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Because the Tomb is Empty - Easter

So What? / Lon Solomon
The Truth Network Radio
April 4, 2021 6:00 am

Because the Tomb is Empty - Easter

So What? / Lon Solomon

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Also like to welcome you to our program, you know, from members on her daughters to be on stations all around the nation bringing the truths of God's word as it is uncompromising and straightforward and I'm so glad you tuned in to listen and be part of that.

Thanks again for your support and your generosity that keeps us on the radio and now let's get to the word of God, almost 2000 years ago. The very first ether began within a old saying these words. Matthew 28 verse five he said fear not for I know that you are looking for Jesus was crucified.

He is not here he is risen.

Just as he said he would. There was an interesting article in Newsweek magazine entitled rethinking the resurrection, and here's what Newsweek had to say about and I quote Newsweek said by any measure of the resurrection of Jesus is the most radical of Christian doctrines. Jesus is teaching his compassion for others.

Even his martyrs death all find parallels in other religious tradition but of no other historical figure has the claim been persistently made that God raised him from the dead." Well, Newsweek is absolutely right.

The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the most radical doctrine in all of Christianity.

And yet it forms the absolute bedrock of biblical Christianity. So the question we want to talk about this Easter morning is did the resurrection of Jesus really happened. Did Jesus really rise from the dead, the way he said he would and if so, well, what difference does that make to your life in my life today so that's our plan. Let's get going. Did the resurrection of Jesus really happened will remember what the angel said the angel said that Jesus is risen, just as he said he would do.

The point I want you to see is that while Jesus was here on earth. He was constantly telling people that he was going to rise from the dead. Jesus told this. For example, to his enemies in Matthew chapter 12 then Jesus said to the rabbis for as Jonah was in the belly of the fish for three days and nights, so I will be in the heart of the earth for three days and three nights.

Jesus also told this to his disciples and his friends. Matthew chapter 16. The Bible says. From that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem that he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life again after he died on the cross, the Jewish leaders went to Pontius Pilate.

Matthew chapter 27 and they said we remember that while he was alive. This deceiver said after three days I will rise again.

I mean friends to live in Israel 2000 years ago and say what resurrection of Jesus would be like having lived in the 60s and and saying what Vietnam War or living in the 70s and saying what Watergate break-in or living today and saying Osama bin Laden will every body in Jerusalem knew about Jesus's claim that he was coming back from the dead three days after he was put in the grave.

The question is did he do it. Question is, did it really happen well in that regard. I have four pieces of compelling evidence that I would like to present to you this Easter Sunday that corroborate the fact that the Lord Jesus really did rise from the dead, the way he said evidence number one is the evidence of the Roman soldiers Matthew chapter 27 the Jewish leader said the Pontius Pilate server.

We remember that while he was still alive that deceiver said after three days I will rise again so please give the order for his tomb to be made secure until the third day. Otherwise, his disciples may come and steal his body and tell people that he's been raised from the dead and then this last deception will be worse than the first. So Pilate said to them, take a squad of Roman soldiers and make the tomb as secure as you know how so the Jewish leaders posted discard at Jesus is to now we know that a Roman security team like this. Guarding a prisoner would usually consist of 15 enlisted men and one officer and these soldiers had a deeply vested interest in making sure that no one tampered with the body of Jesus Christ. Because if a Roman soldier lost his prisoner. Even his dead prisoner that Roman soldier lost his life. Many of you will remember in acts chapter 16 the story of the apostle Paul being in jail in Philippi, a city in northern Greece on his second missionary journey.

If you don't let me just tell you that Paul was thrown in jail and then in the middle of the night and angel came and blew the doors off all the cells in this prison, I want you to see what happened next. Acts chapter 16 verse 27, then it says the jailer who by the way, was a Roman soldier woke up and when he saw the prison doors open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself because he thought the prisoners had escaped the why was this Roman soldier going to commit suicide well because he knew that if he lost his prisoners.

His superiors were going to kill them anyway so he figured he save them the trouble and just do it to himself that friends in light of this, do you really think that a bunch of unarmed women and fishermen could've gotten past these battle hardened Roman soldiers and actually stolen the body of Jesus when these soldiers knew their very life depended on that not happening.

Preposterous, impossible and then second of all when it comes to evidence for the resurrection.

We have the evidence of Jesus's enemies. You see, as soon as the news began to spread through Jerusalem that though there is been a resurrection that the Lord Jesus had risen the Jewish leaders. The Bible tells us became determined that they were going to quash that rumor that they were going to discredit that news at all costs. And so the Bible says Matthew 28 that the Jewish leaders gave the soldiers a great sum of money and said we want you to say that Jesus's disciples came and stole his body away while you were sleeping.

And with this news gets back to Pilate. We will keep you out of trouble. Now here's the question folks in order to discredit the resurrection of Jesus. Why did these Jewish leaders have to spend all this money and why did they have to be willing to go to all this political trouble. I mean all they really had to do was roll the stone away pull the dead body of Jesus out of the grave put it on public display somewhere in Jerusalem and invite everybody to come see it and news of the resurrection was over it was finished kaput. Bonito so why not just do that.

That was a lot easier. Well, the answer is the reason they couldn't put Jesus's dead body on display is because there was no dead body to get out of the tomb and put on display the tomb was empty, and we've already said that because of the Roman soldiers being there no human being could have emptied the tomb of Jesus. So where did the body go. If not, the resurrection, the way the Bible says is the answer to the empty tomb number three. I'd like to present to you the evidence of the eyewitnesses that you got one witness saw something and they are a credible witness. Well you you got a probability. But if you've got two witnesses, three witnesses, 10 witnesses, 12 witnesses, who all saw the very same thing.

It's not a probability anymore. It is a certainty will friends when it comes to the resurrection of Jesus Christ it's the latter case that we have. Jesus was not seen by one eyewitness or two eyewitnesses or three eyewitnesses, but by hundreds of eyewitnesses who saw and talk to the risen Christ is what the apostle Paul says in first Corinthians 1550 says the risen Christ appeared to Peter and then to the 12 disciples, and after that he appeared to more than 500 people, most of whom are still living as I write this, although some of God and then he appeared to James, and last of all, Paul says he appeared to me also.

This is why Peter said in acts chapter 3. Speaking of the Jewish people in Jerusalem. He said you killed the Prince of life, but God raised him from the dead.

Watch now a fact to which we are all I witnesses the point my friends is that according to every rule of jurisprudence this much eyewitness testimony to the resurrection of Jesus Christ returns as scripts and says a probability into a certainty is that along. What if all these witnesses were liars.

What if all these witnesses were dishonest and crooked and it was all a con game that they were running and they were just conmen and con women. Well, that brings us to the fourth and final piece of evidence to support the resurrection and that is the evidence of their martyrdom.

You see, my friends, virtually every one of these eyewitnesses that we just mentioned gave their life rather than recant their testimony that Jesus had come back from the dead. For example, the apostle James when he refused to recant was arrested and killed by Herod. Acts chapter 12 and Stephen when he refused to recant was stoned to death. Acts chapter 7 and when the apostle Paul refused to recant the resurrection Emperor Nero cut his head off and when Peter refused to recant the resurrection that same Emperor Nero crucified him upside down in Rome now how do we explain the willingness of all these people to die rather than deny the resurrection. Well, it's simple, my friends, they weren't running a con game. Listen when you're running a con game and the con is maybe every person doesn't defective tell the truth some people do. I mean, just watch Law and order.

You understand what I'm saying right. And yet none of these people did this you know why I'll tell you why. It's because these people. It seen the risen Christ with their own eyes. These people had talked to the risen Christ, and they knew what they had seen, and they knew what they had experienced and they refused to recant something that they knew absolutely was true so I summarize the risen Christ is the sine qua non that without which nothing of the Christian faith and the evidence confirming that there is a risen Christ is compelling. Number one we have the evidence of the Roman soldiers, which makes human tampering with the body of Jesus impossible. Number two, we have the evidence of Jesus's enemies who could've stopped Christianity dead in its tracks by simply producing the dead body of Jesus, but they didn't because they couldn't number three we have the evidence of the eyewitnesses hundreds of whom saw the risen Christ with their very own eyes and finally we have the evidence of their martyrdom.

The fact that these very same men and women died rather than recant their testimony about the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Now can I prove to you in a test tube that the resurrection of Jesus Christ happen no I can't but cannot give you such a strong preponderance of evidence that even Judge Judy would be convinced yes I can. As a matter of fact I just did. Now that's as far as we want to go in our discussion of did the resurrection happen because now we want to talk about well, what difference does that make to us and we do this here at McLean Bible church by shouting a little phrase and since some of you may be visiting and I want you to participate. Let's show them Cheryl. What are little phrases showing all right there it is on the screen. So what so are we ready.

This is Easter Sunday. Now, are we ready all right here we go, and I want to hear all you folks on the Internet campus and all you folks allowed in their body and imagine community there we go ready want to pray, that was good.

The sidelong so what say the resurrection. Let's do it. Okay, so it's true. So what difference does that make to my life here today in the 21st century well were to talk about that because friends at the resurrection really did happen. The implications of that for your life and my life are enormous. Their huge lesson if the resurrection is true, it means that Jesus really is Jehovah God in the flesh exactly the way he claimed to be. If the resurrection is true, it means that there really is an afterlife and then heaven and hell really do exist exactly like Jesus said they do and if the resurrection is true, then finally it means that the plan of salvation that Jesus offers us that enables us to escape hell and get in the heaven that it is really the one and only plan that works exactly the way Jesus declared it to be and I want to talk to you about the plan of salvation that the Lord Jesus Christ offers to us in the little bit of time I have left and let me begin by saying that we need to understand that every other plan of salvation offered to us by every other so-called Savior. Whether it's Bhutto or Confucius or Mohammed or Rabbi Schneerson or Joseph Smith or L Ron Hubbard or or any of you know, a secular philosopher doesn't matter we need to understand that all of these plans are based on human effort and human works and human performance of one kind or another. Not a problem is that God says in the Bible that all such human performance systems are worthless when it comes to getting in the heaven and being righteous in his sight and getting eternal life.

Listen to Romans chapter 3 verse 20 it says no one may have merit that no one will be declared righteous in God's sight by observing the law by works of human performance good works religious activity trying to keep the 10 Commandments. All other forms of human effort. The Bible says anybody who tries to approach God like this. I don't care how sincere you may be I don't care how hard you may be trying the Bible says God's answer to this kind of the system will always be no. But you see the plan of salvation that the Lord Jesus Christ offers you and me is completely different. Jesus's plan of salvation is different because it is exclusive.

This is what Jesus said if the one and only way John chapter 14 verse six Jesus said I am the way the truth and the life here comes the keyword. No one. No one comes to the father.

No one gets eternal life. No one gets in the heaven, except through me. This is acts chapter 4 verse 12, which says salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven, not Buda. Not Confucius, not Mohammed, not Rabbi Schneerson. Not L Ron Hubbard. There is no other name under heaven given to men by which we can be. Say you see art art art log stop, take a breath, listen, you know, I will see how you can get into it I can say this I mean in our world and our pluralistic world today in our diversity driven world today in our world where there's tolerance for every religion is the highest value in every religion says work if they're all taken us to the very same place. How in the world can you justify a narrow position like this that Jesus Christ is the only way well it's very simple. My friends, Bhutto's tomb is an empty Confucius's tomb is an empty Mohammed's tomb is an empty Rabbi Schneerson Joseph Smith L Ron Hubbard. Their tombs are not empty, but the tomb of Jesus Christ is MTA hallelujah and you know what we love to say around here. We love to say follow dead Savior and you'll end up just like him, but the great news of the Bible is we don't have a dead Savior. We have a living Savior. The great news of the Bible is we have a risen Savior and listen to what our living risen Savior said he said John 1419, because I live forever.

You will follow me will live forever. Also, he said, are risen living Savior.

John 1126 the person who believes in me shall live.

Even after they die here on earth because I am alive forever and I'm running eternity and ominous see to it. Jesus.

That means that the converse is just as true of what we just said, follow a living Savior and you'll end up just like him.

That's why the Lord Jesus Christ went to the cross for you, my friends, and that's why he rose from the dead for you, my friends, so that you could have that same confidence to face life and to face death. And that's what I'm going to offer you today on behalf of the Lord Jesus right here where you sit. So let's bow our heads together, showing. Let's close our eyes and with our heads bowed in her eyes closed and nobody looking around. Here's what were going to do if you'd like to trade in today. Every other system of salvation you've ever trusted.

If you would like today to trade-in your own human works of righteousness to get you into heaven, a system that God says is bankrupt and if you instead would like to embrace Jesus Christ and what he did on the cross for you and me as your hope of salvation, the response of which will be the God will declare you righteous in his sight today that transaction. We talked about will take place for you today and here's what were going to do.

I'm gonna pray a short prayer out loud. I want you to pray silently right behind me and let's tell God that let's get it done. So here we go. You pray silently I'm gonna pray out loud, Lord Jesus, I come to you today because I want to be able to face life, unafraid and deaf, unafraid, I want to know that I have eternal life. I want to know that I'm going to heaven when I die and I want a life here on earth that's worth getting up for the morning. And so today I give up every other plan of salvation I've ever trusted. Today I give up trying to earn my way into heaven with my own acts of righteousness and instead today I embrace what Jesus did for me on the cross, shedding his blood to pay for my sin is my only hope of eternal life in heaven, or Jesus come into my heart today become my personal Lord and Savior. Forgive my sins grant me eternal life and make me a new creature in Jesus Christ declare me righteous in your sight as you promised you would I commit my heart and life to you today. In Jesus name I pray. Father, I want to pray for the folks who prayed that prayer that you would confirm in their hearts, even as they sit here today that the transaction we talked about God pronouncing them righteous in his judicial site if they were serious has taken place in the heavenly places in they have pastors John 524 sales from death into eternal life never to go back and for the rest of us here have already done that. I pray Lord that you would remind us today that cause the tomb is empty. There is always something right going on every day we may have problems we may have struggles but as long as Jesus is alive in his promises to us are true and amen there is always a reason to have hope and resiliency every day in our life. This is the legacy of the empty tomb for us so Lord encourage our hearts this Easter season with your resurrection, and may it be the dominant feature of our life every day that brings hope and resiliency to our everyday existence. Thank you Lord Jesus for rising from the dead.

We look forward to meeting you eyeball to eyeball one day because you have guaranteed it is our living risen Christ. We pray these things in Jesus name. What are God's people say amen and listening to silently nonchalant Solomon plan is an outrage level on Solomon ministering to listen to today's message, or for more information visit our website. Solomon Thank you for your support. If you would like to contact us, please visit our website or call us at 866788777 we had people join us next time in line to answer one of life's mission question

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