READ | SERMON NOTES
Summary | What happened at Easter? Following the defeat and despair when Christ was crucified, the disciples were amazed on Easter morning. They had come to pay their respects but found the stone rolled away from the sealed tomb. The tomb was empty, and they were greeted by angels with the message that Jesus is alive!
The apostle Peter was amazed, and he later testified that “God has given us … a new life that has a confidence which is alive because Jesus Christ has come back to life … an inheritance that cannot be destroyed or corrupted and cannot fade away, kept in heaven and guarded by God’s power.” (1 Pet 1:3-5)
What happened for us at Easter!!
First, Easter tells us that Christianity is True. The women at the tomb were reminded of Jesus’ words that the Son of Man must be handed over to sinners and be crucified and on the third day rise again. (v6-7) They realized that Jesus had said this and it had happened. Easter shows that everything Jesus said, taught, promised and claimed to be is true. Dr. Donald English noted that the fundamental question about Christianity is whether it is true or not. It is true, because it is based on Jesus, the Son of God, raised from the dead. Our hope is alive because Jesus Christ has come back to life. When we are disillusioned and troubled, we can put our trust in Jesus and take heart, for He has overcome the world. (Jn 16:33)
Second, God is Bigger than Our Problems. Easter proves that God is bigger than our problems. God could turn everything around. The cross was initially meant as an act of cruelty and instrument of infamy and disaster; but with Easter we can glory in the cross. Through the crucifixion, God miraculously redeemed and took away the sins of the world. We can now look back at this event with joy. Despite the struggles in life, Easter gives us the assurance that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to His purpose. (Rm 8:28)
Third, Easter shows us that Life is Beyond Death. At funerals we sorrow but it is not without hope. God has overcome at Easter. Beyond this short span of life, there is much more. Easter showed that death cannot rob Jesus of His short life. Christ is risen, is with us in Spirit, and will come again. Easter people need not be threatened in life or in death. We can ask – “where, O death is your victory or sting?” We should stand firm and know that our labour in the Lord is not in vain. (1 Cor15:55-58)
This Easter, let us remember that Jesus is true and we can trust in Him. God is bigger than our problems and can turn things around. The cross is now a symbol of victory and a promise of life beyond death.
(Sermon notes by Denis Koh)
PONDER | REFLECTION QUESTIONS
1. What are my great fears in life? How does the Bible help me address these fears?
2. What are the failures/disasters in my past that still impact me? Has God redeemed these areas in my life?
3. Would I consider my ‘sudden & untimely’ death a loss or a gain? Why?