Matthew 28:5-7 - But the angel said to the women, "Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here, for He has risen, as He said. Come, see the place where He lay. Then go quickly and tell His disciples that He has risen from the dead, and behold, He is going before you to Galilee; there you will see Him. See, I have told you."
Jesus rose from the dead. Sadly, a lot of people don't believe that. Many of them want proof.
Shall we try and give proof to them? Do you think it would help if I showed them Someone who had actually risen from the dead? Would they believe then? Understand, I'm not talking about one of those ER episodes where somebody's heart stops for a few seconds. I'm talking about somebody who was really, truly dead. Would that convince them?
Look, suppose you had an uncle Bob. Suppose, before he died, uncle Bob said he was going to come back and visit you. Would you believe him? Of course, you wouldn't. You know when a person is dead, he's dead. You might humor uncle Bob, but you wouldn't believe him. When uncle Bob died you wouldn't keep looking for him. You know dead people stay dead.
Now, suppose, just suppose, three days after his funeral, uncle Bob did come and pay you a visit. Would that change your opinion? Of course, it wouldn't.
You would think uncle Bob's visit was a hallucination, a dream, an over-active imagination. You're too smart to get suckered by a dream, aren't you? But what if uncle Bob showed you he was real.
Suppose uncle Bob got close enough so you could feel his breath. Suppose he asked for something to eat and ate it. Suppose he said, "Here, touch me, here," and you did. Would you believe then? I bet you wouldn't. Dreams can be very real. You'd probably think, now, I'm the one who has lost it. It's a logical conclusion.
But what if the rest of the family had also seen uncle Bob, had heard the same things you did, at the same time. Would you stay skeptical about uncle Bob's resurrection? It would be hard, wouldn't it? And suppose uncle Bob showed up again, and again, and again, and again. You would be left with two choices: you were crazy, or uncle Bob had kept his promise to come back from the dead. If you're like most, you'd go with the second of the two choices. You'd believe.
When somebody came up and said things like "That wasn't really uncle Bob," you'd say, "Yes, it was." And if somebody said, "Uncle Bob didn't really die," you'd say, "He had a great big hole in his heart. He was dead." And all of your answers would say, uncle Bob's appearance wasn't opinion; it was reality. It was true.
That, my friends, is what I'm saying about Jesus. Jesus, God's Son, is alive. He was dead. He was crucified. He was stabbed through the heart. He was buried, but today He is alive. He is really, physically, touchably alive.
It's not opinion. You can believe it is the truth because it is.
I don't much care about the other things you doubt and deny, but I do care about this. Your eternity rests upon whether you believe Jesus is your Savior, on whether Jesus is your Redeemer, on whether you know that Jesus' truth is God's truth and God's truth is salvation.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, the world demands proof of the resurrection. May their hearts be opened when You give it to them. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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