TD Jakes - God Has Moved On
"But on the first day of the week, verse 1, "At early dawn, they came unto the tomb bringing the spices which they had prepared, and they found the stone rolled away from the tomb. They entered in and found not the body of the Lord Jesus. And it came to pass that while they were perplexed thereabout, behold, two men stood by them in dazzling apparel. And as they were affrighted and bowed down their faces to the earth, they said unto them, 'Why seek ye the living amongst the dead? He is not here, but is risen.
Remember how he spake unto you when he was yet in Galilee, saying that the Son of Man must be delivered up into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again?' And they remembered his words and returned from the tomb and told all these things to the eleven and to all the rest". Now, this tells me who they is. "They were Mary Magdalene, and Joanna, and Mary the mother of James. And the other women with them told these things unto the apostles. And these words appeared in their sight as idle talk, and they believed them not. But Peter arose and ran unto the tomb," we talked about that, "And stooping looking in, he seeth the linen cloths by themselves, and he departed to his home wondering at that which was to come to pass". Somebody say, "Amen".
Now let's see, I'm gonna go back here to the angel's question. Heaven has asked earth a question. "Why seek ye the living amongst the dead"? Why are you looking for something living in a dead place? My subject this morning is "God Has Moved On". God has moved on. Thomas wasn't sure he even believed anymore and old Peter had gone to cussin'. Judas had hung himself and there were all kind of rumors out there as to why. And the rest of the apostles had locked themselves up behind closed doors afraid for their life. They're killing Christians, they're killing Jesus followers.
The heat was on so strong that somebody asked Peter, "Do you know him"? Peter said, "Not me". I mean, water-walking Peter up under enough pressure has denied the Lord and everything is shut down in the city. Of course it's shut down because it is the Sabbath, but now the Sabbath has passed and the morning has come, and it is the eighth day, and early in the morning before people started their daily task and went about their business, and started their affairs, and gathered the eggs, and checked the henhouse. And went down to draw water from the well early in the morning, about the break of day, three women make their journey down to the tomb, and they are Mary Magdalene, and Joanna, and Mary the mother of James.
These three women we have seen before. They are three women with massive testimonies. Mary Magdalene, you remember her story. She's from Magdala. Magdala was the island where the prostitutes hung out, and the reason they called her Mary Magdalene is to always remind you of where she came from. Mary Magdalene was the woman that was oppressed with demonic influence so grievous that only Jesus could deliver her from the devils she had, devils so intense and so comprehensive that it took Jesus to set her free.
And once he did, what Jethro couldn't do, and what Freddie couldn't do, and what Jimmy couldn't do, and what Willy couldn't do, and what Nelly, and Sally, and Suzie couldn't do, once he did, Mary Magdalene wasn't somebody who got saved and disappeared, or got delivered and walked away, no, no, no, no, no, she was not one of those people who called on God till she got out of trouble and then got out of trouble and went on about her business. Once he set her free, she started following Jesus.
And then there was Joanna. Joanna's husband was a nobleman who served up under Herod. And the reason she is in the crowd, most theologians agree that is was their son that was at the point of death that Jesus stepped in and healed and delivered in the Gospel of St. John. How many mamas do we have in the house? There's something about your child that when your child is at the point of death, you can't fully understand this unless you have had a child. There's a different kind of love, there's a different kind of intensity, there's a different kind of cry when it's your child.
Oh yes, oh yes, it's a cry. You know, children get to playin' in the backyard and they cry. Oh, they whimper about something and you keep on washing dishes, but there is a cry that'll make you drop the plate. When your child is in trouble, your heart is broken. Jesus had delivered her child and she didn't just say, "Thank you," she started following Jesus in the way. And then, there's Mary the mother of James who not only has given her service, but her son. She has also give him, and his life has become one of the comrades of faith in the corridors of teaching and preaching, not to be confused with James in the Scriptures. This is the lesser James, the smaller James. He doesn't have the impact nor intensity of the one in the book, but her son has followed Jesus. And when somebody changes your child's life, when they turn around your child, you will follow Jesus.
These three women followed Jesus, each with their own motivation. The only thing that was common about them was gratitude. You know, when you have grateful people, you don't have to teach on worship. When you have grateful people, you don't even have to have great singers. We got great singers, and great musicians, and great instruments, and great lights, and padded pews, and all of that, but when you got grateful people, they can sit on cinder blocks and praise him with washboards, because when they think about what God did for them, there's a praise and an eruption that breaks out in their soul.
I mean, that he saved you, that he delivered you, that he set you free, and then there's some personal things. Anybody got some personal things that God did for you that when you praise him, you keep thinkin' about that thing that you could not do for yourself? And had he not done it, this wouldn't of happened, that wouldn't of happened, and this wouldn't of happened, and that.
Could it be possible that you're looking for the right thing in the wrong place? He didn't blame 'em for lookin', he blamed 'em for lookin' too low. "Why seek ye the living amongst the dead"? And you keep going to where you last saw him, but God has moved on. The problem with the church today is that we keep going back to where he was. We go to where he used to be, and talk about what he used to do, and talk about how he used to bless, and we keep going to the spot where we last saw him, trying to find him, but he is not there, he is risen. Y'all don't hear what I'm saying. Does anybody hear what I'm saying? He is not there, he has risen, he has moved on.
Ooh, what did you say? "Therefore, let us leave the principles of the doctrine, of laying on of hands, and of repentance, and baptism, and dead works. Let us move on unto perfection. Let us not stay around the tomb where we argue about doctrines and days of worship," and what you've got on, and what you're wearing, who sits on the right, and who sits on the left, because I came to tell you God has moved on. Let us move away from black churches, and white churches, and Baptist churches, and Methodist churches, because God, God has moved on. I go sometimes to places where people are doing stuff from 50 years, 100 years ago, and God has moved on, and they don't even know it. They don't even know that God has moved on. They worship at the shrine of traditionalism, and the Bible said the traditions of men make the Word of God of no effect.
Why are these angels here? They can't be here guarding the body because now the body is gone. Why have the angels not left? They hung around so that you would not misunderstand what you see. This is not a robbery, don't call the police. Be not afraid, vandals have not rolled this stone away, and the Lord sent me here to tell you you're going through some strange times, but don't be afraid. This is not a robbery, this is not the devil, this is not the enemy, God has ordered a shift in your life. He is not where he used to be, he has moved to the next level. The Lord brought you here so I could tell you God has moved on.
Can I pull a few witnesses? Samson said, "I can testify". I said, "Samson, you can't testify because you wasn't even alive then". He said, "Yeah, but I can still testify," he said, "Because I lay my head in Delilah's lap and she cut the locks out of my hair, and I stood up and I shook myself, and never even knew that God had moved on". A whole lot of shakin' doesn't mean a whole lot of power. I see a lot of people shakin' that don't have no power. Samson shook himself and never even knew that God had moved on. He's still operating in an old dimension, and God had moved on.
"Why seek ye the living amongst the dead"? He says why do you keep going back to the place of your pain while you shout about power? Why do you keep rehearsing in your mind the thing that takes your strength while you plan your future? You can't plan your future if you're gonna hang around the tomb. "Why seek ye the living amongst the dead"? Until you make up your mind, you know what I'm gonna do? "Forget those things which are behind me and reach to those things which are before me. I press toward the mark of the prize".
Why you pressin', Jakes? I'm pressin' because God has moved on. I need your help. Touch ten people and tell 'em, "Something's about to happen". Something's about to happen in your life. Something's about to happen in your ministry. Something's about to happen in your marriage. Something's about to happen in your family. Something's about to happen on your business. Something's about to happen in your job. Something's about to happen in your career. Something's about to happen in your spirit. Something's about to happen in your belly. Something's about to happen in your soul. Something is about to happen. Something is about to happen!
But it cannot happen if you keep going back to the tomb. Because what God is about to do in your life will not be done in a dead place, surrounded by dead-thinking people, with dead ideas, and dead creativity. The Lord sent me here to tell you he's gonna do a new thing in you, and the former things are passed away, and you keep trying to fix that which was. But God said stop trying to fix it, he has moved... there you are, Joanna, trying to aromatize a stinky place, puttin' all of your energies in trying to freshen up something is decomposing, puttin' all of your passion, your power, and your finances into the former rather than the later.
God said you don't need to put any more resources in that which was, because God has moved on. He's operating on another level. Touch somebody and tell 'em, "He is risen". That means that if he has risen, you have got to rise. Oh my God, I'm about to get happy in here right now. Tell your neighbor, "I'm gettin' up". I've been on this level too long. I've been crouched down too long. I've been lookin' in dark places too long. I've been lookin' in holes and dungeons too long, I am getting up.
The writer says, "If ye then be risen with Christ, seek that which is above". You're gonna have to make up in your mind either you're gonna walk by faith or you're not. Either you're gonna believe God or you're not. Either you're gonna trust him or you're not. No need of you keep on prayin' if you're gonna keep on meddlin'. No need to you keep talkin' to God if you gonna keep talkin' to everybody else. If you're gonna leave it with God, leave it with God. Who am I preaching to? Shout, "Yes," somebody. Lord, let your glory take over this place, pressed down, shaken together, runnin' over. For the next three minutes, give God praise!
The angel asked the woman, "Why are you looking for something living in a dead place"? They did not know that God had moved Christ beyond his sacrifice to his resurrection. God wants to reveal the same thing in your life. In his Word, he says I am about to do something new and it has already begun. Stop trying to fix what was. Don't continue to go back to where God used to be, God has moved on. You will never know the great things he has ordained for your life, family, and career if you continue to go back to the graveyard of your pain, and rejection, and who hurt you, and who betrayed you. Get out of the grave and leave the tombstones alone. You should be looking up, because Christ is risen, and the Bible says you are seated with him in heavenly places.