Message for April 8, 2012

Mark 16:1-7 (NKJV)
                            He Is Risen
16 Now when the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices, that they might come and anoint Him. 2 Very early in the morning, on the first day of the week, they came to the tomb when the sun had risen. 3 And they said among themselves, “Who will roll away the stone from the door of the tomb for us?” 4 But when they looked up, they saw that the stone had been rolled away—for it was very large. 5 And entering the tomb, they saw a young man clothed in a long white robe sitting on the right side; and they were alarmed.6 But he said to them, “Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He is risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid Him. 7 But go, tell His disciples—and Peter—that He is going before you into Galilee; there you will see Him, as He said to you.”
    This is Easter and many people who show little interest most of the year are taking part in the “religion” activities of the day.  Programs, plays, sunrise services, and various other special activities are widely being presented today.  Is the activity in honor of the resurrection of Jesus or because of man’s natural desire to show himself “religious”?
    There is one thing more important than any other Easter activity.  It is pronounced by the Angel at the tomb that morning.  “He is risen!  He is not here.”  Nothing else in Christianity is as important as that statement.  As a matter of fact, nothing else in Christianity really matters if He is not risen.  None of the pomp and circumstance makes any difference if we miss the main point.  A well known German liberal Bible scholar once said,  “It doesn’t matter whether or not Jesus rose from the dead, as long as you believe He did.”  Does that really make sense?  Many leaders in Christianity today are doubting the cardinal beliefs of the Church including the resurrection.  This is a death sentence for the Church.  Paul put it like this.  “..if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty.” I Cor 15:14  “For if the dead do not rise, then Christ is not risen.  And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins!” I Cor 15:16-17
    Whatever is done or not done on Easter, the important thing is that Jesus rose from the dead and is ALIVE!  That is the real meaning of Easter.  That is what is to be remembered.  That is what is to be celebrated!

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