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All Rise - The Resurrection


"12 Now if Christ is preached, that He has been raised from the dead, how do some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? 13 But if there is no resurrection of the dead, not even Christ has been raised; 14 and if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is vain, your faith also is vain. 15 Moreover we are even found to be false witnesses of God, because we testified against God that He raised Christ, whom He did not raise, if in fact the dead are not raised. 16 For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised; 17 and if Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless; you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. 19 If we have hoped in Christ in this life only, we are of all men most to be pitied."
I Corinthians 15:12-19 

Good Morning Beloved,

Welcome to worship!
We're so glad that you're here. 

Today's Message: All Rise - The Resurrection 

Have you ever thought to yourself, I am so tired of the way things are, I wish God would do something new? Well, I believe in this season, in 2020, God’s shaking up the world! In fact, I believe God is turning it upside-down! Why? So that we, you and I, and the world, can wake up!

God is giving us all an opportunity to stop living the way we have been, stop the immorality, stop the self-centeredness, stop the hate for one another, stop putting money over our families, stop putting our material possessions over Him, and start over. I believe that God wants all of the sin, murders, overdoses, adultery, sexual immorality, all the violence and hatred, that has been occurring in our world, to stop. So, God has shaken our very foundations, that we might begin anew. 

The resurrection of Jesus Christ, that singular event in human history that not only paved the way for life eternal, but gives us the promise that sin and death have been defeated and that new life, resurrection life, begins here and now!

In fact, the resurrection of Jesus Christ is the single greatest feat ever to occur, in the annals of all human history. The resurrection is the very capstone in the arch of Christianity. Without it, everything else shatters, without it all else crumbles. But do we fully comprehend this miraculous event?
Because, I believe, when we fully comprehend the significance of resurrection, our lives will be revolutionized. For without the resurrection, there is no hope. Without the resurrection, there would be no Christianity. 
We need to fully comprehend the reality of the resurrection. Because, the resurrection of Jesus Christ is more than just some fairy tale, more than a legend, and more than some religious sermon message or symbol. It is an indisputable historical fact. There is more evidence to support the resurrection of Jesus Christ,

There have been some who have concluded that Jesus just passed out and revived later in His tomb. But that’s absurd! Christ suffered horribly. Let me explain how horribly He suffered and eventually died.

I am compelled to tell you that I feel absolutely no need to try and convince anyone that the resurrection "actually happened." Furthermore, I'll not attempt to convince you of the truth of the resurrection, for only the Spirit can do that. I can and will however, proclaim to you, the good news of the resurrection. And, I can also testify to it’s impact upon humanity, upon our lives, and certainly upon my own. I can point you to reflections of the resurrection that have occurred and continue to occur, all around us.

There are literally, millions and millions of occurrences each day, in which God is effecting change, bringing life out of death, victory out of defeat. All things that all point to that great and wonderful day when God’s promise in Jesus Christ will be realized and we will know first hand resurrection life most fully in the Kingdom of Heaven. But we don’t always see these things, and when we do see them, we don’t often connect them.

First, let's bow our heads in prayer.

Heavenly Father,

We are again so grateful for Your truths presented to us in Your written Word, through Your Holy Spirit. Thank You for those You have gathered together with us today, both here and around the world. Lord, I am so grateful for each of those You have given me to shepherd. We pray that You would renew in us the hope of the resurrection, and new gratitude, lest we would not forget Your sacrifice. Thank You for the expressions of Your grace, loving kindness and mercy shown toward those who love and obey You.

Lord, as we rejoice in the hope and promise of our resurrection, we cannot help but be reminded, that there are many who will rise, not in glory, but to receive a body suited for eternal death and separation. We pray that You might burden our hearts, to proclaim the truth to them about sin, judgment, and death, and then about the gospel of grace.

Lord, we pray that You might help us, to bring people to the knowledge of the gospel and of Jesus Christ, and the glory of the resurrection. The precious gift of salvation overwhelms us, Lord. For, we are unworthy, so undeserving, we are humbled, and so grateful for such grace.
In Christs' precious name

Open with me your Bibles, to the fifteenth chapter of I Corinthians. As we continue our study in I Corinthians chapter 15, last time we studied the first eleven verses. Today, we'll be looking at verse 12-19. Allow me to read to from this rich and marvelous text in I Corinthians 15:12-19.

Christs' suffering began at the Garden of Gethsemane where Luke 22:44 records, "And being in agony He was praying very fervently; and His sweat became like drops of blood, falling down upon the ground.", and his suffering continued throughout his interrogations before Annas and Caiaphas, where he was hit in the face, spit upon and beaten, and continued on as he was taken to Pilate, where he was flogged, given a crown of thorns, spit upon and struck on the head again and again. The flogging alone was so brutal that it is amazing he lasted until His crucifixion.
And then, there was the crucifixion itself.

The Roman system of crucifixion had been so intricately tweaked, in order to produce the most horrendous pain. In fact, it is "out of the cross," that the word excruciating, literally had to be invented, in order to fully tabulate its horror. Roman soldiers used 5 to 7 inch spikes, in which to hammer him to the wooden beams of the cross.

In John 19:31-37, which gives the account of the Roman guards breaking the legs of the thieves to hasten their death by asphyxiation at the request of the religious leaders, in order that their bodies would not be left on the crosses during the Sabbath. But when they came to Jesus, he was already dead and they speared His side instead. This produced a sudden flow of blood and water. If he wasn’t dead, he would be dead now.

And there is Mark 15:44-45 which says, "Pilate wondered if He was dead by this time, and summoning the centurion, he questioned him as to whether He was already dead. And ascertaining this from the centurion, he granted the body to Joseph." Jesus was dead. There is no doubt about it! 

Then we come to the empty tomb. Matthew 27:51-66, records the account of Jesus’ burial. Joseph of Arimathea, himself a disciple of Jesus, a member of the Sanhedrin, placed Jesus’ body in his tomb. This account also verifies that Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were both sitting opposite the tomb, so they knew where it was. And the next day the chief priests and the Pharisees gathered together with Pilate came up with a plan to specifically thwart any plan the disciples might have of stealing Jesus’ body and faking a resurrection by getting Pilate to order a guard to seal the tomb, and "make it as secure as you know how."

There are some who might say that the Romans or the Jews stole the body, but there again, that makes no sense either. What motive would they have had? That would only encourage something they wanted squelch! Instead, after Jesus had risen, and the guards had reported everything that had happened, the chief priests bribed them to circulate a false story that the disciples had stolen the body.

In Matthew 28, the tomb was discovered empty. Why? Because it was empty. Nobody got the tombs mixed up. Nobody stole the body. It was empty, period. Why? Because Jesus was RAISED from the dead.

One of the greatest proofs of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ was His many post-resurrection appearances. While there were many appearances, for the sake of time, I want to look at just one of these appearances. Listen, as I read to you from I Corinthians 15:6, "After that He appeared to more than five hundred brethren at one time, most of whom remain until now, but some have fallen asleep."
There were more than 500 people who witness the Resurrected Christ! There were surely many people that could testify to the trustworthiness of this statement. Several hundred. Paul’s statement had plenty of eyewitness testimony to back it up or to disprove it if it had been false.

The reality is that a transformation in Jesus’ followers took place. This is even further evidence of the reality of the resurrection. This group of disciples went from hiding to boldly preaching in a very, very short time. They were willing to go through excruciating torture even unto death. I do not know about any of you, but personally, I have never met anyone who willingly subjects themselves to horrendous torture and dies for something that they know to be a lie!
The only reason is, they knew it to be true. They knew Jesus had died, they knew the tomb was empty tomb, and even more than this, they saw Him... Resurrected.

And the reality of the resurrection’s transforming power doesn't stop with the eyewitnesses, no, within weeks of the resurrection, not just one, but an entire community of thousands and thousands of Jews were willing to give up the very sociological and theological traditions that had once given them their national identity.

In Acts 17:6, some angry Jews in Thessalonica said of Paul and his comrades that "When they did not find them, they began dragging Jason and some brethren before the city authorities, shouting, “These men who have upset the world have come here also;"

The original followers and those who would hear in that first century were so radically transformed that they affected their culture! And that transformation of people has continued to happen for over 2000 years!

I have had a number of people ask, "Why should Christ’s resurrection be important to me?"
Remember, the beginning of this message stated that without the resurrection there would be no Christianity? And if there were no resurrection, all else crumbles? Now, allow me to add, without the resurrection, I am nothing more than a liar, and all I teach is in vain.

Allow me to point a few things that help us understand the importance of the resurrection for us. The first is, the Resurrection proves Jesus is God. Christ’s resurrection proves He was God, and not an imposter, or just a prophet as some religions have claimed.

In fact, in John 2:19, you may recall that Jesus chased out the money changers in the Temple because they’d turned God’s Temple into a market place, a den of thieves. The Jews asked Him, "What miraculous sign can you show us to prove your authority to do all this?" Do you remember what Jesus told them"

Allow me to read it to you: "Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up."

They thought he was referring to the Temple building they were in. But verse 21 tells us He was referring to His body. He delivered on His miraculous sign, thus proving who He was.

In Romans 1:1-4, the apostle Paul opened the letter to the Romans like this:

"Paul, a bond-servant of Christ Jesus, called as an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God, which He promised beforehand through His prophets in the holy Scriptures, concerning His Son, who was born of a descendant of David according to the flesh, who was declared the Son of God with power by the resurrection from the dead, according to the Spirit of holiness, Jesus Christ our Lord."
Then, the Resurrection proves Jesus to be the Son of God and brings us face to face with the fact that He is who He said He was, claimed to be, God. The founder of every other religion died and stayed dead. Jesus rose again. This is important to you because it forces you to make a decision in your life. Since Christ is who He claimed to be, how will you respond to Him?

The Resurrection makes your salvation possible. The Resurrection makes your salvation possible.
Beloved, allow me to just be very clear about this, without the Resurrection of Jesus Christ every person is still dead in their sins. Let me just say that again, while you allow that to sink in for a moment, without the the Resurrection of Jesus Christ every person is still dead in their sins! I can't speak for you, so I'll speak only for myself here, I not only believe in the Resurrection of Jesus, I am eternally grateful for it.

Romans 4:25 says this, "He who was delivered over because of our transgressions, and was raised because of our justification." So, if Jesus died and was never resurrected from the dead, then his death did nothing to accomplish our justification. It was God's raising Him from the dead, that showed acceptance of Christ’s sacrifice. If God had left Jesus in the grave, then the sacrifice was not accepted and not one of us has received cleansing from their sin. 

Does anyone else remember what Romans 6:23 teaches us? "For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." 

And since the penalty for sin is death, to still be under condemnation, means that all people will be given the ultimate penalty for their sins! And some of you are practically dying over a paper cut? 

Allow me to read to you I Corinthians 15:13-17, "But if there is no resurrection of the dead, not even Christ has been raised; and if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is vain, your faith also is vain. Moreover we are even found to be false witnesses of God, because we testified against God that He raised Christ, whom He did not raise, if in fact the dead are not raised. For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised; and if Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless; you are still in your sins."

Beloved, in other words, if Christ did not rise, then you are still dead in your sins, your Christian faith is worthless and anyone you’ve known who died a believer is just as damned as an unbeliever. If there had been no resurrection, then Christ proved Himself nothing more than a self-deceived prophet or mad man and all of us are fools for trusting Him.

BUT, thankfully, as we’ve already seen, the resurrection of Jesus Christ did occur and furthermore, is a historical fact.

So hear the Good News. your faith in Christ is not in vain. This is critical to you today because Jesus’ being alive means the way to God has been "paved," by Christ and you and I, can be made right with Him and have relationship with Him today. The Resurrection of Jesus Christ makes your resurrection and mine possible!

You and I are spirit and body. We are spiritual and we have physicality. Unlike the beliefs of the Greek philosophers who thought the body was evil and something we should want to be released from, God made our bodies as part of who we are and they complete us. Right now our bodies are affected by sin and die, but God has a plan to resurrect our bodies in glory and to perfection.
Now, I know some of you will appreciate this, like myself, but can you imagine, no more aches and pains? No more "Watching your waistline!"

Our resurrected bodies, our current bodies transformed, will be bodies completely perfect and dominated by the Spirit rather than our sinful nature. II Corinthians 5 lets us know that our disembodiment at death, for the believer, results in being in God’s presence. But the same passage also lets us know that Paul desired to be "clothed" with his heavenly dwelling and not "naked," or disembodied. So we can conclude that while our family members and friends that have died, who were believers are very much enjoying the presence of the Lord, this is not their final eternal state. God has their bodily resurrection planned because He never planned permanent disembodiment for us.

Romans 8:23-24, "And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body. For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope; for who hopes for what he already sees?"

I'd like to point out, that Romans 8:23, is referred to as a deposit elsewhere in Scripture. I'm not going to read these, but feel free to jot them down and read on your own. They are Ephesians 1:14, II Corinthians 1:22 and II Corinthians 5:5. 

His indwelling in us is the guarantee that much more is on the way. We have  received the down payment of the Spirit, yet we are awaiting the full transaction that will come to fruition when our bodies are resurrected and we live forever with Him. And our resurrection is only made possible by the resurrection of Jesus Christ. And, as Stanley Horton points out, “Christ’s resurrection and ours are part of one and the same plan of God.

In Closing...

Christs' resurrection guarantees our own bodily resurrection. Scripture refers to Him as being the "first fruits," which guarantees the whole harvest, of which you and I are a part, if we are in Christ. In other words, since He was raised first, therefore, we know we too will be raised.

Our spirits have been saved, however, we are awaiting the day our bodies are completely made new and free of the weight of sin, totally dominated by the Holy Spirit. "For in this hope we were saved." Resurrection is our hope. Philippians 3:20-21 tells us that we are awaiting a Savior from heaven who "will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body." So, when Christ returns we will see Him and we will be transformed! O' beloved, what a blessed hope this is indeed!

I'm working on the ad campaign now, see what you think: The Resurrection: The ultimate extreme makeover, heavenly bodies for eternal living. Eh? Eh? Not so much huh?

When Jesus on the cross, He paid for your sins therefore, you’ve been given a marvelous opportunity to not only be "made over.", but to become a new creation and to have eternal fellowship with God. That’s the joy of Resurrection morning. God can fix you spiritually and now you can have the hope that He will one day complete your redemption by redeeming your body to be like Jesus’ body!


Is there anyone who hasn't yet received Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior?
Are you willing to accept His salvation today?

And for those of you are saved, can you see how relevant the resurrection is to your life?
Without it you have no hope, and without it, you have no life.

And now may the Lord bless you and keep you;

the Lord make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;

The Lord lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace.

Now and forever, in Jesus' name

Copyright © 2019-2020 All Rights Reserved

The Brian Monzon Ministries



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