Resurrection Sunday Sermon Notes

SERMON OUTLINE
MINISTER SCOTT MIDDLETON
 
 
Reality Christianity
 
 

CCC Resurrection Sunday

12-Apr-20

Reality Christianity

 

            Whether we acknowledge it or not, the reality is we live in a world that increasingly insulates itself from reality. Even in a time when the most popular shows on TV claim to be reality shows. We do not call it death or dying – it is late or passing, the dearly departed. Especially in America we have tried to sterilize our lives and even our language against anything that might be disagreeable with anyone. Just look at the craziness called political correctness. I recall my dear sweet Grandmother preparing a meal at Easter when the whole family gathered. My uncle went out and cut the head off two chickens that my Mama was going to cook, but they ran around and bleed all over the place, so my Mama pick up the other four and wrung their necks. It broke my heart, to see my Mama hurt an animal. If you wanted chicken you should just go buy one in a package (forget that someone, somehow had to kill it). In our warfare we have learned to develop weapons that keep us far from the battle and just fly over or lob it into the middle of the enemies’ camp, or country and kill with out seeing the devastation of war.

            It is as though we believe if we do not see or hear it then it has not happen, at the very least we are not force to confront and deal with it. We try to remove the responsibility for our actions by claiming a social ill as the cause. We point to environment and family failures as the cause behind our sinful actions.

 

I. Avoiding Reality

            Even our religion has not escaped this avoidance mentality. We have softened the events of the birth of Jesus to one of romantic peace. We are no longer horrified that He had to be born in a barn, that He was born in essence to an un-wed mother (to the shame of Joseph who wanted to put her away). We might read it but we will not dwell over the fact that all the male babies in Bethlehem were slaughtered. We have angels that shouted but we have toned them down to singing. We miss the ordeal of travel must have been for Mary and Joseph –introduction of the donkey, to a family so poor they did the dove offering.

            And what of Jesus Himself; we have pared the claws of the Lion of the Tribe of Judah into a friendly house cat. A few years ago Mel Gibson’s movie of the passion of Christ was too extreme for some people to view, and yet these same people will pay to see blood and gore at the movies watching horror films. People do not want to be confronted with reality. Let me tell you Jesus dealt in reality. Remember the rich young ruler that went away sad because Jesus said you must sell what you have and give to the poor. It was too tough for that young man; however, we do not see Jesus changing the rules to something that young man would like better.

 

So today I feel lead to take you to the words of Jesus that were meant then and now to give people a reality check.

 

Matthew 10.32-38 read NASB cf Wuest Expanded Translation

Do not suppose that I came with the result that my coming would throw peace suddenly upon the earth. I did not come with the result that my coming would throw peace, but a sword. For I came with the result that my coming puts a man at variance with his father, and a daughter against her mother, and the newly married wife against her mother-in-law, and the enemies of a man shall be those of his household. He who has an affection for father or mother above that which he has for me, is not worthy of me. And he who has an affection for son or daughter above that which he has for me, is not worthy of me. And he who does not take his cross and take the same road with me which I take, is not worthy of me.
 

Read Matt 10.34    

34 “Do not think that I came to bring peace on the earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.   “For I came to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law;

           
 
There is a dark side to our salvation.
 

            We have learned or chosen to practice what Dietrich Bonhoffer called cheap grace.  We maybe offended by the cross, nevertheless, it is in the cross that we must glory.

 

II. Our society is in a paradigm shift
 
Most of us do not like it. We want things to be like they were. A paradigm shift occurs with an idea, a product or an event takes over the way we think or how we do something. (Webster defines it as, “an important change that happens when the usual way of thinking about or doing something is replaced by a new and different way.)
 

             In our life time we have had several –  water bottles and cell phones come to mind as two of the biggies. As I said some paradigm shifts occur when people embrace an idea or a technology, but others come about as a result of us confronting reality. In my home town I have seen people adopt a new way of thinking in the aftermath of a tornado, we have watched the world change in the face of WWII. However, the most important paradigm shift came when God allowed us to move from sinner to saint. The reality of the Cross is the start but the shift takes place when you embrace the resurrection. What we are here for today.

 

III. There is a light side
 
             However, more than light it is a glorious side. It starts as a startle whisper – who will roll the stone away for us? Mk 16.2 And that is followed by the greatest of all announcements, He is not here, for He has risen, just as He said !Matt 28.6

Can you imagine the horror of the night when He died compared with the Glory of that Resurrection Sunday. When you knew that everything was going to be alright. The cliché that I love,

“It will be alright in the end;

 if it is not alright,

then it is not the End”

That is a paradigm shift!!!
 

              Do you realize that the resurrection impacted the world in ways we do not always notice-dating in history was divided into B.C. (Before Christ) and AD Anno Domini. The Bible went from the Law of the OT and the Love and Grace of the NT. If you have not made the paradigm shift that embraces Jesus as your Lord and savior we invite you to look into Jesus. Contacts us if you have questions.

 

Conclusion: This morning we are going to partake of the Lord’s Supper as a matter of reality, we take the cup knowing that He did indeed shed His blood for us on that cross; and the bread really does represent His body given for us. You see the reality of the cross and the resurrection is for you and me.

 
 

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