31st March 2024

Raised for our Justification

Passage: Philippians 3:10, Romans 1:3, 4:25, Acts 17
Service Type:

Automatically Generated Transcript

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On the Friday morning, we were looking at the death of Christ, and this morning, the emphasis we have from the Bible is on Jesus Resurrection. There is a third thing that's usually talked about at Easter time, and that is going to happen tonight, where we're looking at Jesus ascension, when He went back to Heaven. So that meeting is at five o'clock, if you wanted to come. There is a Bible verse that we want you to look at up on the screen where the Apostle Paul is speaking about his aim in life as a Christian. And so we're trying to learn from him how this business of the resurrection fits in, applies to, empowers our Christian living. And Paul said that I may know him. Interesting, he leads in with the fact that being a Christian isn't just the things that you do.

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It's not just the knowledge that you have. It is a matter of experiencing, of knowing, of coming into relationship with the person of the Lord Jesus Christ, that I may know him. But then he continues and says in the power of his resurrection. Confession So that brings to the bear the fact that there is something that occurred to Jesus in the final third day when he rose from the tomb. It made a big difference to his experience and Jesus' experience, but also to what it is to be a Christian and to have a Christian experience. What is it like the Apostle Paul to know the power of His Resurrection? That's what this morning I'm talking about.

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He goes on to say, he may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death. So there is more, but for this morning we're talking about the fact that Jesus as he rose from the grave had some distinct difference in him then that we also can experience in our coming to know him. Now, to this I've got sort of five steps that I'm going through and you can follow them if you can but I've got a Bible verse for each one to bring it to light for us and so the first of these is in Romans in chapter 1 and here the Apostle Paul is introducing to the Christians at Rome about what it's all about and you'll find that as you go through the book of Romans he keeps talking about the gospel. The gospel is just a central message of Christianity

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humanity, about Jesus and what has been done, and how we can come and make peace with God. But he says here in Romans 1 and verse 3 that this message is concerning his Son. So immediately we recognize who's being talking about is the 2nd person from the Trinity, is God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. And Jesus is a Son. Do you know something? But a lot of people who go to church have some degree of religious training, do not know is that Jesus is a son in more ways than one. There's another verse, I won't put it up on the screen.

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It's quoting God saying, This day, I have begotten him. So the son came to be a son more than what he already was as a son. the eternal Son of God who was there in the beginning of creation, the got a place. He is the one the Bible says in John chapter 1, 21 Who made you and me and He was there when you came through to exist. 22 Who is this Son? He himself came into His own creation and became Son by taking on humanity. 22 And in his humanity he has been given the name Jesus. And the name Jesus is His name and His humanity is His name.

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Which name, by the way, he never leaves, and he doesn't stop being human. He is taking his humanity. This God man now has gone to heaven. That what tonight we'll be talking about it at the ascension of Christ. And how the name that was given in his humanity which is Jesus was accredited with all the power of heaven. So at the Name of Jesus, the Bible says every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. So, the person is about whom we talk this morning is not just God but is God coming

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in the flesh and taking on humanity to be a human being amongst us though still being God. So, the apostle Paul in writing his gospel of course has to speak about the Son who was descended from David according to the flesh, that means in his humanity, he's a descendant from who was King David. was declared to be Son of God in power according to the Spirit of holiness by His resurrection from the dead. Now the first thing to learn this morning, this is number one, see if you can see that I remember the whole five. Number one is that Jesus' resurrection declares him to be the Son of God in power. I actually thought for a heading of this message I could talk about the power of the

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resurrection. And I'm having to start with the power the resurrection in Jesus but moving on to the power of the resurrection of Jesus in us. But here it says that he was declared to be in our English translation. Now there's something that you learn when you look up the Greek word which is the word horizo. We get our word horizon. Back in the days of the sailing ships when Britain ruled the waves so I have some British ancestry to boast about. When Britain ruled the waves and these sailing ships were dominant around all the oceans and in the trading that happened then in that period of time if they were worried about an enemy warship being just below the horizon they'd have someone up a mast, someone with a telescope somewhere watching to see but they couldn't know For sure this was pre-electronic days. So if they had some doubt of being stalked by an enemy ship and those ships had these rows of cannons and they come alongside and blast

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you to pieces that was how the warfare was done with ships. And then sometimes they come close and the soldiers would jump across and there'd be spear fights and sword fights and And it was a very bloody thing, a thing where the fight was to death, both for the sailors and for the ships. But it was important to know if such a ship was nearby, because it would take time for them to sail in and get alongside, and there was a bit of manoeuvring that would go on. And so the person with a telescope would watch in the moment they saw a mast sticking over the horizon, because there's only 7 years, because of the curvature of the earth, that can see what's on your side of the horizon. But if a mast started coming up, they'd be watching. And when they saw the colours of what ship it was, the shout would go down

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to the captain, because they'd say, it's a horizon! The ship can be seen. And what that word actually means is to come into visibility. When the Bible tells us how Jesus rose from the dead, what it's saying is that something has happened to him. It happened to him that what he's been all the time there but covered by the humanity not necessarily recognizable Jesus often walked down the streets and no one took him to be more than just someone that they heard about from Nazareth. Yes he did his miracles and ladies played his connection with heaven but I'll tell you that Jesus was so normal-looking I think he also it was very good looking I can't prove that I just know that he was human totally and he had no faults but nonetheless I want

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want to tell you this, that he was declared to be the Son of God in power. Now, you know what that means for that original moment, that original Easter when Jesus Christ came to life from being dead? The resurrection was a coming – now I had better correct myself then – when he came to life, I don't mean come back to life. Jesus in his resurrection came up the other side of death never raise it again! Jesus came to life by the Holy Spirit and by God the Father, but also because, somehow, he in the very essence of who he is, he had said, that if you destroy this temple,

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talking about his body, I will raise it again in the third day. He said, I've got power to lay it down and I've got power to take it again. And he was saying that it's not just because he was a human figure and then the Holy Spirit alone makes him live. the fact that Jesus Christ came to life again is that he came to life the other side of death in power. And the resurrection is the rising for all to see. This Jesus by the way that means of course the angel that came and rolled the stone away for the woman to come and to anoint the body and for a thing to see. He didn't roll it away to let Jesus get out.

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He rolled it away to let us look in. Because prior to that moment when Jesus came to life again he was raised in the power of the resurrection and just like he appeared a little later on to the disciples and came through closed doors just like he could turn up much later on after we gone back to heaven he could come in when Paul was in prison and the Bible's Paul says the Lord Jesus stood by me he said don't worry Paul he says as you be witness for me in Jerusalem you're gonna witness for me and Rome also he He was declared to be, that doesn't mean that God made a statement, that half, he listened. 23 It was His resurrection shown Him to be Son of God in Power! 24 And if ever you've doubted whether or not Jesus could be a person who steps into your

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life, I want to tell you that 25 He is the most powerful personage of all time and history. And he is able to do what you've committed to Him, and keep your commitment to Him until that day which is precisely what Paul said, I know who I have given myself to as it were and that He is able and the key to the Christian life is knowing that Jesus in His resurrection power is strong enough to look after you and me. He's declared to be son of God in power according to the holiness of his His Resurrection. My first point is that the Resurrection accredits and proves who Jesus now is for us. Let's go on. We'll go to the second verse which is in Acts. And here

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the Apostle Paul is preaching. Now this is now over in the time of Christ has gone back to heaven and he's seated down on the right hand of the Father. He's been given the authority of the name – the one name that has the highest authority is now Jesus. And from there he rules his church for there by the Holy Spirit he empowers you and I. But the Apostle Paul got around preaching to the people in that first few generations and he was called the Apostle to the Gentiles, so he went to places like Athens. And in a very grand sermon in Acts 17, he concludes by telling them, these times of ignorance, when people haven't really known, God has overlooked. But now commands all men people, all people everywhere to repent because he has fixed the day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed

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and of this he's given assurance to all by raising him from the dead. So the resurrection accredits Jesus for the role that he has eternally to be the judge of the quick and the dead. That's kept encapsulated in the Apostle's Creed. A very historic recognition of essential Christian doctrines that Jesus is raised to be the judge of the quick and the dead. And here Paul says in Acts 17 that God has fixed today that our Father who will judge the world in righteousness, or rather God the Father will judge the people of any person with righteousness, but the judgment is by a Man. Did you notice?

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The Man Christ Jesus – the fact that He is God, yes, but He is also Man. and the Father has committed the judgement into his hand. Now do you know that our legal system has a lot to owe to the Christian traditions that have come down to us? We have got a part of our law courts that are pretty good. Actually that Jewish people had a good legal system especially about people being put to death. It was a pity that they didn t live by it when they wrongly had Jesus sentenced. But nonetheless, in our system of law and order, we find that it's important that when you have a jury, it's often said to need to be a jury of your peers, P-E-R-S, meaning

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that there's a very central part of justice when the people who decide whether you're guilty or not are those who share your humanity and all of its pressures of life and limb. And it was the case that when God decided about the judgement day, there was going to be a judge before whom every single person here today and living is going to stand before him. The Bible tells us, is appointed unto us, once to die, and after that the judgment, And this person, Jesus, is the man, and the reason why he has the credibility, the reason why he's accredited to be the judge, is because he has walked on earth, that he faced the struggles of temptation, that he knew it under the harshness of the Jewish law. That's why he lived out his, I call it a Christian life, it's really his life, under the old 16 To keep the law.

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17 And Jesus was sinless, and in his sinless perfection he then qualified to be a person who'd take the place for us in paying for our sins. the cross and on the cross as we've been talking about on Friday morning, when Jesus went to the cross there he suffered the punishment for all our sins. The Bible says he was wounded by our transgressions, he was bruised by our iniquities, and with the chastisement he experienced, we can be made peace with. It's how you get into peace with God when you recognize that his Son and died in your place and you come and admit that you're a sinner as we all are and you say God I'm sorry that I've sinned please forgive me for all of my

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sin please forgive me because Jesus has paid the price and so we see the being a man he qualifies to not only pay the price for your sin but that's the second reason why he qualifies to be the judge to decide what to do with you if you run away from his death, and do not accept how he came to be your saviour. He's the one that you face on that day, which he will judge the world in righteousness. G-d will judge the world in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed, 16 And of this he is given assurance to all by raising him from the dead. And when Jesus was raised from the dead in the middle of history, God was establish ban his judgement for the end of history, and showing the fairness of it, showing that if someone comes to him to Christ, God will forgive

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them. And God's not being unjust, to overlook if Hitler had a repented, he didn't, I don't think, that he could have been forgiven. We don't like that idea but God's judgement is just because all the sin of all the world was placed on Christ and he suffered in his death the full payment for all those sins and so he's the one who can be the judge of the world. Well that's the second thing Jesus resurrection means we'll go on to the third one and in this particular thing that we're looking at what actually happened to Jesus while he was on the and it is, I don't know whether I've given you the right one for this, this is about Joseph of Arimathea who came along and got the body of Jesus and so took away his body. Go to the next one

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please. Okay now in the book of Romans as I said I'm getting a lot of these verses out of the spots in the New Testament that the Apostle Paul wrote but he has a verse here about Jesus resurrection that's really good when I was the lecturer of theology at the college I often gave an assignment for the students to write up as to why are we forgiven our sins? Were we forgiven our sins because Jesus died on the cross and you've just heard me saying so, but what's this verse mean when it says He was delivered up for our trespasses at their sins and then it adds and raised for our justification'." And so they would write their essays to try to explain theologically what has a resurrection got to do with our salvation because it's talking about our salvation and not only being because of Jesus death but also because of his resurrection. He was raised for our justification. And

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generally speaking when we teach people the Gospel we teach them that because Jesus died for you, though you're a sinner, be like the rest of us, and though you have sinfulness as a part of your very makeup so you might do a few good things, but all the reforming you might do won't make you stop being a sinner at depth. And the other day our message was on another time that Jeremiah verse, ''the heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked," who can know it? I was talking about that sin is deeper than we generally recognise. And it's a society, people think, you know, people are relatively nice,

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they're going to go to heaven because they've been good enough and the people have been real rotters and the ones who ended up in jail and the people who are real awful, they're going to go to hell. That's an entire misunderstanding, for the truth is that the whole human race fell into sin and then not just that we're being condemned for one event happened by Adam and Eve alone and we keep turning up with since we do enough of our own sins that you still don't have to downjust Adam or Eve we're all sinners the Bible says we've all fallen short of the glory of God so there's no escape from the fact that we're heading towards

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lost eternity except that Jesus steps in and intervenes and the fact that we'll end up being given a righteousness from God is a gift of grace, not because we've earned it or we deserve it or because there's a set of things you have to do to get to be characterized as nice enough for God to let you into heaven, it's just a case that he was delivered up for our trespassers. But there's another part he was raised for our justification and that being raised for our justification is that the way that we get to be accredited as justified the way that we get to have it actually come to us it's not by our scrambling to do good things to deserve it. Not by our trying to you know paint up your appearance to look good to God. No, Jesus was raised that he will be available for us to have a connection with and for us to

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be joined to and when you come to Christ there's actually an official word for this doctrine it's called union with Christ and union with Christ is just the fact that when you come to Jesus for the forgiveness of sins he sends his spirit into your very personage to make you connected to him and you become in Christ and Christ becomes in you and because of that union with Christ, the smile the smile the Father has when he saw Jesus baptized, and he said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I'm more pleased that acceptance of the Father of the one who always did right, the one who was the apple of His eye, the one who He loves, he's beloved son he sees you connected to him and you get accepted within the love of God the technical phrase in the Bible as that you're accepted within the

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beloved the father who loves the Son and the Father who loves the Spirit and the Son who loves the Spirit as they say the love love triangle have you ever felt left out when you go somewhere new and everybody's palsy-welsing and they just ignore you. That is one of the sad problems of churches when people know each other very well and they can unwittingly somehow communicate or you're not in a circle. One of the things that happens to a church that goes through a revival time, a church that has the Spirit of God at work in it, is suddenly all those clicks disappear and there's a commonality of of love and all are accepted within the beloved because that's something that happens to us down here on earth because it happens to the moment you as a person get into Christ and he gets into you and you become united to Christ, and that's only possible because Jesus

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was raised from the dead, seated at the right hand guard and it's available for when a person comes to make peace with God and comes for the forgiveness of sins that they become united to Christ and all the attitude of the Father to accept the Son and for the Spirit to care for the Son and everything to do with the Son himself becomes aimed at you and in wrapping you and you're raised, he was raised for your justification because once you're in Jesus you are the Apple of his eye. Are you aware of how much he loves you? And despite your failures, he looks at you. You know there's a verse in the scriptures that says about our tears as Christians, says he puts our tears in his bottle.

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I think it's an old-fashioned thing of people who've got someone who's a family member in trouble, and they collect the tears of crying the person doesn't keep in the bottle, somehow to treasure for themselves and communicate to the loved one that the sorrow they have he feels on high. I know I told you before, I tend to repeat some things in my sermons all the time, but that moment when Jesus came to Paul, when he was taken up by the soldiers and being ready to set off to Rome, where probably he would be martyred, he was even worried that he'd even make the distance to Rome because of all the trouble of the Jewish people trying to get him murdered and because of what the soldiers might do. And it says that at night time, Jesus came. Now there's something about the Resurrected Jesus that he is not limited

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in the same limitations he took on at first in order to walk our shores. In order to be in our society as we are. He didn't, he didn't do miracles unless the Father so led him to do. But when he was raised from the dead, his body was different. How do I mean? Well, he turned up to one of the times of their meetings and they were afraid. They said, oh, it's a ghost, in order to somehow convince them because he had come through the door but it was locked. No wonder they thought he was a ghost. He just turned up. 20 and ah and but so there was a piece of fish on table 21 and he picked it up and ate it. 22 Now if he had been a ghost the fish will still see the fish down his 23 but if this appeared into his gullet into his swallow

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Jesus body processed the fish in order for them to see that. and he told them, so you can see I've got flesh and bones. Interestingly he didn't say flesh and blood. And some people try and talk as to whether or not he had blood when he was resurrected and I just can't answer that. But Jesus showed himself to have physicality and yet he came through doors and Paul when he was in prison, Jesus, now this is not Jesus prior to his resurrection there was some event that was happening Jesus in His ministry time when He did other miracles. But this is Jesus having raised

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from the dead, having been seen by the disciples 40 days and having returned to heaven and sitting at the right-hand of God, yet He could turn up in Paul's prison. And the Bible records that He stood by Paul and said to Him, Don't you worry, Paul. Like you've given a witness Well, as for me, even in Jerusalem you are going to do the same in Rome, so at least I guarantee you wouldn't get killed in the way by all the ones planning to kill Chang Do you know that in something that happens with Jesus today, that in a Christian's life he can get into difficult circumstances and all of a sudden there's another presence He may be seated at the right hand of God, but what He's doing is praying for you and for me. He can come in His resurrection person, in heaven, and only come to you.

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King of Kings, what do you mean with this? That's actually the centre of what is to be a Christian. To recognise that he not only died for you but that he is living for you. He's alive for you, and the centre piece of being a Christian is not just about what's happened in the past with Jesus. Not just about you getting into heaven at the end of life, but it is about the present of someone Who can come and presence himself at any moment actually he wants us to know he's there even when we don't see him and so he said to his disciples, where two or more of you gather together in my name there am I, in the midst. Jesus is here. There used to be a chorus, Robert Coleman the singer used to get us to sing and and it was Jesus is Here and when I first heard him sing and I thought well that's sort of one those semi emotional songs

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they sing over and over again you know Jesus is Here but one day it's suddenly dawned on me that's probably the biggest truth that I've discovered for the Christian life that every day and in every scenario sometimes I may not see But I take his presence by faith. He said, I'll never leave you nor forsake you. 35 And when you count on his presence, when you trust in the truthfulness of his statement, when you understand that his resurrection was showing him now to be accredited as the one for whom your forgiveness is, his resurrection shows that he's there for you. and the heart of Christianity is that you might know him and the power of his resurrection. I could go on on this theme but could we put up again our first verse, the one that is in

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Philippians is at chapter 4 verse 10, chapter 3 verse 10. The Apostle Paul is speaking about the aim he has as an everyday aim, how to you know understand your Christian journey. That I may know him. And knowing Jesus is something that actually began when you first came for the forgiveness of sins. There are some people who try to do things in order to be more forgiven but they don't know him, and when you talk to them they have no sense of them and Jesus' It's not about whether you've been through the ceremonies of the church it's not even about and we we have baptism but baptism will only get you wet Baptism is just an outward sign to say that you know Him and if you were to come to me after this service and say, Jim I'd like to be a Christian would you baptize me I'm not going to want to turn you down but you know what I have to do

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it first. His help you see this point that's not a ceremony you have to go through. It's nothing to do with the Church or any of what it might do for you it is that you got to know Him and the way you know Him is a business between you and Him. There must be that moment whether it's a slow thing you gradually move in to , whether it's a crisis time with tears it doesn't really matter about the human scenario of this . But there comes a moment when you understand that he is dealing with you and he's come to call you and he comes come under me all you who labor and are heavy latent and I will give you rest take my yoke upon you and learn from me because I am meek and lonely of hearts and you will find rest for your souls the call of Jesus to come to him that's And that's what the Gospel, the book of Romans is all about.

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The Jesus is calling. And the Jesus offers Himself for you to know Him, and in knowing Him you know the power of His resurrection and all of that means for your Christian life and what it will mean for when you go through physical death. I want to finish with one of my favorite stories. I got it out of a book, I believe it's true ,but I don't have any more evidence other than I believe the writer of the book, but i like it partly because it's about an old man. I like it even more these days because it was an old man who was Jim. So I identify with this story, but this fellow was not one very good with words. He wasn't one who was able to do much and he had a job that worked on the electric lines and wires

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and all and he was very good at what he did in his job. But he wasn't someone who was very eloquent but he had come to know Christ and when they put him in various places he his job was to check up on the wires and and do all sorts of things where keeping them all connected. But he'd be in different parts of city but he had a habit of when he was close enough to his home church I think he was an Anglican. To his home church he'd go there in the lunch hour and he'd go to pray well, when he went to pray because he wasn't eloquent he didn't say very much but he'd come in and sit down be there sometime and there was a priest in that church sometimes in those big churches with the big columns and all the priests are hanging around inside somewhere and they wear the robes and

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there was one of those people who came out and noticed Jim coming so the man the priest put himself nearby maybe behind one of those pillars where he could listen in to Jim's prayer and you got to do that quite a number of times but the thing was Jim didn't say very much they MITCH. They just said.. Jesus this is Jim. And he'd wait and he'd pray and go back to his work. Well it came a day at lunchtime when he didn't come. The Minister of the Church noticed he didn't come but he worked out enough that Jim worked somewhere nearby and so he went looking looking to see why he stopped coming. And the men working on the lines told him that yeah, Jim worked with them, but he'd fallen off somewhere and he's in hospital. He's greatly

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damaged by this fall. So the minister went along to the hospital. But when he got there, I think he was too late. Now, I'm not sure the detail now exactly how soon he got there but he got there. And the nurses in the ward said about how he died. But they said he told us something. And they said that when he was dying, he sat up in bed. I think I've got the story remembered right. and a voice was heard. Jim this is Jesus and he went to eternity. Now actually it is a fact in religious Christian circles that a number of people in their death beds have experiences of seeing Christ, or having something happen where they allowed to welcome into eternity by a person. I want to tell you I believe those stories. For a number of reasons I won't go into I want to tell you that But Jesus said, when you become a Christian, I will never leave you nor forsake you.

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And when there's a person who learns to know Him and rests in the power of His Resurrection that gets accentuated all the more and so it's talked about going home and Jesus doesn't it to an angel alone to come and collect you. But he talks about when you go home he's going to receive you. As a matter fact he's in glory now. Part of why he went there he said to his disciples I go to prepare a place for you and when I go I'll come back again and he's going to take us to be with himself. So all of eternity we are going to remember this last point about Jesus resurrection it is that we might know him and be with him because we're going to be with him for eternity I'm asking you the question this morning do you know him by coming to him is a needy sinner that gets forgiven

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and justified coming to him do let him live out his power through your life know that power of his resurrection that's what it is to be a Christian let us pray heavenly Father I give you thanks for the gospel as the book of Romans delineates it thank you for the Apostle Paul even in the other books you wrote like Philippians. He tells of his ambition that I might know him and the power of his resurrection. And this day the one that the angels came and rolled the stone back not to let Jesus out but let humanity look in on an empty tomb and believe that Jesus has died for our sins and Jesus has risen and Jesus is available now to be our Savior. May it be that we'll have the joy of seeing people day by day come to know this Christ and have the joy of seeing them experience what it is to walk with Jesus, we ask it in his name. Amen.

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