Jesus is Alive! The Hope of the Resurrection
BREAKFAST AND A VISIT WITH THE BUNNY Saturday, April 7, 2007 9:00 a.m.-12 noon Torrance Cultural Arts Center 3330 Civic Center DriveFEE: $15 per person The City of Torrance Community Services Department invites you to join in the fun with the Giant Bunny. Ticket costs are $15 per person limited four tickets per person, Torrance residents only. The program will include breakfast of eggs, croissant and sausages that will be served until 9:30 a.m.; there will be crafts, egg hunt and more. No strollers or baby carriers in main room, please. Franklin Haynes Marionettes will present a special holiday puppet show. There will be a polaroid snapshot with the Bunny and a gift. All children ten years of age and under must be accompanied by an adult. SEATING IS LIMITED!
A Pagan Festival… • Easter was originally a pagan festival honoring Eostre, a Teutonic (Germanic) goddess of light and spring. At the time of the vernal equinox (the day in the spring when the sun crosses the equator and day and night are of equal length), sacrifices were offered in her honor. • As early as the eighth century, the name was used to designate the annual Christian celebration of the resurrection of Christ. (from Nelson's Illustrated Bible Dictionary, Copyright (c)1986, Thomas Nelson Publishers)
The Easter Bunny • Easter Bunny- The rabbit or hare was the symbol of fertility, new life and the moon in ancient Egypt. They called the hare Wenu, an insignia of the rising of the sun Ra, and of the resurrective powers of Osiris.
Easter Eggs • The Egg was a symbol of new life and fertility and decorated and given as gifts during the pagan spring feasts. • It was also banned during lent and then eaten on Easter.
Emperor Constantine Does it Again • Constantine called the Council of Nicea in 325 AD where it was declared Easter was on Sunday. • He called the first Easter Parade in Rome and commanded all the people to wear their best clothes to honor this Holy Day.
Jesus Had Already Warned Them • Jesus had prophesied that He would be killed and rise on the third day • "Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem; and the Son of Man will be delivered to the chief priests and scribes, and they will condemn Him to death, and will hand Him over to the Gentiles to mock and scourge and crucify Him, and on the third day He will be raised up." Matthew 20:18-19
The Rest of the Story • Matthew 27:55-28:10 TLB • And many women who had come down from Galilee with Jesus to care for him were watching from a distance. Among them were Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of James and Joseph, and the mother of James and John (the sons of Zebedee).
When evening came, a rich man from Arimathea named Joseph, one of Jesus' followers, went to Pilate and asked for Jesus' body. And Pilate issued an order to release it to him.
Joseph took the body and wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, and placed it in his own new rock-hewn tomb, and rolled a great stone across the entrance as he left. Both Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were sitting nearby watching.
The next day-at the close of the first day of the Passover ceremonies --the chief priests and Pharisees went to Pilate, and told him, "Sir, that liar once said, 'After three days I will come back to life again.'
So we request an order from you sealing the tomb until the third day, to prevent his disciples from coming and stealing his body and then telling everyone he came back to life! If that happens, we'll be worse off than we were at first."
"Use your own Temple police," Pilate told them. "They can guard it safely enough." So they sealed the stone and posted guards to protect it from intrusion.
Early on Sunday morning, as the new day was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went out to the tomb. • Suddenly there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and rolled aside the stone and sat on it. His face shone like lightning and his clothing was a brilliant white. The guards shook with fear when they saw him, and fell into a dead faint.
Then the angel spoke to the women. "Don't be frightened!" he said. "I know you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified, but he isn't here! For he has come back to life again, just as he said he would. Come in and see where his body was lying. . . . And now, go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and that he is going to Galilee to meet them there. That is my message to them."
The women ran from the tomb, badly frightened, but also filled with joy, and rushed to find the disciples to give them the angel's message. And as they were running, suddenly Jesus was there in front of them!
"Good morning!" he said. And they fell to the ground before him, holding his feet and worshiping him. • Then Jesus said to them, "Don't be frightened! Go tell my brothers to leave at once for Galilee, to meet me there."
The Christians Hope • 1 Corinthians 15:12-20 • But tell me this! Since you believe what we preach, that Christ rose from the dead, why are some of you saying that dead people will never come back to life again? For if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ must still be dead.
The Christians Hope • And if he is still dead, then all our preaching is useless and your trust in God is empty, worthless, hopeless; and we apostles are all liars because we have said that God raised Christ from the grave, and of course that isn't true if the dead do not come back to life again.
The Christians Hope • If they don't, then Christ is still dead, and you are very foolish to keep on trusting God to save you, and you are still under condemnation for your sins; in that case, all Christians who have died are lost! • And if being a Christian is of value to us only now in this life, we are the most miserable of creatures.
He Was the First of Millions! • But the fact is that Christ did actually rise from the dead and has become the first of millions who will come back to life again someday.
Evidence for the Resurrection • There is an abundance of writings both in the gospels as well as from historians of the era verifying the life of Jesus and the facts surrounding His birth, life, death, and resurrection.
Some evidences to look at • The stone was rolled away • The guards were gone • The tomb was empty • The grave clothes were in the same place • It was Sunday
Who Rolled it away? • Jesus? (The Swoon Theory) • How did he fake His death ? • How did He get out of the grave clothes? • How did he move a 2 ton stone? • How did he overpower the Roman guards?
The Disciples Stole the Body? • Is this possible? • They took out the Roman Guards • They Rolled the stone away • They broke the Roman seal • They left the grave clothes behind • They all were put to death over this lie without recanting
The Church started meeting Sundays • Even though Saturday had long been the day of worship, the church began to meet the first day of the week immediately after the resurrection
Jesus Appears to the Disciples 1 Corinthians 15:3-9 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He appeared to Peter, then to the twelve.
Jesus Appears to over 500 • After that He appeared to more than five hundred brethren at one time, most of whom remain until now, but some have fallen asleep; then He appeared to James, then to all the apostles; and last of all, as to one untimely born, He appeared to me also.
This Is the Christian’s Hope • 1 Peter 1:3-5 • Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
Do you Have this Hope? • to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
The Fear of Death brings slavery • Therefore, since the children share in flesh and blood, He Himself likewise also partook of the same, that through death He might render powerless him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, and might free those who through fear of death were subject to slavery all their lives.Hebrews 2:14-16
Jesus is the Resurrection • Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?" John 11:25-26
You Can Have This Hope Now! • And the testimony is this, that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has the life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have the life. • These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life. 1 John 5:11-13