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The Resurrection of Jesus Christ, Part 2 A

Grace To You / John MacArthur
The Truth Network Radio
April 7, 2020 4:00 am

The Resurrection of Jesus Christ, Part 2 A

Grace To You / John MacArthur

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April 7, 2020 4:00 am

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It is his resurrection that guarantees ours is his resurrection, says Paul, that is the firstfruits of all events is the guarantor of popular in Christian circles, despite many contradictions to Scripture that are always found in them. It's fair to say the success of books like that points to a universal desire to know whether there is life beyond the grave and what it's like there is life after death but you want to know the truth about it and for that there is only one source word of God today on grace to you.

John MacArthur focuses your attention on the one who did achieve victory over death and made a way for you to do the same with the Easter celebration in view the title of John's current study, the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Here's the lesson let's open our Bibles to Matthew chapter 28. As we returned to Matthew's narrative on the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. The world is heard many important messages. The world has learned many great truths.

The world is experienced. Many dramatic and life-changing events but not anyone of them nor all of them combined can come close to the significance of the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Nothing in the history of the world.

In fact, not everything in the history of the world can match.

For significance the reality that Jesus was raised from the dead. In the resurrection of Jesus Christ is the heart of the Christian faith. Christianity is a belief is a series of troopers and doctrines and principles that rise and fall on the resurrection of Christ.

When Jesus rose from the dead. He proved himself to be exactly who he claimed to be when he rose from the dead by the power of the father. He was affirmed to have accomplished what he came to accomplish and in second Corinthians 414 it says that as God raised up Jesus from the dead soul also shall he raise us up.

Ours is a belief in resurrection life and that is built on the resurrection of Jesus Christ because he lives, we shall live also not the message of the Scripture has always been a message of resurrection hope that death is not the end. Death is not a cul-de-sac. It's not a dead-end street for the believer. It's a thoroughfare that enters into eternity. That's always been the belief of the people of God. In Psalm 4915. For example, the Scripture says God will ransom my soul from the power of the grave. In Psalm 73. In verse 24 we read afterward that is after this life, speaking to God, thou wilt receive me to glory. The prophet Hosea chapter 6 verse two confidently asserts that God will raise us up that we may live before him. Great prophet Isaiah chapter 26 in verse 19 says that I dead shall live their body shall rise old dwellers of the dust. Awake and sing for joy and in Daniel 12 verse two there is the great promise that those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake unto everlasting life. The 14th chapter of Job.

One of the oldest books in Scripture verse 14 says if a man die, shall he live again all the days of my appointed time will I wait says the answer till my change come in the 19th chapter of Job in verse 25 through 27 we read, for I know that my Redeemer lives, and that he shall stand at the latter day on the earth, and though after my skin worms destroy this body and in my flesh shall I see God, whom I shall see for myself and not another, though my heart be consumed within me. So the testimony of Job is that no matter what happens to his flesh someday in a new flesh, he will see God that has been the hope of God's people for all history. And it is predicated on the resurrection of Jesus Christ is his resurrection that guarantees ours is his resurrection, says Paul, that is the firstfruits of all that slipped. He is the guarantor of our resurrection. Is it any wonder then that the resurrection of Jesus Christ is mentioned at least 104 times in the New Testament resurrection may be denied. It may be despise. It may be mocked. Men may make an effort to explain it away to give some rational arguments to explain the phenomena, but frankly I think only a fool would want to explain away the resurrection of Christ because in so doing, he explains himself right into eternal doom for the only hope of life after death. The only hope of eternal salvation. The only hope of being with God and glory forever is the resurrection of Christ to explain that away is to damn all of the human race. Only a fool would do that was in the resurrection of Jesus Christ guarantees the resurrection of every saint, no matter what happens to the body that is the promise of Scripture and this then is unarguably the single greatest event in the history of the world. You cannot just slide the resurrection out of Christianity. Anybody who denies the literal bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ cannot be a Christian. He can only falsely claim the title because the resurrection is the heart of everything in the Christian faith look with me for a moment, to the 15th chapter of first Corinthians. Let me show you the centrality of the resurrection and the argument of the apostle Paul. If there is no resurrection, there is no Christian faith.

There is no hope.

There is no salvation.

There is no eternal life and he makes that argument very clear in first Corinthians 15 beginning in verse 13 he says if there is no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen so let's start with that assumption.

Christ is not risen.

Let's say that Christ did not rise.

Will try to explain the fact that his body wasn't there another way would try to explain the fact that the grave clothes were lying in perfect order. Another way will try another angle.

Maybe somebody took his body.

Maybe he never was dead and he just kind of book awakened in the coolness of the tomb and got up and walked out, but said he didn't rise then verse 14 says if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is useless because the gospel says men are sinners and sinners need a Savior and Christ is that Savior and Christ has paid the penalty for sin and conquer death if he didn't rise if he did not realize that he is as dead as everybody else's and he didn't do a thing for us is payment was not accepted. He was not powerful enough. So, if Christ is not risen, then gospel preaching is useless.

There is no good news. The news is all bad. The next statement in his argument comes in the same verse, verse 14, and your faith is also useless and he repeats that in verse 17 of Christ is not raised, your faith is useless if Christ is not risen, then all gospel preaching is useless and anyone who believes it is exercising an absolutely useless faith because a dead Christ is not good news and believing in a dead Christ is pointless. Furthermore, verse 15, Paul says yea and we are found false witnesses of God because we have testified of Christ that he raised up Christ to me raise not up if so be that the dead rise not, in other words, he says all the apostles are liars. If Christ is not risen gospel preaching is useless faith in it is useless and the apostles are liars who repeatedly preach that Christ did rise. Furthermore, verse 17 says if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain or useless and you are yet in your sins and the next morning's argument is that the power of sin is unbroken, and every man therefore is under the total domination of sin to be doomed and damned forever by the resurrection of Jesus Christ is not just some negotiable reality is the very cornerstone of the Christian faith. And if you remove it. The whole thing comes down. Furthermore, verse 18 says then they also who are fallen asleep or have already died in Christ are damn. If Christ is not risen gospel preaching is useless faith in it is useless. The apostles are liars. Since power is unbroken and everybody who died, hoping in Christ is damn. Therefore, he says in verse 19. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.

If Christ didn't rise from the dead than Christians are putting their hope in a dead Christ and they are the most pitiful people in the world, but bless God he did rise let's go back to Matthew 28 and see his resurrection. This is the theme of Matthew/chapter this is the climax of 28 chapters of the life of Christ is the monumental event of history, the simplicity with which he presents. It is thrilling. The lack of effort to try to prove it, but to just let it speak for itself, is convincing that we set the time verse one and the end of the Sabbath or literally, long after the Sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week Sunday morning at dawn John says when all of it began to happen. It was still dark by the time the ladies arrived at the tomb the streaks of sunlight coming from the East had begun to come across the top of the Mount of olives and it was beginning to be light is then the third day it is Sunday the third day since Jesus was put in the grave on Friday. This then is the promised day of resurrection for at least five times already in Matthew's gospel. The fact that Jesus would be in the grave has been stated and that he would be there three days, five times, it is already sad or been noted by some that Christ said he would be in the grave three days and now is that third day, resurrection day. Matthew approaches the resurrection seen differently than Mark and Luke and John.

They almost see the same scene they all deal with the similar phenomenon. Yet their perspectives are unique to each writer Matthew approaches it from the feelings and attitudes and emotions of the women who were there and thus it has a very human quality, though it is a supernatural event to exceed all events, it still has a very natural a very human, a very real sense, as we come to it through the emotions of these women who loved Christ not remember the first attitude we saw was the attitude of sympathy early in the morning, while it is still dark. John says the women begin to move toward the two. The night before. After the sun had gone down. That is, the Sabbath was ended.

They had purchased some spices and they were coming for a final anointing of the corpse. They didn't believe in a resurrection they were anticipating the resurrection they were coming out of devoted love and sympathy to Christ to anoint his body one more time before decay.

Finally totally took over in Mark 16 it says as they approached the grave. They were concerned about who might roll the stone away because it was so large and they were weak and they would need some men to do that. That tells me that they weren't all expecting a resurrection. They didn't even realize there would be a Roman guard there to keep them from doing what they intended to do so they came not aware of a resurrection not aware of the guard at the grave only aware of their own sympathy for the Savior for the teacher that they had followed so long and they were now sad because he was dead, and frankly, they had little if any hope in their hearts for a resurrection.

They never seem to even expected the women appear at the end of verse one Mary Magdalena and the other Mary, Mary the wife of Clovis or Alpheus the mother of James, a little, and Joseph's and Mark says. Also, Salome was there. Salome was the wife of Zebedee and the mother of James and John and Luke says that Joanna was there. The wife of Koos who was one of the stewards of Herod's always a little group of women who came as they came that ground must've rumbled with the tremors because there was an earthquake is verse two indicates but their purpose in coming was to see the tomb.

It says at the end of verse one. They wanted to see and then the going anoint the body of the Lord. When they arrived or even as they began to approach, feeling the waves of the earthquake. There are sympathy was turned to another emotion that was the emotion of terror in verse two tells us there was a great earthquake and the earthquake was not caused by the resurrection. Remember what I told you Christ had already gone out of the grave. The angel came and he caused it says there was a great earthquake because an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone from the door and sat on it. That's what created the earthquake and remember what I told you the angel did not open the grave to let Christ out the angel open the grave to let people in Christ. It already left. I said last time also that as the women approach they could see the tomb was opened. The stone was laying flat. An agent was sitting on now apparently one of those women, Mary Magdalene, who was very devoted and very impetuous and very impulsive. She was sort of the counterpart of Peter among the women, apparently as she saw the open tomb didn't really take stock of the angel and wait to see what was going to happen, but John chapter 20 records that Mary Magdalena having arrived and seeing the tomb open, turned immediately and ran and if you read the 20th chapter of John I four verses you will see that she ran back into the city to find Peter and John to tell them that something terrible would happen.

And someone had taken the Lord. She didn't wait around to talk to the angel, perhaps an even see the angel effect. I'm almost sure she didn't or she would've been anxious to stay and find out from the angel what had happened and so she goes to Peter and John so as the description of the angel comes in verse three.

By this time Mary Magdalena's gone. She's running back into the city to find Peter and to find your meanwhile the rest of the women remain in they face an angel whose face or countenance is like lightning. This then is a messenger from holy God. Further, that is confirmed because his garment is as white as snow.

Speaking of holiness and purity and sinlessness.

This is a holy angel sent from the face of God, the angels do always behold the face of the father and the glory of the father says in Matthew 18. They behold his face.

The glory of the father transmitted to them born by them in this occasion to those women demonstrates that this is a messenger from God and his white garment that he is a holy angel, so fearful was he. Verse four says that the soldiers were knocked unconscious and there in a state of coma. At this point lying on the ground. The women are ensure terror in verse five the angel answered and said to them, stop being terrorized, stop being afraid there's no need for this for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified.

I know why you're here. Must've been a comforting word for them and then in verse six he says he's not here. He was raised as he said, and the emphasis is on as he said this is what he predicted this was the prophecy come see the place where he lay, and then in verse seven.

You'll remember, the angel said go quickly.

All of this is taking place in a very brief time. Go quickly and tell his disciples that he is risen literally that he was raised by the power of the father implied from the dead. Fascination has to give way to proclamation.

You can't just hang around the tomb.

You gotta get out with the message go to the apostles immediately and tell them he is alive of the evidence was all there.

If they were taking note of it. The evidence was all there. The empty tomb that only the empty tomb with the unconscious guard something so powerful that it over powered the Roman soldiers and then there was the angelic testimony from a holy angel out of the presence of God. And then there was the orderly grave close the other gospel writers point out how that if Jesus had been stolen by someone they would've written those things off them and they would have been scattered all over the inside of that tomb or the outside but they were lying perfectly as they had been lying when he was in them further testimony was these women knew the disciples didn't believe in any resurrection. They hadn't really come to grips with the resurrection so they wouldn't have stolen the body to falsify a resurrection. They didn't even believe was going to happen. Furthermore, that was the explicit statement of Jesus fulfilled in this or there was plenty of evidence that it really was a resurrection, but the angel goes even further.

Look at verse seven. You're not going to have to take my word for it. He says, in effect, behold, he goes before you into Galilee, there shall you see him low.

I have told you I've given my message.

I've done my duty, you're going to become eye witness says when you see him in Galilee. This of course would be the climax of Matthew's gospel. The promise of the resurrection would be fulfilled in Jesus said it in chapter 26 verse 32.

After I am raised up again.

I will go before you into Galilee. I'll meet you all in Galilee, Galilee of the Gentiles, Galilee of the nations where the Lord first ministered in first. It is miracles and first redeem souls and was first hated and rejected Galilee a microcosm of the world. The fact that he would meet them and commissioned them to preach the gospel in Galilee was in a sense to say I want this to be a representation that you must go to the whole world. It was a positive statement, even as when Jesus came. In Matthew 415 it says he came to Galilee as a light to the darkness as light to the shadow of death. Galilee represented the world and the message of resurrection was to go to the world so the commissioning was to be in Galilee, and indeed it was, as Matthew points out in verses 16 to 20 that great statement, go ye and make disciples, baptizing us over the someone that was said to them. Verse 16 says in a mountain in Galilee. Matthew's gospel ends with that great commission.

All those people gathered in Galilee and sent out with the message of the risen Christ. Now that doesn't mean that he didn't appear to anybody in Jerusalem. First, because he did it simply means that the Great Commissioning Would Take Pl. in Galilee Lord will lead you there and he will meet you there and there you will be sent to the world with the message. There were some appearances of Christ in Jerusalem before the meeting in Galilee. There's no question about that. In fact, I can give it to you very briefly this is Sunday morning in just a matter of moments. He will appear to Mary Magdalena who will arrive at the grave.

The women who have been there since she left are now on their way to the disciples there going to be leaving. And as they're leaving Mary Magdalena and Peter and John are coming and he'll appear to Mary and later on he will appear personally to Simon Peter as Luke 24 tells us in first grade. He is 15 five also tells us he appeared first Peter so there will be a personal appearance to Mary because of her deep devotion and because she stayed by the grave a personal appearance to Peter because he, of all the disciples had seemingly defected the farthest and needed grace for restoration, and after that there would be an appearance to two disciples two disciples are on their way to Emmaus and as they walk on the road to Emmaus. The Lord joins that walks along with them opens the Scripture teaches them about himself and reveals himself to them in the breaking of bread so he appears to Mary in the area of Jerusalem. He appears to Peter and the are Jerusalem repairs to the two on the road to Emmaus, outside Jerusalem and then on this very Sunday night. All the disciples were gathered in the upper room in the Lord appeared to them. It says in Luke 24, 36 and as they spoke. Jesus himself stood in the midst of them and send them peace be unto you, and they were terrified and frightened and thought they'd seen the spirit so he appeared to Mary. He appeared to Peter. He appeared to unnamed disciples on the road to Emmaus in the afternoon by evening. He appears to the 11 disciples gathered together, in fact, there were only 10. At that time who was missing Thomas and eight days later. The Scriptures tell us John chapter 20 versus 26 to 29. He appeared again in the upper room.

This time Thomas was there and Thomas 20 Psalm said, my Lord and my God this is grace to you with John MacArthur thanks for tuning in today. John is Chancellor of the Masters University in seminary and his current study is an in-depth look at the resurrection of Jesus Christ, John, whether were talking about the resurrection creation and the fall of man Christ to return or some other doctrine question that always comes up is this is it ever necessary to look beyond Scripture for the truth about spiritual things, or is Scripture truly sufficient. The Scriptures truly sufficient, but only when it's understood and the there are two approaches essentially to Scripture. One is the approach of going through a passage and that's the foundation of all understanding. The other is the approach of looking at the themes of Scripture and pulling them together we say then that there is the expositional approach to understanding the Scripture and there is the theological approach where you collect all the data about a certain theme and use some up all the Scripture says about that for example all that it says about the nature of God or the Holy Spirit. All that it says about itself. All the Bible claims for itself. This is called theology, and when you've done biblical theology and biblical exposition. You have all this data you sum it up tie it together in what is called systematic theology, and they're basically 10 categories of systematic theology into which all biblical truth fits that some people take this idea of the sufficiency of Scripture and misapply it and would say you all you can use in your study, then, is Scripture, and they would rule out commentaries or books. We don't hold to that view. Right. Well of course not.

There have been clear instructions in the Bible to study to show yourself approved in the gutter work when needing not to be ashamed to draw from the elimination that the spirit of God has given others know that that that is a kind of pious ignorance to say all I just use the Bible.

I don't use anything but the Bible in order to even understand the Bible, you have to know something about language something about history.

Something about no mention events, summing it up in systematic theology is the end product of all of that used all the resources to re-create the context you've interpreted the text you got all correct. You got all this interpretation. Now you pull it all together into categories and that's what a systematic theology as we have one. I am thrilled to be able to say that we have a book called biblical doctrine. My dear friend Dick Mayhew was my partner in producing this along with professors at the Masters seminary systematic theology themes like the work of Christ, the Holy Spirit, the fall of man, the sufficiency of Scripture the cross, salvation, eschatology, end times the end of the world. The doctrine of the church so many this is the sum of everything the Bible teaches a systematic summary of Bible doctrine. You can get your copy today from Grace to you. Yes, get this book and make sure you know the key doctrines in the Bible. It's vital to understand these truths.

Whether you're a pastor or Sunday school teacher or simply someone wants to know God's word to order the book titled biblical doctrine. Contact us today to purchase biblical doctrine. Call toll-free 855 grace or you can place your order at TTY.or, again, doctrine is not just for theologians and pastors. It's for anyone who loves God and his word again to purchase this systematic theology book called simply biblical doctrine, call us at 855 grace will go to our website and as resurrection Sunday approaches. Let me recommend this special audio program called one perfect life in it MacArthur takes a dramatic look at the events surrounding Jesus death burial and resurrection giving you a unique perspective on everything Christ endured and accomplished for sinners 2000 years ago, is an ideal program to listen to with your family as you prepare to celebrate Easter Sunday, and in light of the current health crisis.

You may be celebrating with your family have a great Easter. The one perfect life program is available at TTY.that's our website now for John MacArthur and the staff. I'm Phil Johnson. Thanks for making grace to you part of your day and make sure you're here tomorrow when John continues his look at the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

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