Good News From A Graveyard

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Luke 24:1-9

INTRODUCTION: We all love good news! It might be that someone we love is coming to visit. It might be that something we thought was forever lost is now found. It might be that a prayer has been answered for the sick. It might be that a loved one has come to know Jesus Christ. We all love good news. The Proverb says, Proverbs 15:30 The light of the eyes rejoiceth the heart: and a good report maketh the bones fat.  We are also told that, Proverbs 25:25 As cold waters to a thirsty soul, so is good news from a far country. The disciples needed their tear dimmed eyes brightened. They needed cold water for their weary souls. We know the account. Jesus died. With Him seemed to perish the disciples’ hopes, dreams, plans, and confidence. They went into hiding for fear of the Jews. But then, having gone to the tomb, the women were greeted with the headline of the centuries: Luke 24:6 He is not here, but is risen: remember how he spake unto you when he was yet in Galilee, Now, we're talking Good News! Good News from a graveyard! But what story goes with the headline? What is the essence of this Good News?


A.        Jesus was dead.

1.      The disciples understood that.

2.      Experts checked that.

3.      The Roman executioners knew when a body was lifeless.

4.      He was placed in a tomb, the tomb was sealed and a guard set.

5.      It seemed that death had stolen the victory!

B.        But Satan's schemes and man's devices could not hold Him in the grave.

1.      The devil could not defeat Him.

2.      Death could not hold Him.

3.      The Tomb could not contain Him.

4.      Death met its match!

C.        Listen to the commentary on this great truth:

Acts 2:24 Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it.

Acts 13:34 And as concerning that he raised him up from the dead, now no more to return to corruption, he said on this wise, I will give you the sure mercies of David.

D.        Let me illustrate: I never think about the resurrection without likening it to a wrestling match between a greatly superior and an unquestionably inferior strength.

1.      Example of letting someone smaller win at wrestling for a while

a)      Let Pierce win at arm wrestling

2.      Just so, Jesus willingly allowed His enemies to do their utmost - for a period of 3 days and nights! Then shrugging death off like a dirty shirt, He arose.

E.        The good news from the graveyard is that death has been denied its deadliness!


A.        When Jesus died, the disciples became a frightened, disoriented lot.

Matthew 28:5-6 And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified.  He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.

John 19:38 And after this Joseph of Arimathaea, being a disciple of Jesus, but secretly for fear of the Jews, besought Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus: and Pilate gave him leave. He came therefore, and took the body of Jesus.

John 20:19 Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you.

B.        The disciples were filled with fear! But Jesus stood in their midst.

1.      He knew where they were hiding out and sought them.

2.      He knew what they needed to hear and spoke peace.

C.        What do you fear? Oh, you're one of the macho, fearless ones who could grab a bone out of a pit bull's mouth? Well, just between you and yourself, what do you fear?

1.      Is it death? He's conquered it.

Hebrews 2:14-15 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.

2.      Is it the Unknown?

3.      The Future?

4.      The "What-if's?"

5.      God has the answer:

Philippians 4:6-7 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

6.      Is it standing before Almighty God in judgment? He has taken our judgment and offers us justification:

John 5:24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.

A small child went with his father to see Grandma, who lived about three miles from their home. They stayed longer than they planned and night overtook them. Between home and grandmother's was a swamp and that night the frogs croaking and crickets chirping, together with the darkness and shadows of the trees, frightened the boy. He asked his father "Will something catch us?" Father assured him that there was no danger. Soon the boy asked the same question again and received the same answer. But his father saw he was frightened and he took him by the hand and said: "1 will not allow anything to harm you." And all his fears passed away and he was ready to face the world; for his father had him by the hand. How like our Lord Jesus who takes us by the hand when we are fearful. We can say with David, Psalm. 23:4 "Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for Thou art with me; Thy rod and Thy staff they comfort me." The poet also says: "There are days so dark that I seek in vain For the face of my Friend Divine. Tho' the darkness hide, He is there to guide By the touch of His hand on mine."

D.        The good news from the graveyard is: "Fear not! Take courage! Jesus Who lives has stripped fear of its fearfulness!"


A.        Despair, gloom, misery were the order of the day - until they realized that Jesus was alive and then hope blossomed eternal!

B.        The Resurrection gives hope because:

1.      It answers the timeless question posed by Job,

Job 14:14 If a man die, shall he live again?

2.      Job answered his own query,

Job 19:25-27  For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God: Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed within me.

3.      It calms those who, standing by the grave of a loved one, question, "Will we meet again?" In answer to that, Paul wrote,

2 Corinthians 4:13-14 We having the same spirit of faith, according as it is written, I believed, and therefore have I spoken; we also believe, and therefore speak; Knowing that he which raised up the Lord Jesus shall raise up us also by Jesus, and shall present us with you.

C.        If death were the final word, Paul's words would be an apt description of our state:

1 Corinthians 15:19 If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.

D.        But there is hope:

1.      Hope of forgiveness of sin and reconciliation to God

2.      Hope of meaning and purpose in this world.

3.      Hope of resurrection to eternal life.

4.      Hope of reunion with loved ones gone on in Christ.

5.      Hope of seeing Jesus Christ Himself in all His Glory.

6.      Hope of living in a new world devoid of all the trauma and trouble of this world.

The southernmost point of Africa is a point which experiences tremendous storms. For many years no one even knew what lay beyond that cape, for no ship attempting to round that point had ever returned to tell the tale. That place was known as the "Cape of Storms," and for good reason. But then a Portuguese explorer in the sixteenth century, Vasco De Gama, successfully sailed around that very point and found beyond the wild raging storms, a great calm sea, and beyond that, the shores of India. The name of that cape was changed from the "Cape of Storms" to the "Cape of Good Hope." Until Jesus Christ rose from the dead, death had been the "Cape of Storms" on which all hopes of life beyond had been wrecked. No one knew what lay beyond that point until, on Easter morning; those ancient visions of Isaiah became the victory of Jesus over our last great enemy. Suddenly, like those ancient explorers, we can see beyond human death to the hope of heaven and eternal life with the Father. More than that, we dare to believe that we shall experience in our own human lives exactly what the Son of God experienced in his, for the risen Christ says to us, "Because I live, you shall live also." This is the heart of the Easter faith.

CONCLUSION: The good news from the graveyard is that death has met its match, that fear has been vanquished and that despair has been denuded of its hopelessness!

Philips Brooks put it this way:

"Tomb, thou shalt not hold Him longer;

Death is strong, but Life is stronger;

Stronger than the dark, the light;

Stronger than the wrong, the right;

Faith and Hope triumphant say,

Christ will rise on Easter Day."

That's the good news. And it didn't come from CNN or FOX, it didn't come from Washington D.C., it didn't come from the Shreveport Times.

It came from a graveyard where an angel spoke to a crushed heart and said, "He is not here, but He has risen." Luke 24:6.  He was not there, but He is here this morning because He has risen.  He is able to save you today because He is risen and ever lives to intercede with the Father on your behalf. He is able to give you a new life today because He is risen and He lives.  The Living Jesus calls you to Himself, to life, to forgiveness and to peace.  Will you hear Him calling, and will you come?

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