Let the Church Arise!  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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The care for Jesus' body parallels the church.

Have you ever been to a funeral and heard the minister say, “Thank you all for being here as we celebrate the life of brother _____________ or sister _______________.”
Depending on what you believe, this ordinary statement will garner different emotions.
The message of Easter tells the world that Jesus Christ resurrected so that all believers may have life.
Our understanding of death has the ability to change whenever we possess proper understanding of Easter.
READ John 19:38-42
Jesus had just died and is being prepared for burial.

“A New Tomb”

It was customary in Rome for executed criminals not to be buried and left out to be eaten by vultures.
Joseph of Arimethea - Prominent member of Sanhedrin. Secret disciple of Jesus.
To confess Jesus openly risked being thrown out of the synagogue.
Other gospels describe Joseph as wealthy, honorable, and a counsellor.
He recieved permission to receive the body of Jesus.
Only John’s gospel says that Joseph had assistance.
Nicodemus was also a member of the sanhedrin.
“myrrh and aloes” Myrrh from Arabia and Aloe from India. $$$
“A new tomb” shows the honor placed on the body of Jesus.
Counteracts the humiliation of His death.
Only wealthy people had tombs, and only the wealthiest had new tombs.
Can you imagine how it must have been for the people to see the dead body of Jesus? (The disciples could not have believed Him earlier)
In order for Jesus to rise eternally, He had to be completely dead.
The example of Joseph and Nicodemus tells us that Jesus even brought an impact to the life of the people viewed as His “enemy”.
His death death brought out their boldness.
Our life on this earth ought to be viewed as a New Tomb.
We are here but we are not here long.
People are not to get comfortable with their short time on earth.
READ Romans 6:3-7
We enter tombs to die from sin so that we can join Jesus in life.
READ Acts 7:54-60

“A Savior that Stands”.

Stephen - “Crown” 1st Christian martyr
Deacon who helped bring peace to the church.
He was mighty in the scriptures.
His message accused the Jewish leaders of rejecting God’s plan in the same way their forefathers had.
The reaction of the hearers toward Stephen was of pure rage & anger.
Stephen’s message had a great affect on the hearers. Total rejection.
Stephen experienced a Heavenly vision.
The glory that hides God from view and Jesus standing at the right hand of god.
The Heavens are open!
Stephen saw Jesus in His role as the son of man; he saw Him as the one who suffered and was vindicated by God.
Same pattern as Christian martyrs.
“Standing” - Jesus is standing to advocate and plead Stephen’s cause before God and to welcome him into God’s presence.
The dying Stephen is welcomed into the presence of Jesus; the implication is that as Jesus was raised from the dead, so too His followers will be.
Jesus watched with eager interest with which He watched from the skies the scene in that council chamber.
To speak this way was blasphemy to Jewish ears.
They didn’t want to hear it anymore. No formal trial. Seized, drug out town and killed.
“Miss Jean Louise, stand up. Your Father in passing by.” To Kill a Mockingbird.
What are Christian’s facing today?
Death is the beginning.
We won’t overcome unless we face death.
Death brings life.
READ Matthew 16:24-25
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