Sunday, May 5, 2019

The "40 Days" continued

Last week = "the 40 days" - Acts 1:3 - for 40 days between the Resurrection and Pentecost, Christ appeared to various people at various times.
Disciples were to be (1) faithful followers
                                (2)  bold witnesses (in Greek = martyr)
The 40 days helped equip them for that!!!

These appearances:
I)  Increased Confidence in the resurrection.
What if... there had ONLY been the Easter morning appearances?
Important because the Resurrection = the Proof!!  Rom. 1:4  that Jesus is who He said He was.

II.)  Additional Information about the Christian Faith
What questions were asked during this time?  What teachings during the 40 days?
Questions of history and doctrine and practice.
So --- Eph. 4:1

Jesus took this time to prepare these men to change the world.  The doctrine of the New Testament was built on the history of the Old Testament with new teachings and the result was practice (lifestyle)

Continuation from last week:
III.  Insights into our future state
Question?  After death - what??  (question is ancient and universal - everyone inherently knows there is life after death)
Problem:  Reliable witnesses?  (information)  - have those who supposedly died and came back - but
returnees = rare, questionable, fallible!

Contrast Jesus:  He Returned ... (1) As He Predicted
                                                 (2)  In a glorified state - totally different state but still the same
                                                 (3)  having overcome death (contrast Lazarus - released, escaped)

Example:  Luke 24:36-43  - (post-resurrection appearances:)

  • appeared, suddenly..... in closed, locked room
  • also, disappear!  vanish!  (example:  Emmaus Road disciples)
  • Sometimes recognized immediately!!  Other times NOT recognized  (at least not immediately)
  • Cooked breakfast & served it!  & ate with them!! - Acts 1:4 - "on 1 occasion while eating with His disciples"
  • All with (1) real, physical body
  •             (2) His own body
  •             (3) yet a glorified body!! - Luke 24:36-43  more than restored.  = Renewed!!  improved, better!  The same yet very different!!!
1 John 3:2 - We will be like Him in His resurrected state.

IF His Resurrection is true,
IF John is correct,
Then it necessitates a GENERAL RESURRECTION!! - Not just historical, but coming event.

1 Cor. 15:20-23
Rom. 8:18-23
1 Thess. 4:13-18
These mean:  (1)  a physical body
                     (2)  your body  (identity!)
                     (3)  absolute (complete) redemption

How???  1 Cor. 15:35-38, 42-44, 51-52
Impossible!!! Try creation!! - verbal/ ex nihilo!!  (out of nothing!!)

Which leads to:
IV.  Confidence in the Face of Death
ie:  He defeated death --- for us!
on one hand, we will still die.  however, death does not have the last word, final state - is a defeated foe
1 Cor. 15:24-26, Rev. 20:14, Rev. 1:18

Must distinguish between  (1) process of dying and (2) the state of death - example:  martyrs can have FEAR and still have courage!!
Note:  your greatest battle, struggle, issue with DEATH may Not be your own!!!
So " the Christian Hope" based on "THE Resurrection" - ! Cor. 15:19-20

Like the disciples, we are called to be:
(1) faithful in our walk (lifestyle)
(2) bold in our witness
in spite of ... (1)  the delay of 2000+ years
                    (2) world's view  (skepticism, mockery, hostility)
                    (3)  life's difficulty

Christ gave the "40 days" to help equip us for this!!!!

Closing Scripture:  Rom. 8:31-32, 38-39

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