Easter Sermon, Does the Resurrection Give You Joy?

Show the video from Christmas Eve (That I did not show) that traces Christmas to Easter

 

One of our leaders emailed the minutes of a team meeting and wrote something like: “Put your hands in the air, jump up and down the minutes are attached!” I was excited to see the minutes, but I hope I am more excited about the resurrection.

The definition of “joy.”

  1. a feeling of great pleasure and happiness.
synonyms: delight, great pleasure, joyfulness,

verb

literary

rejoice.

Let’s think about children and joy. Last summer I was cutting the grass when all of a sudden I see my two year old, almost three year old, run out the back steps, get on her tricycle and ride up and down the drive way with a huge smile on her face. I saw joy, I saw excitement on her face. [This was not Meagan not paying attention] Now, we have a somewhat large yard and I was on a riding mower and I know her mother would not have let her out by herself. I was looking for Meagan but she was nowhere to be found which meant that Mercedes had found a way out. Mercedes loves to play outside. I love seeing joy on her face. This makes me think of the numerous moments of joy on a child’s face. I have seen it from three, going on four years now. But I think of holidays.

Last Christmas was a memorable one because Mercedes is really able to understand what is going on. We carefully set out the gifts so that she could see them. She came out of her room and let out a happy scream and said “Presents!”

Connect presents with joy in our salvation.

Did you have the same joy when you received Christ?

Do we have joy about our salvation?  (Psalm 51:12)

Theme:

Today, my focus is that I believe the resurrection gave the disciples joy and we need to have joy as well.

Let’s read Mark 1:1-8:

When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go to anoint Jesus’ body.  Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb  and they asked each other, “Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?”

 But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away.  As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed.

 “Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter, ‘He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.’”

Trembling and bewildered, the women went out and fled from the tomb. They said nothing to anyone, because they were afraid.

  1. Rejoice! Have great joy, Jesus lives!
    1. So the disciples go from huddling in a room to I think rejoicing.
    2. Now, the New Testament never specifically says that they jumped up and down, but I would say they must have. Build on that. Make that contrast as sharp as I can.
      1. One moment they are huddled the next moment they see Jesus.
    3. Consider the rest of the New Testament is about them spreading this amazing message, so they must have had some excitement.
    4. Verse 8 has the women leaving the tomb with trembling and astonishment. I think they had a type of holy fear. They were amazed. They did not know what to think of this.
      1. Notice that the women go to the tomb first.
    5. In John’s Gospel chapter 20 and verse 2 the women run and tell Peter and the disciple whom Jesus loved (Probably John) about this. They ran, probably in excitement, in joy.
    6. Then in verses 3-4 the two disciples run to the tomb. Their lives are being turned upside down.
    7. Thomas responds when he sees Jesus by stating, “My Lord and My God.” He worshipped. (John 20:28)
    8. Now, think about the disciples, many of them were fishermen before Jesus called them and then they travel with Jesus for some three years. Now, they thought that they were going to reign with Jesus, but now He is crucified. I bet this was a real downer. I wonder if they were a bit depressed. I wonder if they were wondering what they were going to do.
    9. Do you think they were thinking about fishing again? They were not that good at it. Every time they are fishing they did not catch anything until Jesus would come along. Jesus would come along and they would think, “What do you know about fishing?” Yet, they followed His advice and caught fish. (Luke 5; John 21)
    10. They were at a loss for their life had revolved around Jesus and then He was gone. But He really was not gone.

Low in the grave he lay, Jesus my Savior,

                    waiting the coming day, Jesus my Lord!

Refrain:

                    Up from the grave he arose;

                    with a mighty triumph o’er his foes;

                    he arose a victor from the dark domain,

                    and he lives forever, with his saints to reign.

                    He arose! He arose! Hallelujah! Christ arose!

 

Vainly they watch his bed, Jesus my Savior,

                    vainly they seal the dead, Jesus my Lord!

                    (Refrain)

 

Death cannot keep its prey, Jesus my Savior;           

he tore the bars away, Jesus my Lord!

  1. So jump, up and down, put your hands in the air, rejoice!
  2. I think we can learn from children such as Mercedes and her joy. We can learn and apply their joy at holidays. Have we lost our joy?
  3. John 15 the vine and the branches: Jesus talks about joy.
  4. Joy can be spontaneous and immediate, “Presents.” We as believers can have joy that is lasting. We have long term joy that sustains us.
  5. Many times, I arrive home and I hear Mercedes say: “Daddy’s home!” as she runs to the door. Jesus is alive, He has risen! Are we rejoicing? Are we excited? Do we have the joy of a child when their parent arrives? How do we look when we arrive at worship to meet with Jesus? I am applying this to myself as well.
  6. You say, “I want the joy, I want to rejoice, but I have lost the joy.” Let me answer that as best as I can.
    1. Everyone goes through dry spells spiritually. That does not mean that God is further away. Nor does it mean that the individual has a sin issue.
    2. I will encourage you to spend extra time in prayer and extra time in the Scriptures. If you are not connected to God through prayer and the Scriptures you will eventually lose joy.
  • I will encourage you to spend time with the church. If you are not connected to the church you will eventually lose joy.
  1. I encourage you to further your church involvement. If you think Sunday is your duty and then you’re done, you will eventually lose joy or not gain joy.
  2. I encourage you to listen to Hymns and songs, read Hymns and songs. (Eph. 5:19; Col. 3:16).
  3. I encourage Christian radio and/or podcast.
  • Ask Jesus to restore the joy of your salvation (Psalm 51:12).
  • Pray Psalm 42: “As the deer pants for the water, so my soul longs for You.”
  1. Pray the Psalms.
  2. Just some initial suggestions.
    1. Share your joy, remember that we never lose it. Jesus keeps filling us up.
  1. Rejoicing has applications:
    1. I no longer have to fear death because Jesus rose from the grave. 1 Cor. 15:55 there is no longer a sting in death.
      1. In 1 Cor 15:3-8 the Scriptures write about Jesus appearing to the disciples and later over 500 people all at the same time. Again, Jesus showed many that He has been resurrected.
      2. Later on in 1 Cor. 15:13-15 the Scriptures tell us that if Christ was not raised from the dead our faith is in vain! This means that our faith is useless. Later on in that same chapter the Scriptures write about our hope in the resurrection. You see, because Christ rose from the dead we have hope. We have hope that when we die it is not the end. We have hope that when our family members and friends who are Christians die they are not gone, but with Christ in eternal paradise. We can see them again because they will have resurrected bodies as Jesus did. Paul wrote, “Where O death is your sting.” (1 Cor. 15:55) There is no sting because we have eternal life in perfect bodies.
    2. The resurrection separates Christianity from other religions. I must take confidence in that.
    3. I must rejoice that my savior lives.
    4. Rejoicing must cause me to commit: Luke 9:23; Romans 12:1-2; Galatians 2:20
    5. Rejoicing must cause me to share the Gospel. (Matt. 28:19-20; Mark 16:15)

Close:

When I was a child, on Christmas, my birthday and Easter I received gifts (probably too many definitely too many). On Christmas and Easter we would go to my grandparent house in the afternoon and I was always eager to share the news of what I received. After my birthday, I could not wait to share with my friends what gift I received.

When we have joy we share it. Joy is the gift that keeps on giving if we allow it to.

Share Jesus He has risen!

Do you believe that Jesus died on the cross paying the price for your sins? Sins are the wrong things we do.

The Bible says that all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). The Bible says that the penalty for sin is death (Romans 6:23). The Bible says that Jesus is the way the truth and the life and no one comes to the Father except by Him. (John 14:6). The Bible teaches that sin separates us from God (Isaiah 59:2). The Bible says that God will not let the guilty go unpunished (2 Thess 1:8-9). Yet, the Bible teaches that God loves the people of the world (John 3:16). That is a dilemma. God can’t tell a lie or He wouldn’t be God (Numbers 23:19). God doesn’t change His mind (1 Sam 15:29). That is why God sent Jesus. The guilty must go punished. Jesus took our punishment on the cross. The penalty of sin is death but the free gift of God is eternal life through Jesus, who is the way, the truth and the life.

Pray

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