The Mystery of the Resurrection

Here is a wonderful sermon series I found on the Grace to You website with John MacArthur at his best as always.

With Easter in mind it is my prayer that you the reader/listener may enjoy to learn from the Word of God in this wonderful expository as only John MacArthur can !! 

Here is a short writing by  A W TozerEaster Meditation

THERE IS AN EXQUISITE APPROPRIATENESS in our celebrating the resurrection of Christ in the spring. When nature is waking to life again after her long winter of sleep, it is then that the thoughts of Christians everywhere are turned to the wonder of the Savior’s coming out of the tomb after His ordeal with sin and death. Christ’s resurrection was an act once accomplished at a given moment in history. It does not in any sense depend upon seasons or celebrations, nor does the miracle of the springtime add anything to the glory of the once-done deed. The workings of God in nature do, however, cast a warm light upon His workings in redemption and the springtime of life in the earth illustrates the miracle of life in the new creation.

Nicolas Herman, at eighteen years of age, was brought to Christ by seeing in midwinter a dry and leafless tree and thinking what a change the spring would make in its condition. He reasoned that if God could make such a difference in a tree, He could change the heart of a sinner, too, and God did not fail him. His heart was changed, and from that day his life was devoted to the service of Christ. Uncounted thousands of Christians over the last 300 years have thanked God that young Nicolas saw that leafless tree.

It takes some faith to stand in a winter landscape surrounded by the chill silence of snow and ice and believe that in a few short weeks every trace of frost will be gone, that the snow-covered hills will be dressed in green and the ice–locked streams will be running swift and free again in the summer sun. Yet our confidence is never disappointed. “The earth is the Lord’s” and He will always “renew the face of the earth.”

It is hard to imagine anything less hopeful than the sight of a burial. When the body of Christ was taken down from the cross, wrapped in a clean linen cloth and laid in a new tomb hewn out of the rock, how many who looked on had the faith to hope that inside three days this dead Man would be walking again among men and women, alive forevermore? But so it came to pass. Aaron’s rod budded. The leafless tree on which the Savior died sprang into bloom. What had been stark death before became life at the touch of God, and the gallows became the gate to everlasting life.

The resurrection of Christ, we repeat, is a once-done act. “For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him.” But Christians die. Every day the bodies of believing men and women are taken out to the cemetery and laid to rest with quiet songs and soft repetitions of Scripture. No matter how we may try to avoid the facts, Christians die as their Lord died before them. Their cold helplessness, their sudden strange silence, which no pleadings of anguished love can break, their apparent defeat by the relentless forces of nature–all this stuns the heart and (if the truth were told) arouses uncomfortable fears that this is all, that we have seen our friends for the last time. It is winter when we lay our loved ones down. So it seems to the natural heart. So it must have appeared to some of the Thessalonian Christians. Why otherwise would if have been necessary for Paul to write and exhort them not to sorrow as others who had no hope?

One thing the resurrection teaches us is that we must not trust appearances. The leafless tree says by its appearance that there will be no second spring. The body in Joseph’s new tomb appears to signify the end of everything for Christ and His disciples. The limp form of a newly-dead believer suggests everlasting defeat. Yet how wrong are all these appearances. The tree will bloom again. Christ arose the third day according to the Scriptures, and the Christian will rise at the shout of the Lord and the voice of the archangel.

Faith can afford to accept the appearance of defeat, knowing the true believer cannot be defeated finally. “Because I live, you also will live.” That is the message of Easter. What a blessed message for the whole world if men would only believe it.

( Article taken from This World: Playground or Battleground?, Chapter 20 )

How can you be sure Jesus really came out of the grave two thousand years ago? Hear compelling evidence and sharpen your understanding of Christ’s life-changing triumph over death in John MacArthur’s Easter study, The Mystery of the Resurrection.

The Mystery of the Resurrection

The shock waves created by the discovery of an empty tomb two thousand years ago continue to perplex even the harshest skeptic. Where did the body go? What about the eyewitnesses, the hundreds who saw the risen Christ? What transformed cowardly disciples into courageous martyrs?And consider this question–really, the question if you believe Christ arose: What does the resurrection mean for me?In The Mystery of the Resurrection, John MacArthur brings you face to face with the glorious, profound truths of Jesus’ resurrection–the turning point of human history and cornerstone of the Christian life. This study from 1 Corinthians 15 will sharpen your understanding of Christ’s triumph over death and help you encourage unbelievers to embrace the risen Lord and Savior.Key Related Resource(s)

An Overview of Resurrection Truth  1 Corinthians 15:1-58

The Evidence for Resurrection, Part 1  1 Corinthians 15:1-4

The Evidence for Resurrection, Part 2  1 Corinthians 15:5-11

The Results of Denying Bodily Resurrection  1 Corinthians 15:12-19

The Resurrection Plan 1 Corinthians 15:20-28

Resurrection Incentives 1 Corinthians 15:29-34

Our Resurrection Bodies 1 Corinthians 15:35-49

Victory over Death 1 Corinthians 15:50-58

Copyright 1977, Grace to You. All rights reserved.  Used by permission

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