection is perennially fascinating and is there is hardly a year passes without somebody doesn't do something in terms of a book the tomb of God or whatever it might be an amalgamation of Gnostic notions and bits and pieces of the Bible all jumbled together enough to confuse people. The very fact that 2000 years on, people are still writing books to refute the resurrection says something in itself doesn't.
You would think that after 2000 years. We can put that to bed that goodness gracious. Nobody cares about that anymore. That's old news.
But no, I just won't go away. Somehow or another.
Well, when you look at these things and you can find them all over the place, you discover that the attempt to disprove the resurrection haven't changed a great deal over the years. There's nothing unique about the risk of being condemned for stating the obvious.
Let me just remind you alternative explanations number one.
The idea that Jesus didn't die that he was not dead Christ and therefore there was no need for resurrection that he just was resuscitated. One of the most recent spends on this is done by a lady called Barbara feeling who suggested that not only did Jesus not die, but neither did the other two men on either side of them die and that one of them was a fellow called Simon Magnus who was actually a doctor and despite the five that he and his buddy had their legs broken. He somehow or another in the two managed to come up with some Madsen which he passed on to Jesus enough for Jesus to get that real orientated and and put together so that he could go out and resume his career.
Now you smile at this but this is the kind of nonsense that our friends and neighbors swallow with their orange juice while at the same time saying how ridiculous to believe in a resurrection so we have to be prepared to say to the world which you think is the most ridiculous because even if that were the case that we would then be forced to confront the issue that the disciples then went out to proclaim the truth on the basis of a gigantic lie that knowing that he hadn't been resurrected, knowing that he had never died. They went out to proclaim this glorious truth that was founded on a false premise alternative explanation. The idea that the disciples stole the body. Why they stole the body and what they did with the body and how they then went out and preached on the strength of a stolen bloodied body is just really hard to imagine is hard to figure this amazing transformation in someone like Peter obviously others. It was in the disciples was clearly the Jews that stole the body of the Jews from stole the body. Why did they know it as soon as the message of the resurrection was being proclaimed the dinner just going for just a corpse. They couldn't, they can ask that we go through these, the Legion contemporary ideas that when the followers of Jesus went to the tomb. Their minds were so full of light and hope that in the end it didn't really matter whether there was a body there are no arts.
They were sold just while in prison for the faxes of the winch as they were hiding.
They were despondent. Everything was broken. They were done, but this is the nonsense that is proclaimed from pulpits all over the chagrin Valley. This is what many a man in my place, believes, and it allows them then still to use the phraseology of resurrection while not affirming the reality of the resurrection.
Why did Christianity America, writing take the shape it did because of the fact of the resurrection on that alternatives. Yes, there certainly are. Should we pay attention to them while it's good to know them.
Thirdly, if were going to engage our friends and neighbors in the in this matter. There are a number of thanks we need to keep in mind we've mentioned one or two let me just run through them for you. Fact number one the empty tomb.
Everyone is agreed that this tomb somehow or another was empty that the stone had been rolled away even with all of the angelic stuff on the women and so on.
Colombo has to go and be confronted by the empty tomb is in there with his raincoat and the lotion root and he just located in this area, but tomb is empty right. We need an explanation for the empty tomb here is presenting evidence. This is a fact. This is not a fiction. We are all agreed empty tomb. Secondly, fact the origin and existence of the church is simply to reiterate in brevity what we just pointed out.
Why was there a church why did these individuals who were sad, sorrowful, defeated refused that out. Why were the all of a sudden the products of joy and hope in power and animation.
Why did you begin to gather with one another and to sing songs of praise to this is Christ, why did they begin to tell others about this Jesus when he going to do with that fact. There is solid evidence about the reality of the resurrection.
Hearing it from Alastair big listening to Truth for Life weekend. We love sharing the gospel message here Truth for Life. That's our mission and you're invited to come alongside us in this endeavor by praying that God will use this program to help convert unbelievers bring believers into a closer relationship with Jesus and to build up local churches. While you're at it, take a minute this weekend and encourage your pastor as he teaches you from God's word, along with Alistair's messages we choose books to offer with great care and with our mission in mind the current book were recommending is titled read this first. A simple guide to getting the most from the Bible sometimes in life. It's best to take time to go back to the basics. The book, read this first can help you get back to the basics of studying the Bible.
The author is Pastor Gary Molnar.
He begins his book by reminding us that although the Bible was written thousands of years ago.
It was written to be understood by everyone that should be reassuring. We don't need some kind of special knowledge or an advanced education to understand what the Bible teaches. Instead, we simply need the desire to learn and the time to read the book read this verse gives us insight into how to do this in a way that will maximize your learning as you study the Bible. Find out more about the book, read this first when you visit our website at Truth for Life.I'm Bob Lapine. Thanks for listing are you living a resurrected life. Find out what that means is you join us next weekend for part two of today's message. The Bible teaching of Alastair big is furnished by Truth for Life Learning is for Living