The Power of the Resurrection - RR274M24b
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|This transcript is unedited. It was:|
|Archived by the Mt. Olive Tape Library|
|Digitized, transcribed, and published by Christ Rules|
|Posted by with permission.|
Oh come let us worship and bow down, let us kneel before the Lord our Maker, for He is our god and we are the people of His pasture and the sheep of His hand. Let us pray.
Our most good and glorious God and heavenly Father, we thank You for the opportunity we have to gather together, to begin our week with an acknowledgement that we belong to You and that You have all things in Your care and that we can rest from our labors. We thank You for Your goodness to us and in demanding that we rest one day in the seven to remember You and to stand confident that you are every need. We pray that you would revive us this day so that we can approach Your work tomorrow refreshed. We ask that you would give grace and wisdom to Your church everywhere. We pray that You would enlarge it. We pray particularly for Thy saints who are persecuted for their faith and how are oppressed and we especially pray for those who are seeking to alleviate their hardship and their suffering. We ask for your grace this day as we look at Your word. We pray that You would help us to apply it to our lives. We pray that You would help us to personally grow in grace that we might extend Your kingdom in our own lives and in our families, and in our various spheres of influence. WE pray now for Your blessing now in this time we have together in Your word. We ask this in Christ our Saviors name, Amen.
Our scripture lesson is First Corinthians 15:26-28. First Corinthians 15:26-28 Our subject: The Power of the Resurrection.
“The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.
27 For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him.
28 And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.”
Our knowledge as creatures is limited. Whether by observation or reasoning we have a limited sphere of learning and beyond that unreality takes over. We are creatures and as creatures we have severe limitations. Revelation on the other hand is not limited by what man can know but by what God chooses to reveal to us. It is an aspect of original sin that man as his own would-be-god chooses his reason to sit in judgment over God and His revelation. [00:03:53]
Carnal can thus demand of God ...
Carnal can thus demand of God ‘bring on your revelations’ because Carnal saw his reason as their final judge, judge over God. Against all this, Paul is at total war. For him God’s revelation is sufficient and final. It is determinative. All men and all thinking shall be judged by God and his judgments are beyond all appeal and beyond all criticism. He is the last, that is the final and absolute judgment in every sense of the word. Now it is therefore very, very serious mistake to view the world in terms of the Greco-Roman naturalistic heritage. Churchmen who do so see the world in alien terms with God, Christ and the resurrection as an addition to an already given world whereas the triune God and His purpose precede the world around us. In other words what we have is not a world, a natural world with all that we see in it and then somehow God is the cherry on the sundae, something extra. No! God is the creator. All things were made by Him and without Him was anything made that was made. So to begin with the world as so much thinking does and then see God as a kind of plus to have is all together wrong. God’s sovereign purpose for His creation antedates creation so that the resurrection over God, a resurrection was God’s purpose when the first day of creation had not yet occurred. We have to see the purpose of God as preceding all things else. To view creation from the perspective of fallen man only adding to it the trinity and the resurrection is to assume an anti-Christian stance. It is seriously wrong to see the universe in the beginning with God coming in later for God is the alpha and the omega of all things, the beginning and the ending. [00:07:25]
There is neither meaning nor purpose nor life nor anything...
There is neither meaning nor purpose nor life nor anything apart from Him. Jesus Christ is the revelation of God’s purpose for man. All things shall be put under His feet by the triune God because Jesus Christ sums up the meaning of all creation. He conquers all creation; he destroys the power of sin and death and brings in the new creation. God puts all things under Christ’s feet. It is his purpose to all eternity to create a cosmos in which the God-man Jesus Christ rules over all things under God, under the triune God. The culmination of all this is the Son himself. He shall be subject to the triune God that God may be all in all. The sum-total, the meaning of all things, the incarnate redeemer will be under the triune God. Clearly this is for us a staggering thought that surpasses our reasoning and our imagination. We cannot fathom that extent and eternal dimension of the incarnation and of the resurrection, nor the full measure of our part in the eternal meaning of the resurrection. We look at things beginning at the world, Paul says look at things beginning with God and His purpose before all creation. It is an eternal world without either sin or death nor any curse that God is creating. We shall then eternally serve God in a realm where potentiality and actuality are forever one. In this eternal kingdom the redeemed shall reign forever and ever we are told. [00:10:09]
This vision of an eternal reign in life and in service...
This vision of an eternal reign in life and in service staggers man’s imagination because fallen humanity has come to associate life with sin and death and productivity with conflict. When we think of life we think of death, because our perspective is warped. To imagine unbroken peace, unbroken virtue, eternal life is beyond man’s present mental grasp. For this reason Paul devotes the rest of this chapter to explaining what the resurrection means. We cannot understand even the resurrection body except in terms that are radically alien to our naturalistic view of things. We cannot understand eternal life in terms of the here and now but we can only understand our life today in terms of its eternal purpose. A naturalistic approach to life, to our life, to all life is therefore a false one because we then will have rationalistic answers. Paul says in verse twenty eight that the meaning of the resurrection is that God may be all in all. So that God may be the total meaning of everything, the meaning of the resurrection as well as of everything is to be found only in the resurrection. So this means the reverse of our present perspective. We begin where we are and reason up to God, supposedly, whereas God says you begin with Me, with the resurrection and what that means and then you will understand the meaning of the resurrection. Then you will understand the meaning of your life. The resurrection negated the power of sin and death and also the power of the Roman Empire. Rome had devised the most fearful and torturing method of execution to stress its power and vengeance over its enemies. Now Jesus Christ by his death and resurrection had converted this horrible symbol, the cross, into the world’s greatest life giving symbol. [00:13:53]
Some of you knew Dr...
Some of you knew Dr. [unknown], a very wonderful man and a dear friend. Some years ago he studied the medical aspects of the roman crucifixion and he brought out the extreme physical torture and horror it involved. How it had been carefully studied, how to maximize pain and suffering, agony and to prolong death as long as possible. Men on the cross usually were two, three days in dying. Jesus died in the one day because he had been tortured all night, whipped with a type of studded whip that tore into the flesh and exposed the backbone. Well, Davis’s precise medical account which was published in Reader’s Digest about eighteen years ago at times caused grown men to faint because he brought out clearly the horror of crucifixion. But the reality would have been far more disturbing. But consider what has happened, this horrifying form of death is now celebrated in songs, in the Cross of Christ I Glory, When I Survey the Wondrous Cross, and countless other well-known hymns that exalt and rejoice in the crucifixion because it destroyed the power of sin and death and brought forth the resurrection. Death as the last enemy shall be destroyed and the fullness of life. Our freedom from sin and death shall be eternally ours. The preaching of the cross, Paul declares in First Corinthians 1:18 is foolishness to the perishing but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. The cross is the great dividing line, it spells salvation and resurrection. Paul will tolerate no undermining or underrating of this doctrine and the whole of Corinthians is a resounding statement of that fact. Let us pray. [00:17:13]
Our Lord and our God we thank Thee that the power of...
Our Lord and our God we thank Thee that the power of the resurrection negates and destroys forever the power of sin and death. that Jesus Christ our Redeemer has opened up eternal life for us, has made us members of His kingdom and new creation and that for us, all the sufferings and tribulations of this world are as nothing in the light of the world to come. Teach us therefore Lord to cast our every care upon Thee who careth for us, to walk day by day in the serenity of faith, in the confidence that Thou will never leave us or forsake us, that we may boldly say that the Lord is my helper I shall not fear what man can do unto me. We give thanks unto me oh Lord for this Thy word. Teach us to walk in confidence and in faith, in everything to give thanks, knowing that this is Thy will for us. In Christ’s name, Amen.
Are there any questions now about our lesson?
First Corinthians has never been given the importance it has in the whole of the word of God because here Paul speaks to us to reorient our whole thinking so that we think not in terms of chronologically but theologically, beginning with God, beginning with his purpose, beginning with the power of the resurrection and then we will see the meaning of life more clearly, never truly and fully in this world but we will have the beginning of a true gasp of what it’s all about. To begin naturalistically in terms of this world makes God a kind of afterthought in our thinking and this is why [unknown] who wanted to sit in judgment on all revelations was a man whose life was too miserable to bear repeating. The first and great disaster of his thinking was himself. Because he made himself judge over God’s revelation and over God and he refused to face up to the fact that he had to begin with God. This is the problem by and large in the churches. It’s rationalistic and naturalistic thinking and this is why as I keep stressing, First Corinthians is so essential. [00:22:13]
If there are no questions let us conclude with prayer...
If there are no questions let us conclude with prayer.
Our Lord and our God we give thanks unto Thee for this Thy word. We thank Thee that by Thy sovereign grace Thou hast made us the people of the resurrection, the people of Thy eternal kingdom. Teach us therefore to put aside our thinking, our bitternesses, and our grief’s and to walk in the light of Thy word in the power of the resurrection, knowing that in Jesus Christ we have been called to be more than conquerors. And now go in peace, God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Ghost, bless you and keep you, guide and protect you, this day and always, Amen.