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Our Resurrection - Part 1

Fellowship in the Word / Bil Gebhardt
The Truth Network Radio
February 18, 2022 7:00 am

Our Resurrection - Part 1

Fellowship in the Word / Bil Gebhardt

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February 18, 2022 7:00 am

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Today on Fellowship in the Word, Pastor Bill Gebhardt challenges you to become a fully functioning follower of Jesus Christ. In verse 14 and verse 19, Jesus said this, Because I live, you shall live also. Because I live, you shall live also. That may be one of the most hopeful statements ever made.

That may be one of the greatest thoughts you could ever think. Thank you for joining us today on this edition of Fellowship in the Word with Pastor Bill Gebhardt. Fellowship in the Word is the radio ministry of Fellowship Bible Church located in Metairie, Louisiana. Let's join Pastor Bill Gebhardt now as once again he shows us how God's Word meets our world. There is a preacher of the old school, but he speaks as boldly as ever today.

He's not very popular. And even though the whole world is his parish and he travels to every part of the globe and he speaks in every language. He visits the poor.

He visits the rich. He preaches to people of every religion and he preaches to many of no religion. And the subject of his sermon is always the same.

It never changes. He's an eloquent preacher and he is able to stir emotions in the hearts of people who are not emotional. He is able to bring tears to people who seldom if ever weep.

His arguments are beyond refutation. There is no heart that remains untouched and unmoved by the force of his appeals. This preacher shatters life. This preacher disturbs the status quo.

Almost everybody hates him, but everybody listens to him. His name is death. Every tombstone is his pulpit.

Every newspaper print is text. And one day you will be the subject of his sermon. And he will stand at your graveside and he will preach to others.

With that kind of thought in mind. Thomas Gray, the great 18th century poet and scholar from Cambridge. Wrote these words.

He said, the boast of heraldry, the pomp of power and all that is beautiful and all that is wealth. Await alike the inevitable hour, the paths of all glory lead but to the grave. Every single one of us, every one of us are born into this world with a fuse. And the day we are born the fuse is lit and it burns. For some the fuse burns slow.

But for others it burns much too fast. For some of us find that life seems like a long time. Yet for others it seems like it's over before it even starts. When you were born a countdown began. And for each and every one of us it's going to end with all zeros. Because we will be visited by death. You see in one way I guess you could describe life as the process of dying.

Because you begin to die from the moment that you were born. You can try to ignore it. You could shrug it off with indifference.

You could yawn in its face. But your wick is burning. Your countdown is moving. Inevitably your wick will burn out.

And your countdown will be all zeros. And then what? You see and then what? Is there an escape?

Is there hope? You bet. Open your Bibles to the book of Revelation chapter 1. The book of Revelation chapter 1.

And I'm just using this as a launching pad. You know the book, the great book of the apocalypse. The great prophetic visions that is given to John. But I want to look right in the beginning of chapter 1 beginning in verse 12. And I want you to see something. Something we may not think about when we think of the book of Revelation.

But we should. In verse 12, John says, then I turned to see. I wanted to see the voice that was speaking with me. And having turned, he said, I saw seven golden lampstands. And in the middle of the lampstands I saw one like the son of man.

Clothed in a robe, reaching to the feet. And girded across his chest with a golden sash. And his head and his hair were white like white wool.

Like snow. And his eyes were like the flame of fire. And his feet were like burnished bronze.

When it had been made to glow in a furnace. And his voice was like the sound of many waters. And in his right hand he held seven stars. And out of his mouth came a sharp two-edged sword. And his face was like the sun shining at full strength. What an image. John says, when I saw him I fell at his feet like a dead man.

Could you imagine seeing that? We know that he has seen the ascended and glorified Christ. And he's overwhelmed by that. But listen to what happens next. And he placed his right hand on me. And he said, do not be afraid.

I am the first and the last. And the living one. Now here's the part that I want you to pay particular attention to. And I was dead. Behold. I am alive forevermore.

I have the keys of death in Hades. I was dead. Behold. I am alive forevermore.

Somebody has gone to the grave and come out the other side. Somebody has done this. That's great news. I mean, that's an amazing thing. Now you could say, yeah, but I mean, that was the Son of God that did that. I mean, that's God in the flesh. That's Jesus Christ, the Lord.

It is. But in John 14 and verse 19, Jesus said this, because I live, you shall live also. Because I live, you shall live also. That may be one of the most hopeful statements ever made. That may be one of the greatest thoughts you could ever think. Because I live, you shall live also.

How do you respond to that? You see, I think that as people so often, we are so mesmerized by the great preacher death. We don't talk about him much. We know he's there. We like him sequestered.

We like people where he preaches just a little out of the way places so we can speed by in our cars and not have to even look or be involved unless it's a relative or a friend and then we have to stop by. You see, from our point of view, we would risk rather not deal with it. But it's a reality. For each and every one of us, it's a reality. And it's a reality we all know is coming. We know it's there.

We'd just rather not talk about it. Jesus Christ says, because I live, you shall live also. If you stop and think about that, that if you are a believer in Jesus Christ, you live beyond the grave, beyond it. You live beyond the grave forever. Jesus said, I am alive forevermore. You should be overwhelmed by that thought. I know this, the apostle Paul was.

He was completely overwhelmed by that thought. Turn with me now to 1 Corinthians, chapter 15. 1 Corinthians, chapter 15. And we're going to start, or the spot that I'd like to speak particularly on is beginning in verse 54, although we'll look at parts of the whole chapter. 1 Corinthians 15, verse 54. When you study this chapter and you get to these verses, they seem odd.

And they seem odd because of the context. It seems odd because it's the apostle Paul. If you spent your life as I have studying him, you come away with certain conclusions about him. I mean, one thing you know for sure, he is logical.

Paul was the epitome of logic. That's what he's like. He's analytical. He thinks things through.

He's prosaic. He's very defined in his thinking. Maybe that's what I love so much about him. But in verse 54, he changes. And all of a sudden, he stops the logic. It's as though his soul kind of explodes on the pages. The prose that he always writes is kind of turned into poetry.

His cool calculation becomes raw emotion. Now, you can see because you're in verse 54 and you can all count. You know this is a long chapter. If you know Paul, this is a really long chapter.

For Luke, not so much. But for Paul, this is a really long chapter. And the whole chapter is only about one thing, resurrection.

It's about nothing else. First, the resurrection of Christ and then our resurrection. Look back to verse 3 with the resurrection of Christ. When Paul begins the chapter, he said, For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried and that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas into the Twelve. Christ historically raised from the dead. Paul says that's of first importance.

That's very important that you understand that. Look then down to verse 20. He says, But now Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who are asleep.

The Bible always describes the death of a believer asleep. And he says, Christ is raised from the dead. It's just like what Jesus said in John 14.

And because of that, he's just the firstfruits. And those believers who die will follow him. And so he now introduces the idea of our resurrection.

Notice verse 23, But each one in his own order, Christ the firstfruits, after that, those who are Christ that is coming. Then down to verse 42, So also is the resurrection of the dead. He said, It is sown a perishable body. It is raised an imperishable body.

He's talking about us being raised. The trouble is kind of in the words. The numerical standard uses the word perishable. Now when you think perishable, you think of something of questioning your refrigerator, don't you?

You sort of smell it. Maybe this is perishable. It's not a great word.

King James uses corruption. And the Greek word there perishable is the word thora. It comes from another Greek word, which is thyro.

And thyro is an interesting word. It means spoiled. It means decaying. It means rotting. That's a description of us, by the way.

That's what he is saying. He said, Our body is sown a perishable body. You were born to die.

The fuse is lit. The countdown begins. He said, But you are raised imperishable.

Then he goes on. He says, It is sown in dishonor. But it's raised in glory. It is sown in weakness, but it's raised in power. It's sown a natural body. It is raised a spiritual body. He said, If there is a natural body and there is, he said, Then there is a spiritual body as well. That's what Paul says.

When Paul was writing this, he's beginning to become overwhelmed because he's thinking of how profound it is. You see, the question for all of us, it's always that question we never talk about. The whole question, it's always in the back of our mind. There's going to be a time when you're not here anymore. It's just the reality of life.

It's just the way it works. And we love it when it's out there. And by the way, for you young people that are here, you're like, What's he even talking about?

It's so far out there. But two things to keep in mind. One is you won't believe the speed of the aging process.

In the front end, it just seems like you're barely moving. I mean, ninth grade to 12th grade to me seemed like a century. But it changes. But the other thing is a lot of wicks go out young. It happens all the time.

People die that way as well. None of us are guaranteed tomorrow, young or old. And so it's always out there. Paul was thinking about this and urging us to think about it. Think about this, how important this is.

He said it's of first importance. It's the distinguished, complete distinguished aspect of Christianity. Jesus Christ raised from the dead. Jesus Christ raised from the dead. You'll never hear that about Muhammad. You'll not hear that about Confucius. You'll not hear that about any religion in the world.

Raised from the dead. That's why it's the most important part. And it should create in us a sense of wonder, not a sense of trepidation. So when Paul looks at this, comes to his conclusion, he gets down to verse 54. He's so overwhelmed that he just starts praising. And there are four different ways in which he praises.

He's so overwhelmed. He says there's a praise of... I want to praise this great transformation. I want to praise this great triumph.

I want to have great thanksgiving toward God. And then he concludes there's going to be a great, therefore, conclusion that he has. And the first one is the great transformation in verse 54. He says, but when this perishable will have put on the imperishable, and this mortal will have put on immortality, then, he says, will come about the saying that is written, death is swallowed up in victory.

What does verse 54 tell me? Something's coming. Something is coming. When this perishable... We are going to radically change. You are going to go from perishable to imperishable, from mortal to immortal. He said it's going to be amazing. In fact, he says you're going to go from weakness to power. You're going to go from dishonor, he says, to glory. You're going to go from this natural body to your spiritual body. That's what he is saying. And he's overwhelmed by that.

And it's an amazing thing. Death is swallowed up. We never think of death that way. We think of death as just the inevitable thing. He said, no, death is swallowed up in victory.

Imperishable, immortal. You see, we don't think about that enough, but we think of everything else. We are victims of deterioration. If you stood where I am standing, you'd know it.

In fact, I guess looking at me, you've got a pretty good idea. We are victims of deterioration. I mean, as we grow older, our hair falls out.

It's gone. We lose its pigment, and then it turns gray. Because that happens. Our skin loses its elasticity. And at first, you just think little lines. Then you start thinking smiley lines. And then you start thinking, oh, my goodness, these are like crevices that my grandmother had. Our skin wrinkles.

You see, it just happens. We are part of that. And what do we do instead of thinking profound thoughts as Christians? We try to camouflage it.

We think that'll work. I've said this before, but the only person you have to fool if that's your route is you. You really aren't fooling anyone else. Not at all.

And then we make up statements that are complete lies. Life begins at 40. It doesn't. If you're 40 or just turned 40, you are closer to dying than ever before. Than ever in your life. 60 is the new 40. Really?

No, 60 is 60. And that's a big number. See, that's the reality. But we try to camouflage it. Paul says we can't.

We can't. We're perishable. You see, we're terminal. We're deteriorating. We're gonna die.

That's the reality. But notice, he says death is swallowed up in victory. Something is coming. Something is coming.

If you read the end of the book, Revelation 21, you start hearing some things there as you read them down and you think of the profoundness. Says things there like, no more sorrow. No more tears. No more suffering. No more pain. No more death. See, something is coming. See, there are two great words in that verse to me. Two just great words. When and then.

You see, when this perishable will put on the imperishable and this mortal will put on immortality, then. Then. You see, it's not happening in my life now. But it's going to. You see, it's going to. Then it's gonna change.

That's the distinguishing aspect of our whole faith. When tells me it's not yet. Then tells me it's surely coming. You see, that's what happens. My resurrection is a future event.

What's it going to be like? I'm not sure exactly, but I think I have a pretty good idea. I know Jesus Christ was raised from the dead about 2,000 years ago. And I know even before he ascended, his resurrected body was different.

I know that. I know that it bore the scars of the crucifixion. So it was right there in a resurrected body. I know that he ate with the disciples. Just like they ate, he ate. But I also know he walked right through walls.

That he was not limited by the dimensions of our space. It says he just appeared in their midst. I also know that in the book of Acts, that body just ascended and went to the heaven.

I don't know about you, but I think that's pretty cool. You see, I think that's a resurrected body. You see, what's my body going to be like?

What's it going to be like? Well, hold your place here because we're coming back. But go with me to 1 John chapter 3. 1 John, right near the end of the Bible, chapter 3. And here the apostle John starts the chapter out by saying, see how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called the children of God and such we are.

That and enough would get you all excited. John says, we are called the children of God. That's an amazing statement. But he says, for this reason the world does not know us because it did not know him. And then he says this, beloved, now we are the children of God.

But let's talk about then. He says, and it has not appeared as yet what we will be. We know that when he appears, here it is, we will be like him because we will see him just as he sees us. You've been listening to Pastor Bill Gebhardt on the Radio Ministry of Fellowship in the Word. If you ever miss one of our broadcasts or maybe you would just like to listen to the message one more time, remember that you can go to a great website called That's and you can listen to Fellowship in the Word online.

At that website you will find not only today's broadcast but also many of our previous audio programs as well. At Fellowship in the Word we are thankful for those who financially support our ministry and make this broadcast possible. We ask all of our listeners to prayerfully consider how you might help this radio ministry continue its broadcast on this radio station by supporting us monthly or with just a one-time gift. Support for our ministry can be sent to Fellowship in the Word 4600 Clearview Parkway, Metairie, Louisiana 7006. If you would be interested in hearing today's message in its original format, that is as a sermon that Pastor Bill delivered during a Sunday morning service at Fellowship Bible Church, then you should visit our website,

That's At our website you will find hundreds of Pastor Bill's sermons. You can browse through our sermon archives to find the sermon series you are looking for or you can search by title. Once you find the message you are looking for, you can listen online or if you prefer, you can download the sermon and listen at your own convenience. And remember, you can do all of this absolutely free of charge. Once again, our website is For Pastor Bill Gebhardt, I'm Jason Gebhardt, thanking you for listening to Fellowship in the Word. We'll see you next time.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-06-03 16:49:08 / 2023-06-03 16:58:14 / 9

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