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Charles Stanley — The Triumphant Message of the Resurrection

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Most of the crowd spread their coats in the road, and others were cutting branches from the trees and spreading them in the road. The crowd is going ahead of him. And those who followed were shouting. When he had entered Jerusalem, all the city was stirred. Jesus took some bread and after a blessing, he broke it. This is my body given for you. Do this in remembrance of me. Please, take this cup of suffering away from me. I want your will to be done and not mine. Those who had seized Jesus led him away to Caiaphas, the high priest. I adjure you by the living God whether you're the Christ, the son of God. Said you were a king, some king. I am innocent of this man's blood. It is your responsibility. Take him. Father, forgive them. For they do not know what they are doing.

Now, after the sabbath, as it began to dawn towards the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to look at the grave. All the gospel writers gave us great detail about the resurrection of Jesus, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John. And you would think that after all of that that most anybody would believe that Jesus Christ rose from the dead. In the book of acts, for example, the book of acts is the story of those apostles going around proclaiming that Jesus Christ had risen from the dead, that he ruled and reigned in heaven. If you read through the epistles in the New Testament you'll find Jesus Savior, Lord and master, the one we're to follow, to obey, to praise. And to adore. And to love. And to look for his return one of these days.

And when you come to the last book of the Bible the book of the revelation you'll find the Lord Jesus Christ ruling and reigning in heaven, getting ready to subdue his enemies, coming back to take us all home with him. Now, you would think that anybody who looked at the word of God would believe that this is what he's teaching us that Jesus Christ is risen from the dead but it was a very difficult thing for even his disciples to believe in the resurrection. In fact, if you would examine the scriptures, you would discover that nobody really believed it. For example, Jesus tried to tell his disciples several times, here's what's going to happen. I'm going to be falsely accused. Pharisees and Sadducees. I'm going to suffer many things at their hands and I'll be crucified. I'll die but I'll rise again. They never got that. He said it over and over again. They never got it. It was so foreign to them. Because this is a man who said, you've seen me, you've seen the Father. I and the Father are one. My Father could send down legions of angels. None of that did they get. It just didn't fit their expectation of Jesus, so they didn't believe it.

So Jesus was crucified. They saw it. They believed that part. And they went away saddened, broken hearted, hopeless and helpless. The reason I know they didn't believe it, when the women came to bring spices, why did they bring spices? They came to bring spices to deal with a dead body. They didn't expect Jesus to be gone. This is why they were so shocked when the tombstone was rolled away. And then, of course, when they ran back to tell the disciples that Jesus was not there that he had risen, what was their reply? They said nonsense. That was their response. Now, here the people that walked with Jesus all those years, those three years, watched all these miracles, believed the things he said, but when he came to his dying they could accept that after they saw it. But to believe that he would rise from the dead even though he said it over and over and over again, they thought it was nonsense.

And then of course, those two disciples of his walking along the road to Emmaus and Jesus sided up with them and they began to talk. They made this statement. Talking about all the things going on in Jerusalem. They said, we had hoped. That is, we thought it was going to be this way. And then, of course, you remember that Thomas even after the other apostles had said to him, we have seen him, he said, I'm not going to believe it until I can see him and touch him which he had the privilege of doing. Isn't it amazing that those who walk so close with him, who believe so much of what he said, when it came to his resurrection, they just couldn't accept the idea. Imagine the kind of hopelessness they felt in those days before they knew that he had risen from the grave. What kind of hopeless, helpless, horrible feeling they must have had. But then when they knew he had risen, when they could accept the fact he had risen from the grave, it absolutely radically changed their life.

And then it was this same message of the resurrection they wanted to tell the whole world. Jesus said to them, when I go away I'll accepted the Holy Spirit. He'll be with you, in you and upon you and when he comes, I want you to go into all the world and preach the gospel to all the creation. Everything about it changed when they accepted the resurrection of Jesus Christ as a living reality in their life. Well, when you accept the fact that Jesus Christ is the son of God and that he died on the cross and atoned for your sins and that he rose from the grave, he is seated at the Father's right hand. When you're willing to accept that and you're willing to ask him to forgive you of your sins and you're willing to surrender your life to him, your life will be radically changed just as much as theirs. And the question is, on this easter Sunday, what about your relationship to Jesus Christ? Do you see him as a dead man years and years and years ago? Do you see him as a living Christ, a living Lord? Or maybe just some prophet? Or do you see him as your personal Savior and Lord?

If you see him that way, you see him the proper way. But if you only see him as a biblical character, or some historical figure or someone whom they say died and rose again but that's just sort of a fable then my friend, you are in desperate spiritual hopeless condition until you understand it, it isn't something comes and goes but Jesus' resurrection became, listen, one of the two foundational truths of the word of God. His vicarious, substitutionary, atoning death at calvary followed by his awesome resurrection of the two basic, listen, the two basic foundational principles of the entire word of God. It all rests upon that.

Think about that. Think about the times which they lived. And they lived in those times that was very difficult for them. Very trying time. Lots of poverty. Rome's rule. All the things going on. And how they responded. The wonderful thing is this. That Jesus did rise from the grave. And the scripture says that he went to be seated at his Father's right hand which meant that he sat down on the throne of Almighty God next to his Heavenly Father. And from that point, he has ruled and reigned and will for all eternity. So now somebody says, well, if he went to heaven, what has he been doing all this time? If you read the book of Hebrews seventh chapter ninth chapter especially in those chapters you'll find what he was doing. The scripture says he sat down at the right hand of God to intercede for you and for me. The scripture says in 1 John second chapter that he's now our advocate.

John wrote these things I write to you that you sin not. But if we sin, we have an advocate with the Father Jesus Christ the righteous. The living son of God. And oftentimes when people say I've sinned against God. I know I'm saved. I've sinned against him. What do I do now? We have an advocate. We have someone who stands in our stead. That is the crucified Savior upon whom the sins of the whole world were placed. That's why you and I can know our salvation isn't temporary based upon how good we are. But absolutely eternal. He's seated at the Father's right hand, making intercession for us, as he said. And he said he's preparing a place for us. In John 14, I'm going to prepare a place for you. If I go to prepare a place for you, I'm coming again to receive you to myself where I am there you will be also.

So if you think about all scripture says about Jesus in heaven, looks like he was rather busy and is busy. Jesus is certainly not sitting around doing anything if he's interceding for us, he is busy. One of the issues here about the fact that he's alive. He isn't just alive in heaven. If Jesus were just alive in heaven and I thought, well the only way for me to get to him is to look up there and hope somehow I'll make it, here's what he said. He said he's going away and I'll send the comforter, the Holy Spirit. He'll be with you, in you and upon you. He said I'm going to live my life in and through you by the presence of the Holy Spirit. And so, now you and I can rejoice because not only is he alive and not only is he seated at the Father's right hand but he by the presence of the Holy Spirit is living his life in me every single child of God has been sealed by the Spirit of God. We have him living on the inside of us. Every other religion can talk about a prophet. Who died. Only Christians can talk about the prophet who was the son of God who is still alive. And still active and still working in the hearts and lives of people everywhere.

So, the wonderful message for us on this easter is the fact Jesus Christ is alive. And not only that but that you and I have been forgiven of our sin. How would I know that? For example we confess our sins and he's faithful and just to forgive us our sins and we were pardoned the moment we asked us to come into our lives and save us of our sins. How do we know that for sure? Other prophets and other people believe all kinds of things. You say, how do you know that? That's what he said. Where is he? He died. Well you and I can say, look, every single thing that Jesus promised, every statement that he made, listen, every assurance that he's given us, you and I can rest absolutely assured on this fact, what he said was the absolute truth. How do I know that? He's still living.

The resurrection validated everything he said. Everything he did was validated. Everything he said was validated confirmed and affirmed by the fact he rose from the dead which was ultimately the acid test of who Jesus was. He could have said many things. But the fact, listen, that he conquered death. What is the acid test? Even though they didn't believe it. They had to finally believe it because then they could finally see him in living, physical form. Somebody said, well when he died, where did he go? Well here's where he went, the Bible says in Hebrews, for example, this is a very important passage of scripture. In Hebrews the scripture says, therefore, he is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through him since he always lives to make intercession for us. Another scripture says that for Christ did not enter a holy place made with hands a mere copy of the true one but into heaven itself now to appear in the presence of God for us.

When Jesus died, where did he go? He went into the presence of God. Remember who he was. John the Baptist says behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. Jesus Christ was God the Father's lamb that came into this world to atone for your sin and mine. When he died, he went into the Father's presence, listen, and the fact he was the acceptable Lamb of God, atoning for the sin of the whole world, God raised him from the dead, living absolute proof that when you and I confess and repent of our sins, they are forgiven. Not by our good works. Not by our promises. But by the fact, listen, that Jesus, the perfect son of God, Lamb of God died for our sins, atoned for our sins, and for God to make that unquestionably assured for all mankind up from the grave he arose, living forever and ever and ever. So when you and I come to deal with this whole issue of sin and we look at all the promises in the word of God, it all comes back to the resurrection.

How do I know it's true? How can I be sure it's true? Because he conquered death. No one has ever conquered death but Jesus Christ. One of these days, they'll be a whole generation of people who never experience death. When Jesus Christ comes for his body, all of us who are alive when he comes and are saved we will escape death. He says, in the twinkling of an eye, in the twinkling of an eye we shall be transformed into the body like the body of Christ caught up together with him in the clouds and forever be with the Lord. Sin was atoned for. Listen. Sin's penalty which was eternal death was canceled out. And the resurrection of Jesus Christ is living proof of that. If you do not believe in Jesus, whoever you believe in, remember this. You only believe the promise of a dead man. You only believe the promises and the predictions of a dead man.

How do you know it's true? How can he prove it's true. When I think about people who go to tombs and so forth and bow down and worship and all the things, do you know what? It's death. You go to Jerusalem and you go to the place Jesus probably was laid in that tomb, he's not there. I've been there. He's not there. And nobody, only Jesus rose from the grave. God's awesome testimony to us. You can trust this man because he is the son of God. We can trust him for forgiveness of our sins. Now, one of the wonderful things about his resurrection is this. You and I have the promise we're going to live forever. And if you think about, for example, this passage of scripture that so many people know. God so loved the world he gave his only begotten son that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have what? Everlasting life. Eternal life. How long is eternal life? Isn't that amazing how we hesitate when it comes to try to describe? What is eternal life? It's eternal. What's everlasting life? It's everlasting. It's forever life. And listen, it didn't just a forever life. But eternal life is a quality of love. It didn't just time. It's quality. It is a life like his life, which we'll see in a moment.

So when the scripture says that he rose from the grave, what did he do? He opened the door for all of us to understand. And somebody says, well, but I've always thought about death being the end of life. No. Do you know what the death is the end of? For all of us who are believers here's what death is the end of. Here's why you ought to join us. Look at this. Death is the end of all suffering. Are we all for that? Amen. All pain. Amen. All temptation. We could just go through the list. Think about all the things you and I deal with in life. We don't want to deal with them anymore. Here's what happens. When you and I die as believers that's the end of all that, suffering, pain, death, rejection, disappointments, that's the end of it. But it is the beginning of eternal life. It's beginning life as God intends for his children to live which all of us his saved children will live for all eternity.

When Jesus made the promise of giving us life after death and saying to us, he said, I'm going to prepare a place for you, if I go to prepare a place for you, I'm coming again to receive you. That is, listen, they might put your body in the finest, most expensive vault that's made. It can't keep you. Remember this when you go to a memorial service and there's a casket there no matter how much they paid for it or how inexpensive that might be there's nobody in there. That part is dead. But even that will be resurrected if that person died in Christ Jesus. Because you say, what will I look like? I'm coming to that. One thing I tell you, you'll look better than you do this morning because no matter how good you look, you'll never be able to match the looks of the child of God the body of Jesus.

For example, you remember what Jesus said to Mary and Martha? They were having a very difficult time. Because Jesus, he missed an appointment from their idea. In other words they sent him a message and said your friend Lazarus is sick unto death. Now, you would have thought that because Jesus loved him, he would have said to the disciples, let's get going. But he just waited around. They said look, wait a minute. He said we're going to wait until the right time. Now watch this carefully. Remember this. Your time and my time isn't always the right time. It's God's time that's always the right time. Sometimes he allows things in your life and mine we get right down to the bear limit, if you don't do, the hours have past by. We get down to minutes, God. Do you think you've surprised him? No. What happened? Jesus just let him die.

And so when he got there, Martha said to him, Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. Even now I know whatever you ask of God, God will give to it you. Jesus said to her, your brother will rise again. Martha said I know he'll rise in the resurrection the last day. Jesus said to her, listen to this, he says this to everyone of us. I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live even if he dies. Only Jesus can make that promise. Because see, here's what he meant. Listen. As believers, we may physically die, but we'll never ultimately die. We cannot die spiritually because we're his children and even the death we experience is like this. And Paul used this term. When he said, those who sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. You'll find people who say well what will happen to me when I die is, I guess I'll go to sleep and sleep until Jesus comes.

Listen if that would be true that means the apostle Paul could have been asleep 2000 years. That's not what he meant. Do you know why he used the word sleep. Paul wanted to describe to us what death means to a believer. Last night you went to sleep. You are in bed and talking to your husband or wife or children talking to each other, brothers and sisters, whatever it might be. And then all of a sudden it was morning. Did you say, I'm going to sleep now. And I'll see what will happen. No. You just finally were unconscious. And the next thing you knew it was a brand-new morning. That is death for believer. That's why Paul used the word sleep. Those who sleep in Jesus God will bring with him.

Now, when you think about what death means to us and what it means to those who are believers, he said, he who believes in me will live even if he dies. We may physically die but spiritually we'll never experience death as he's referring to here. Because we're his children. Now, when you think about it in your life and you think about what's going to happen to you one of these days, it's amazing people make big preparation for death like spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on something they're going cover up with dirt. I never have quite figured that out. They'll cover it up with dirt. And besides if you're a believer, you're not in there any way. What difference would it make if it's a pine box or covered with gold? I know you want to honor your parents and loved ones and so forth but we must not get caught up with this is the way it is. That's not where it is. The last breath you breathe according to the word of God is absent from the body and where? Present with the Lord. That means those of us who are believers don't need to fear death.

For simple reason, listen, do you remember what the Bible says about the rich man and the poor man and the rich man died. And in torment. The poor man died and the Bible says God's holy angels came and took him. So you say do you believe the angels come today and take home his children? Why not? Why no believe it? Is there anything? In other words if absent from the body, present with the Lord, that's a fast move. Wherever heaven is, it will be a fast move. You say how fast? Faster than you can blink your eye. He said he's coming in a moment. And that word is faster than you can blink. So we don't have to fear death unless you're an unbeliever. If you've never trusted Jesus Christ as your personal Savior, you have a reason to be afraid. But remember what he says, for example, in Ephesians 1. I want to encourage you to listen carefully to this passage because there's a lot of people who love God as much as anybody else do who believe the word of God and sincere about what they believe.

Listen to Ephesians 1 beginning in verse 11 of Ephesians 1. Also we have obtained an inheritance having been predestined according to his purpose who works all things according to the counsel of his will. We have an inheritance. Something God's given us. He said to the end we who were first to hope in Christ to the praise of his glory. Then he says, verse 13. In him our relationship to Christ, you also after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation, having also believed, you were sealed in him with the Holy Spirit of promise. Now watch this. The Holy Spirit of promise is the Holy Spirit who is given as a pledge of our inheritance with a view to the redemption of God's possession that's what we are. To the praise of his glory.

What is he saying? Simply this. When you trusted Jesus as your Savior the Holy Spirit sealed you as a child of God. Watch this carefully. He positioned you to be a part of God's inheritance. Now once you trust the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Savior, sealed, the Bible says, unto the day of redemption. When he calls you home. Sealed. You're part of his inheritance. I want to ask you this question. How can you ask the lore Jesus Christ to forgive you of your sins? How can you believe in his atoning death at calvary, he paid your sin debt in full and the Holy Spirit sealed you the moment you believed in him and made you part of his inheritance, how then can you lose your salvation when he sealed you, made you part of his inheritance? You say if I sinned again, I'll be lost. Where is that in the Bible? It's not in there. And I say this because there's so many people who are living, living in error. No being critical. I can understand it. I lived there for a while. Living in error to think I can be sealed, listen, we don't seal ourself. If it's something I did myself I might have a problem but sealed by the Holy Spirit of God. Person of the trinity. Sealed to the day of eternity. Takes us out of this life and takes us home to heaven. And makes us part of his inheritance. You cannot lose what God has given you in redemption. You not lose it.

Somebody said well, would that give me the privilege then? Could I go sin a little bit and take it easy? Try it. There's a lot in the Bible about being chastised. And God chastens us because he loves us enough not to let us get by with sin and ruin our reward and part of our inheritance. Now, that being true, we know we'll live forever. Well what kind of body are we going to have? If you turn to 1 Corinthians 15 I don't have time to get into it this morning, there's a lot of verses there about resurrection, we could just start right there. The important thing is, let's think about the kind of body Jesus had for a moment. When Jesus was here he had the normal body of a man. He was God and sinless. The only difference between him and anybody else walking around is he was the sinless son of God but he was normal man. Both deity and human.

So when he died on the cross, think about this. He had been beaten and beaten horribly. He had a crown of thorn shoved down on his brow and been through grief and heartache in Gethsemane with a broken heart. A man of grief and sorrows. And so when they saw him, that's the kind of shape he was in. Then when he was resurrected, is it any wonder, for example, Mary and those women, those who saw him couldn't quite recognize him. Do you know why? All the sorrow, all the grief, all the blood, all the beating, all the crucifixion was gone. And now having resurrected, he had a brand-new body. What kind of body was it? It was a body that was suited for his life in those 40 days that he was going to be on earth following his resurrection. And so he looked different. One of the reasons they didn't recognize him. Number one, they didn't expect him.

So he was a surprise. Secondly, his very body was different. Now, different in appearance. For example, if you look in Philippians chapter three for a moment. A wonderful thing about the word of God is, I can't ever get enough of it. Some people don't want any of it. I feel sorry for them. They don't know what they're missing. The interesting thing is, in any subject you bring up, God gives us just enough what? To give us assurance and confidence. But he doesn't satisfy all our curiosities so what happens? We want to learn more and more and more. In this third chapter of Philippians look here for a moment. The scripture says beginning in verse 20. Our citizenship is in heaven we eagerly wait for our Savior Jesus Christ. Who will transform the body of our humble state like it is now into conformity, like, conformity with the body of his glory having been resurrected by the exertion or expression of his power that he has to subdue all things to himself.

Now, what kind of body did he have? He was resurrected with a body. First of all, that could be seen tangible. Felt of him. Thomas put his hand there. Saw the scars in his hands. He ate fish. He ate bread. Listen. It was a human body glorified. Not human like ours now. But human as a human being. Glorified. And a body that was not all that it was going to be when he got to heaven. But one people could see, touch and feel. That's the body he had. But I'm sure he was handsome, absolutely. If there's hope for any of us, we'll all be handsome and beautiful. Let me ask you a question, you laugh at it but think about this. If God is absolutely pure and holy and righteous and perfect in everything he does, do you think he'll make us with all of our scars and all of our blemishes and all the things we would like to get rid of in life? Is that what heaven will be like? Never. It says when we see him, we'll be like him.

What does that mean? Our body will be like his glorified body when you get to heaven. Will be like his body. Well you say, I have a long ways to go. You won't have to worry about it. You'll not have a diet. You'll not have to take anymore vitamins and minerals and all the things we work at trying stay healthy. We'll have a body absolutely perfect. Turns to romans 8 for a moment. Romans 8 Paul describes something that makes all this so very important and it all fits. Look at this for a moment. Romans 8. Notice if you will beginning in verse 18. He says, for I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us. He said look you haven't seen anything yet. Now watch this next passage. For the creation was subjected to futility not willingly but because of him who subjected it. In hope that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God.

Now watch this. For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now. And not only this, also ourselves having the first fruit of the Spirit even ourselves grown within ourselves waiting eagerly as adoption of sons of our body. Here's what he's saying. He's saying, this earth of ours, he says, it groans. And you and I don't have to wonder about that. Look at tsunamis. Earthquakes. Tidal waves, floods, hurricanes all the things that happen. And seemingly in had time of our lives. The things going on around us. He said the body, he says, the creation is groaning. What is he referring to? Simply this. Because when he comes and he creates, he absolutely purifies this earth. And creates it afresh and new as if it were the Garden of Eden as far as it's purity and beauty and concern.

He said this entire earth will be absolutely transformed. Because heaven for us will not only be the heavenly city but this earth. In other words, God doesn't lose anything. This earth will be transformed into this, listen, to the absolute awesome beauty only God could create. Now our bodies, our glorified bodies will be the kind of body that is perfectly fitted for this new purified creation. We'll have a body that perfectly fits where we're going to live. So, that means that we don't have to be concerned about well what about this? What about our bodies? How will we look? All these things. The scripture makes it very clear that God has, he's taken care of all of that. And when you and I come to that point in our life where we say, all right, Lord, here I am.

So now what happens? We're in his presence. In these glorified bodies. Perfectly suited for this new creation that he's provided for all of us. So we don't have to worry about it. Slavery of creation. Caught up in all these things that happen. God just sort of let it go. Here's what we face today. So our bodies will be perfect. And we'll all look the best God can take us book. Perfectly suited. When we think about heaven being our home and Jesus said I'm going to prepare a place for you. So that means heaven is going to be also wherever he's preparing it for us now. And it's also going to be this transformed earth that he speaks of. He told them he was coming to get them. And so Jesus didn't just disappear, remember?

So look if you will in acts one for a moment and you recall he said to them. I'm going to send you someone else. That is the Holy Spirit. He'll be in you, with you, upon you. And he's the one that enables us to understand the word of God. He's the one that equips us with spiritual gifts to do what he wants us to do and he enables us to achieve and accomplish in life. Here's what he said. When you come to the book of acts first chapter and Jesus has just told his disciples what would happen, the scripture says that he said to them in verse seven, he said to them, it is not for you to know the times and the seasons which the Father picks by his own authority. They were asking when all these things would happen. But you have received power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you and you shall be my witnesses both in Jerusalem and Samaria and to the remotest parts of the earth. One of the last things he said before he left this earth, he gave them a commission.

Here's the way I want you to spend the rest of your life. I want you to share the truth of my atoning crucifixion and my resurrection to the world of your day. And I want it to go on and on until it reaches the uttermost parts of the earth. When he finished saying that the scripture says, after he said these things, he was lifted up. While they were looking on, a cloud received him out of their sight and as they were gazing intently into the sky while he was going, behold two men in white clothing stood by them. They also said men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into the sky. This Jesus who has been taken up from you in the heaven will come in just a same way as you have watched him go into heaven. So somebody says, well now, that being true what can we expect. Here's what he said. You see how he left? That's the way he's coming back. If for example Jesus would come back today. How would he come back? The way he left. Would he be recognized? Absolutely.

When you think about the promises he's made, clear explanation in the word of God about what's going to happen and how it's going happen. And when we get to heaven what heaven will be like. We can't possibly imagine what it will be like. He talks in the last chapter of the book of revelation here's what he said. Here's one thing you and I can expect and anticipate when we get to heaven. That is, we are going to do certain things. He says, beginning in verse three of the 22nd chapter they'll be no longer any curse there. For throne of God and the lamb will be in it. And his bond servants will serve him. Listen, people say what will we do when we get o heaven? Float around like angels? No. He said first of all, we'll serve God. He said we'll see his face. And he says, and his name will be on our foreheads. And he said, we'll reign with him forever. All of those things say to me, that we're going have the kind of body that is perfectly suited for heaven. We're going to be people who are active.

Listen. We're going to be sealed as his children, his name on our forehead. Heaven will be the perfection of Almighty God. We are going to be serving him, loving him, worshiping him, praising him. Listen. We are going to be active in the kingdom of God. And we're to love each other. Husbands are to love their wives as Christ loves the church and all the wonderful things about love and relationships. When we get to heaven, are we know our loved ones? Yes. He said, we'll know even as we are known. All of us have some loved ones likely that are there. We want to see Jesus first. We want to see our mothers and fathers next, if possible. We don't know how that will be. But one thing for certain, we're going to know each other. Remember what Jesus' body was like. Jesus' body was like a human body in all of its perfection with the capacity to do all that he as sovereign God can do. We will have bodies that are recognizable and we can have relationships. The depth of that relationship, I don't know.

Some people say they'll not be given in marriage, I understand that. Well does that mean they'll be no relationship at all? I can't answer that question. Do you know why? Here's the reason why. Because we don't know all the power God has to do what he chooses to do. We can only limit to it what I see, here's a person, here's a person. Married or not married. Relationships, friendships. Don't underestimate the awesome power and love of Almighty God. Will we know each other? Yes. Recognize each other? Yes, we will. Love one another? Absolutely. How deep the relationship will be, only God knows that. Now watch this. The one ho brought all this book together is the son of God. He conquered death. That's all the proof that I need that I can trust my whole eternity to one who conquered death and who kept every single promise he made.

So therefore, because you and I are his children, the Bible says he's gifted us all. Given us gifts and talents and abilities and all the rest, he has a work for us to do. Every single one of us. A purpose and plan for our life. I ask you this simple question. Until he comes for you, either in death or he comes in the sky, what are you going to be doing? He didn't create you to sit around and do nothing. He didn't create you just to satisfy yourself. He created every single one of us to serve him in some fashion. It's not for anybody else to tell you how to serve God. I may try to motivate you the best I know how. To serve him. To be busy working in the Lord's work in some fashion, some way small or great in your eyes. But he gave us all tasks and has a will and purpose and plan for our life. And he desires that you and I live out our life, being fruitful. And having the kind of life for which there is evident fruit. Loving one another. Serving one another. Which we'll do in heaven. Make our lives count for the kingdom of God.

Otherwise, how are you going live your life? Since he's the source of every heartbeat we have, he's the source of every day we live. He's the source of every talent, skill and ability. And he's the source of our eternal home. Don't you think it would be a wise idea for you to accept the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Savior? Surrender your life to him. And let him through the power of the Holy Spirit within you, enable you to live out your life so when you come to that point to die you have no fears. You know that you may not have been perfect in life. No one is. Know that you failed many times. We all have. But you've been sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise.

You are already a part of God's awesome inheritance. You are heaven bound. And you don't want to go empty handed but a life lived out as best you know how in a way that brings him honor and glory. And live it out until the moment when one day somewhere sometime, morning, noon or night, when he calls your name, there's an old gospel hymn that goes something like this. When he calls me, I will answer. When he calls me, I will answer. I'll be somewhere working for my Lord. Somewhere somehow that's the way you and I ought to come to the end of our life. Being ready to meet our master and bring him glory and live for him and with him for all eternity. That's the promise of every child of God and my plea to you today is simply this. Don't miss it. Suppose I do. You don't even want me to describe what happens to those who miss that awesome opportunity.

Father, how grateful we are for your awesome love for us, we don't have to work and plead and hope and beg for you to forgive us of our sins or to keep us saved. You've already settled all that. We come this morning to worship you. And adore you. And praise you. And thank you and commit ourselves afresh and new to you. That every day of our life will count in some fashion, in some way, for somebody. For the kingdom of God. And we pray this in Jesus' name. Amen.

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