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Easter Sunrise

Sunday Morning Bible Study

February 1, 2015


Do people see Jesus? Is the gospel preached? Does it address the person who is: Empty, lonely, guilty, or afraid to die?  Does it speak to the broken hearted? Does it build up the church? Milk – Meat – Manna Preach for a decision Is the church loved? Regular:  2900 words    Communion: 2500 words  Video=75wpm


I have a video to show, and I’m afraid it may offend some of you.

Video:  AIG commercial – Tackle the Risk

Why did I show the video?
The rugby players looked cruel at first, tackling all sorts of unsuspecting people.
It’s not until later that you realize that they were actually saving the people from some tragedy.
I’m afraid I may offend some of you today, I may tackle you a bit roughly today.

But pay attention to what I’m hoping you’ll be saved from.

Some of the things I may say over the next few minutes may offend you.  They may make you feel uncomfortable.
There’s a reason I’m “tackling” these things.

Yesterday I did my 65th funeral for the wife of one of our dear friends.

At yesterday’s funeral, I shared the story of something that Jesus did about a week or so before His own death.

Jesus had a friend named Lazarus who lived in Bethany with his two sisters Mary and Martha.

Jesus loved this family.

When Jesus got word that Lazarus was very, very sick, Jesus waited a couple of days, and then headed to Bethany.

(John 11:17–25 NLT) —17 When Jesus arrived at Bethany, he was told that Lazarus had already been in his grave for four days. 18 Bethany was only a few miles down the road from Jerusalem, 19 and many of the people had come to console Martha and Mary in their loss. 20 When Martha got word that Jesus was coming, she went to meet him. But Mary stayed in the house. 21 Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if only you had been here, my brother would not have died. 22 But even now I know that God will give you whatever you ask.” 23 Jesus told her, “Your brother will rise again.” 24 “Yes,” Martha said, “he will rise when everyone else rises, at the last day.” 25 Jesus told her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Anyone who believes in me will live, even after dying.

Now you may be asking yourselves, when is the pastor going to “tackle” me?  When is he going to offend me?

Here’s the offensive part.

Unless Jesus returns soon, every single person in this room will one day face death just like Lazarus, every single one.

Death has some amazing statistics.  Every single person born on this planet dies someday.
You will die.

The reason I’m willing to risk offending you by reminding you of this is not because I’m going to keep you from dying, but my hope is to help you …

Video: AIG Tackle Cement Truck
…avoid the cement truck when you “cross the street” at death.

There is a place in the town of Bethany in Israel considered to be the tomb of Lazarus.

A photo journalist was thinking of making a video of the tomb when this happened:
Video:  SourceFlix – The Lazarus Tomb

That doorway with the orange sign over it is the tomb of Lazarus.

Even today, people are still dying in Bethany.

The real issue for you this morning is this – what will your life be like after death?  Can you know what will happen?

Jesus not only made this bold statement about being the “resurrection and the life”, but He went ahead and proved it by raising Lazarus from the dead.

Jesus went to the tomb of Lazarus and commanded that they roll the stone in front of the tomb away.  He then called out with a loud voice, “Lazarus come forth!”
The man who had been dead for four days came hopping out of the tomb, still wrapped up like a mummy in his graveclothes.

And if that wasn’t enough, a week later when Jesus Himself was crucified and buried in the tomb, Jesus rose from the dead to prove that He is the resurrection and the life.

Maybe you’re wondering if Jesus really did rise from the dead.
My message at the next service is titled “Proof of Life”.  We’ll talk about just how real the resurrection is.

Maybe you’re wondering why it’s a big deal that Jesus rose from the dead.

The resurrection gives us hope for what happens after this life, after we die.
Jesus actually rose from the dead, and He promised that if we will trust Him, we too will have eternal life on the other side.
The resurrection also gives us hope that we can endure whatever difficulties we face in life, because to be honest, we all face difficulties.
(Romans 8:11 NLT) The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you. And just as God raised Christ Jesus from the dead, he will give life to your mortal bodies by this same Spirit living within you.

That’s life now, that’s power to face the difficulties we will face in life.


In October, 1871, Horatio Spafford, a wealthy Chicago businessman, lost most of his worldly possessions in the famous Chicago fire.

In the autumn of 1873, Spafford placed his wife, Anna, and their four children on the Ville du Havre sailing from New York to France. He was forced to stay in the United States for several more weeks to settle some business matters before he could journey to join the family in Europe.

The evening of November 21 the Ville du Havre was making its way peacefully towards France when in the middle of the night it was suddenly rammed by another vessel, the Lochearn.

Spafford’s wife survived, but all of the children were lost at sea.  Spafford heard of the shipwreck but didn’t know the fate of his family.

A cable arrived from Wales stating that the four daughters were lost at sea, but his wife was still alive. He was crushed with what had happened. All night he walked the floor in anguish. Toward the morning he turned to his friend, Major Whittle, and said, “I am glad to trust the Lord when it will cost me something.”

On the way across the Atlantic to join his wife, the captain announced that they were now passing the place where the Ville du Havre was wrecked. This is what Spafford wrote that day …

When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.

Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
Let this blessed assurance control,
That Christ has regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul.

My sin, oh, the bliss of this glorious thought!
My sin, not in part but the whole,
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more,
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!

And Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
Even so, it is well with my soul.


How can anyone say “It is well with my soul” after having lost their children?

We can say it because we know the God of Hope, the One who raises the dead, the One who has an eternal home in heaven waiting for us.

He is the resurrection.