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God Raised Jesus From the Dead

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BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN CHRIST JESUS: ONE OF MY FAVORITE HEROES IN AMERICAN HISTORY IS THOMAS JEFFERSON. THOMAS JEFFERSON, YOU WOULD QUICKLY RECOGNIZE AS THE AUTHOR OF THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE. BUT FEW PEOPLE REALIZE, FEW PEOPLE KNOW, THAT THOMAS JEFFERSON ALSO PUBLISHED HIS OWN VERSION OF THE BIBLE. IN HIS VERSION OF THE BIBLE, HE INCLUDED ALL OF THE MORAL AND ETHICAL CONTENT OF SCRIPTURE AND THE WORDS OF JESUS. BUT HE ELIMINATED EVERYTHING SUPERNATURAL. IN FACT, THE LAST VERSE IN JEFFERSON'S BIBLE READS LIKE THIS: "THERE THEY LAID JESUS AND ROLLED A GREAT STONE AT THE MOUTH OF THE SEPULCHER AND DEPARTED." THE GOLDEN RULE IS PROMINENT IN JEFFERSON'S BIBLE, BUT THERE IS NOT ANY RESURRECTION. A GREAT AND INFLUENTIAL MAN AND I WOULD EVEN ADMIT ONE OF MY HEROES IN AMERICAN HISTORY. BUT THOMAS JEFFERSON, UNFORTUNATELY, HE WAS NOT A MAN OF FAITH. LIKE HIS NAMESAKE IN TODAY'S GOSPEL LESSON, HE WAS A DOUBTING THOMAS. HE DID NOT BELIEVE THAT JESUS WAS GOD BECAUSE IT DID ... NOT ... MAKE ... SENSE. EVEN SO, I DO AND I THINK WE ALL DO THANK GOD FOR ALL THE ACCOMPLISHMENTS THAT JEFFERSON BROUGHT TO OUR NATION; ESPECIALLY THE BILL HE WROTE ESTABLISHING RELIGIOUS FREEDOM AND HIS STRONG SUPPORT OF SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE. BUT SUPPOSE JUST FOR A MINUTE THAT BILL, THAT LAW, GRANTING RELIGIOUS FREEDOM, HAD NEVER BEEN PASSED. OR, WHAT IF, MAYBE NOT EVEN IF WHAT HAD BEEN PASSED, WHAT IF IN THE FUTURE ... WHAT IF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM IS REPEALED? WHAT IF SOMEWHERE OR SOMETIME IN THE FUTURE YOU ARE FORBIDDEN, FORBIDDEN OF TELLING SOMEBODY ABOUT JESUS? IT HAS HAPPENED IN THE HISTORY OF THE CHURCH, NOT JUST IN THE BOOK OF ACTS BUT ELSEWHERE AS WELL THROUGHOUT HISTORY. SO IT BENEFITS US TO CONSIDER THE RESPONSE THAT GOD GAVE THE APOSTLES ... THE RESPONSE THAT GOD LET THESE APOSTLES SHARE WITH THE AUTHORITIES THAT TOLD THEM NOT TO TALK ABOUT JESUS. THEIR MESSAGE REMAINED: "GOD ... RAISED ... JESUS FROM ... THE DEAD.' THIS IS, OF COURSE, THE EARLY HISTORY OF THE CHRISTIAN CHURCH SHORTLY AFTER THE RISEN JESUS ASCENDED INTO HEAVEN, TO BE RECEIVED AT THE RIGHT HAND OF GOD WITH ALL AUTHORITY AND MAJESTY AND MULTITUDES ... THOUSANDS WERE CONVERTED ON THE DAY OF PENTECOST. AND OVER THESE NEXT WEEKS MORE AND MORE PEOPLE BELIEVED IN THE LORD JESUS EVEN THOUGH THE LEADERS OF THE JEWISH PEOPLE, THE JEWISH RELIGIOUS LEADERS WERE OPPOSED TO THE MESSAGE. AND THEY EVEN DIRECTLY FORBID THE APOSTLES FROM SPEAKING ABOUT CHRIST. EVEN SO, MORE AND MORE PEOPLE CAME TO PRAISE GOD'S SELECTION BY EVEN GRANTING THOSE APOSTLES THE ABILITY TO PERFORM NUMEROUS MIRACLES AND THEN THE WORDS OF OUR TEXT HAPPENS. THE HIGH PRIEST ARRESTED THE APOSTLES AND PUT THEM IN JAIL. WHY WERE THEY UPSET? IT WENT BEYOND JUST THE JEALOUSY THAT THESE PEOPLE WERE NO LONGER FOLLOWING THE JEWISH HIGH PRIEST. NOW THEY WERE FOLLOWING THE APOSTLES. IT WAS MORE THAN THAT. IT WAS THE SAME REASON THEY WERE OPPOSED TO JESUS. JESUS TOLD THEM THEY WERE SINNERS! AND THAT THEY NEEDED A SAVIOR. JESUS TOLD THEM THAT THE SON OF GOD ... IMMANUEL ... CAME TO THIS EARTH TO DIE FOR THEM. THAT WAS THE ONLY WAY TO GET A RIGHT RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD AND FREE SALVATION FROM GOD WHO CAME TO EARTH AND WHO ROSE FROM THE DEAD. IT DID NOT MAKE SENSE TO THEM. AND THEY WOULD NOT ACCEPT IT. THEY THREW THE APOSTLES IN JAIL. AND HOW DID THAT TURN OUT FOR THEM? HOW DID THAT TURN OUT FOR THOSE WHO PROHIBITED THE APOSTLES FROM TEACHING? YOU SAW THAT IT DIDN'T. IT'S SO IRONIC THEY SENT THE TEMPLE GUARDS BACK TO THE PRISON THE NEXT MORNING TO GET THE APOSTLES OUT OF PRISON TO PUT THEM ON TRIAL. AND LO AND BEHOLD, WHILE THE GUARD WAS OUTSIDE THE DOOR, THE PRISON CELL WAS EMPTY. THEY MUST HAVE BEEN PUZZLED. PUZZLED! HOW DID THESE GUYS GET OUT? NOW I HEAR THEY'RE PREACHING IN THE TEMPLE AND THEY WERE DEFINITELY PUZZLED, BUT EVEN THAT DID NOT LEAD THEM TO RECOGNIZE THE TRUTH OF THE MESSAGE. THE JEWISH LEADERS REMAINED ADAMANT IN THEIR ANIMOSITY TOWARD JESUS AND HIS FOLLOWERS. "WE GAVE YOU STRICT ORDERS NOT TO TEACH IN THIS NAME. YET YOU HAVE FILLED JERUSALEM WITH YOUR TEACHING AND ARE DETERMINED TO MAKE US GUILTY OF THIS MAN'S BLOOD." FOR THAT HIGH PRIEST, THE NAME JESUS WAS WORSE THAN ANY FOUR-LETTER CURSE WORD. HE WOULDN'T EVEN USE THAT NAME JESUS. HE CALLED HIM THE ONE AND THAT NAME. HE REFUSED TO SPEAK THE NAME THAT IS ABOVE EVERY NAME. THE ONLY NAME UNDER HEAVEN GIVEN TO PEOPLE BY WHICH WE MUST BE SAVED. HE WANTED TO AVOID THE GUILT BY WIPING OUT THE MESSENGERS. FRANKLY WE LIVE IN A LAND THANKFULLY ... WE LIVE IN A LAND OF RELIGIOUS LIBERTY. HOW GRATEFUL WE ARE FOR FREEDOM TO WORSHIP AND SHARE JESUS' NAME! WE DON'T HAVE TO BE AFRAID OF POLICE OFFICERS STORMING THROUGH OUR DOORS AND HAULING ALL OF US OFF TO PRISON THIS MORNING. AND FOR THAT, I'M IMMENSELY THANKFUL. BUT, IN AMERICA TODAY, MODERN AMERICA TODAY, THERE WILL BE TIMES WHEN, NOT JUST MAYBE, THERE WILL BE TIMES WHEN JESUS' ENEMIES CHALLENGE US FOR SHARING THE GOSPEL. WE MIGHT BE TOLD, OR AT LEAST WE'RE AFRAID OF BEING TOLD, "YOU CAN'T FORCE YOUR MORALITY ON ME!" OR, "YOU CAN'T PROVE THAT JESUS WAS ANY MORE THAN JUST A GREAT TEACHER." OR PERHAPS THERE MIGHT EVEN BE A GOVERNMENT GRANT THAT'S OFFERED OR AN EMPLOYER TO GIVE THE JOB UNDER THE CONDITION: YOU CAN'T TELL PEOPLE ABOUT JESUS AND SHARE YOUR CHRISTIAN FAITH IN THIS GRANT OR ON THE JOB. AND TOLERANT, OPEN-MINDED PEOPLE CAN BECOME VERY NARROW-MINDED WHEN THE CHRISTIAN FAITH THAT IS SHARED CAN BE ONLY ONE WAY TO HEAVEN. AND THAT WAY ANY WAY YOU CHOOSE TO LIVE, MAY NOT BE CORRECT UNLESS IT'S FOLLOWING GOD'S MORALITY, GOD'S LAW. AND I FIND THAT DOUBTING THOMAS IN ME WANTS TO YIELD. SO OFTEN IT'S EASY TO THINK AS LONG AS NO ONE ELSE TRIES TO CONVINCE ME OF THEIR BELIEFS, I DON'T NEED TO TRY AND CONVINCE ANYBODY ELSE. OUR MINDS MAY TRY TO CONVINCE US TO REFRAIN FROM SHARING WHAT'S BEYOND OUR UNDERSTANDING, IN BIBLE STUDY TODAY WE TALKED ABOUT THE TRIUNE GOD - THE TRINITY. AND MAYBE BECAUSE I CAN'T EXPLAIN THAT, I WON'T TALK ABOUT IT. HOW EASY IT IS TO FIND A REASON NOT TO SHARE THE MESSAGE. IT ISN'T FUN TO ADMIT, "I AM GUILTY OF THIS MAN'S BLOOD!" IT ISN'T FUN TO TELL SOMEBODY ELSE THE LAW BECAUSE IT MEANS THAT I NEED TO TELL MYSELF THAT LAW THAT I'M A SINNER. SO GOD GRANT US THE STRENGTH - GOD GRANT US THE STRENGTH TO ... THAT OUR MESSAGE REMAINS THE SAME. GOD RAISED THIS JESUS FROM THE DEAD. THAT INCLUDES SHARING THE MESSAGE OF THE LAW TO SHARE WHY HE DIED THAT IN HIM WE HAVE REDEMPTION THROUGH HIS BLOOD. THE FORGIVENESS OF SIN IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE RICHES OF GOD'S GRACE. AND IF ANYONE EVER PROHIBITS US FROM SPEAKING OF THE ONE GOD RAISED FROM THE DEAD, MAY WE REPLY AS THE APOSTLES "WE MUST OBEY GOD RATHER THAN HUMAN BEINGS." IT IS QUITE A LEAP OF FAITH TO STAND UP TO AUTHORITY IN THAT WAY. WHEN GOD'S WORD COMMANDS WE MUST DO EVEN WHEN FORBIDDEN BY HUMAN AUTHORITIES. WHAT GOD'S WORD PROHIBITS, WE WILL NOT DO EVEN IF HUMAN AUTHORITY TELLS US WE MUST. WHILE THERE IS NO AUTHORITY ON EARTH, NO GOVERNMENT EXISTS EXCEPT THAT WHICH GOD HAS ESTABLISHED, CHRISTIANS ARE BOUND TO OBEY GOD RATHER THAN AUTHORITY. WHEN THE AUTHORITY OVERSTEPS ITS BOUNDS, AND OPPOSES THE ONE THAT IS GIVEN BY GOD, THAT GAVE THEM THAT AUTHORITY. AND SO, WHAT DID THE CHRISTIANS DO IN OUR TEXT? WELL, THE APOSTLES HAD NO CHOICE. THEY WERE BOUND; THEY WERE OBLIGATED. THEY WERE UNDER ORDERS FROM JESUS TO PROCLAIM THE GOSPEL. THE GOOD NEWS. AND AS THEY DID, THE HOLY SPIRIT GAVE THEM THE WORDS THAT THEY SHOULD SPEAK. AND AFTER THE HOLY SPIRIT'S WORK TO MAKE DISCIPLES. AFTER THEIR SUPERNATURAL ESCAPE FROM PRISON, THE ANGEL ... GOD EVEN SENT AN ANGEL TO REMIND THEM ABOUT THEIR JOB. "GO, STAND IN THE TEMPLE COURTS AND TELL THE PEOPLE THE FULL MESSAGE OF THIS NEW LIFE. CLEARLY, GOD WANTED, AND WANTS, THIS MESSAGE SHARED. THAT JESUS LIVES, AND JESUS RULES ALL THINGS. JESUS EVEN RULES THE BARS OF THE PRISON. HE EVEN RULES OVER THE JAIL CELLS AND THE ANGEL OF THE LORD FREED THEM AND ORDERED THEM TO FOLLOW THROUGH ON THE GREAT COMMISSION. HE PROCLAIMED THAT ALL POWER HAD BEEN GIVEN TO HIM AND THEN HE PROMISES TO BE WITH US. AND WHAT A SPECIAL BLESSING THAT IS WHEN WE CONSIDER THE POSSIBILITY OF MEANING TO SAY WE MUST OBEY GOD RATHER THAN PEOPLE. WE MUST STAND UP TO HUMAN AUTHORITY WHATEVER IT IS, EVEN IF IT'S IN OPPOSITION OF A FRIEND OR A NEIGHBOR. JESUS IS WITH US IN THAT SITUATION AND HE WILL TAKE CARE OF US. WE'RE COMPELLED FRIENDS TO SHARE THE GREAT TRUTH OF JESUS THAT GOD RAISED JESUS FROM THE DEAD. ADD THE HUMAN FEELINGS THE JEWISH LEADERS HAD FORBIDDEN SHARING JESUS' NAME, CONSIDER ONE MORE THING. HOW THE APOSTLES CONTINUED TO SHARE THE GOSPEL. RECOGNIZE THE APOSTLES DID NOT RIOT. THEY DID NOT PICK UP ARMS AND BEGIN TO FIGHT WITH THE GUARDS. BUT RATHER, THEY OBEYED THE LAW WHILE STILL MAINTAINING AND SHOWING RESPECT FOR THE AUTHORITIES THAT WERE IN OPPOSITION TO GOD. THEY TRUSTED THAT GOD WOULD PROTECT THEM. WHEN THE AUTHORITIES SENT SOLDIERS TO TAKE THEM BACK TO TRIAL, THEY WENT ALONG TRUSTING THAT GOD WAS WITH THEM. AND THEN LET'S TAKE A LOOK AT THE APOSTLE'S WORDS: "THE GOD OF OUR FATHERS RAISED JESUS FROM THE DEAD -- WHOM YOU HAD KILLED BY HANGING HIM ON A TREE. GOD EXALTED HIM TO HIS OWN RIGHT HAND AS PRINCE AND SAVIOR THAT HE MIGHT GIVE REPENTANCE AND FORGIVENESS OF SINS TO ISRAEL." [ACTS 5:30-31] THAT'S QUITE AN EXAMPLE THERE. EVEN IF WE STAND UP AND WE OBEY GOD RATHER THAN PEOPLE, WE DON'T HAVE TO DO IT IN A WAY THAT MAKES OTHER PEOPLE MAD AT US OR MAKE OTHER PEOPLE FIGHT OR TAKE OUR LIVES. WE DON'T HAVE TO DO IT IN A WAY WHERE WE LOSE OUR JOBS. WE CAN BE WISE ABOUT IT AND SHARE EASTER. TELLING THEM THE REASON FOR THE HOPE THAT WE HAVE. THIS BEAUTIFUL AND HARD-HITTING DECLARATION SHOWED THE HEARERS THEIR SINS. THAT YOU CRUCIFIED HIM. YOU KILLED HIM BY HANGING HIM ON A TREE. AND YET GOD RAISED HIM FROM THE DEAD. WELL THEN THE MESSAGE: THE MESSAGE WAS REPENTANCE AND FORGIVENESS OF SINS. AND THAT'S THE SAME MESSAGE THAT GOD GIVES TO YOU AND TO ME. IT WAS AND IT IS JESUS MESSAGE AS WELL AND PROCLAIMING IT IS OUR PRIVILEGE, IS OUR HONOR, IS OUR SOLEMN RESPONSIBILITY. HE ALSO SAYS "WE ARE WITNESSES OF THESE THINGS, AND SO IS THE HOLY SPIRIT, WHOM GOD HAS GIVEN TO THOSE WHO OBEY HIM." [VERSE 32] THE APOSTLES HAD SEEN THE CRUCIFIXION AND HAD SEEN THE EMPTY TOMB AND THEY SAW THE RISEN LORD AND THEY TOUCHED HIM. AND THEY CELEBRATED THE TRUTH THAT HE WAS A MAN AND BECAUSE OF THAT THEY WERE WITNESSES. WITNESSES SHARE WHAT THEY KNOW. YOU AND I ARE WITNESSES AS WELL. WE MAY NOT HAVE TOUCHED JESUS. THESE EYES MAY NOT HAVE PHYSICALLY SEEN HIM. BUT GOD'S WORD HAS SHOWN HIM TO US ... HAS REVEALED HIM TO US, AND WE PUT OUR FAITH IN THE TRUTH THAT THIS WORD OF SCRIPTURE SHARED. THE RISEN LORD AFTER DYING FOR OUR SINS SITS IN GLORY RULING ALL THINGS. THAT'S OUR MESSAGE TO SHARE. I WILL ADMIT THERE IS NOTHING QUITE LIKE THE FEAR THAT GRIPS YOUR HEART WHEN THE CUBAN IMMIGRATION OFFICIAL KNOCKS ON THE HOTEL ROOM DOOR YOU'RE STAYING IN AT 10 p.m. AT NIGHT, AND TELLS YOU TO OPEN UP. AND THEN HE GOES ON TO TELL YOU HOW YOU'RE BREAKING YOUR VISA BECAUSE YOU'RE TEACHING A BIBLE STUDY. WELL WHEN THAT HAPPENED TO ME, THE HOLY SPIRIT MUST HAVE GIVEN ME THE WORDS TO SAY AND THE WORST FEAR WAS WHEN I MUMBLED SOMETHING IN SPANISH, I'M NOT SURE WHAT I SAID. AND THE GUY I WAS TALKING TO DIDN'T UNDERSTAND A WORD BECAUSE HE VERY SLOWLY SPOKE IN SIMPLE SPANISH: TOMORROW YOU'RE COMING TO MY OFFICE. YOU HAVE AN APPOINTMENT. SO HE LEFT. EARLY THE NEXT MORNING THE OTHER MISSIONARY, PASTOR SPRAIN AND I WENT TO THE OFFICE WITH ONE OF THE CUBAN PASTORS AND WE WERE REMINDED THAT TOURISTS IN THE COUNTRY, WHICH WE WERE, ARE NOT AUTHORIZED, UNDER THE LAWS OF THE LAND, TO PREACH, OR TO TEACH, A BIBLE STUDY. SUCH ACTIONS VIOLATE THE TERMS OF OUR VISA. AND WE SAT THERE AND WE RECOGNIZED THE LAW. AND THEN THE CUBAN PASTOR SPOKE, AND HE SAID: "WHEN THEIR FRIENDS ASK QUESTIONS ABOUT ANYTHING, EVEN A RELIGIOUS THING, THEY CAN GIVE AN ANSWER, RIGHT?" THE OFFICIAL SAID, "YES", AND SO WE KNEW THAT THE GOSPEL DOOR WAS STILL OPEN FOR US. SO I WASN'T THROWN IN JAIL. WE WERE RELEASED WITH THAT WARNING AND WE CONTINUED TO SHARE THE GOSPEL. ALSO OBEYED THE LAW OF THE VISA. BUT DOING IT IN A WAY THAT CONFORMED WITH THE LAW OF THE LAND. FRIENDS, YOU CAN FIND YOUR WAY TO SHARE JESUS WITH THOSE AROUND YOU. THINK OF WHAT THE HIGH PRIEST ANGRILY COMPLAINED ABOUT. HE ACCUSED: "YOU HAVE FILLED JERUSALEM WITH THIS TEACHING!" WAS THEIR MESSAGE. RIGHT? BUT THIS ANGRY COMPLAINT "FILLED JERUSALEM WITH JESUS!" WAS ACTUALLY A HIGH COMPLIMENT FOR THE DISCIPLES. EVERY CHRISTIAN CAN TRY TO EMULATE THAT. DO AS THEY DID. FILL THE VALLEY WITH THE FULL MESSAGE OF NEW LIFE: FILL THIS COUNTRY WITH JESUS! GOD RAISED HIM FROM THE DEAD! MAY THAT POWER STRENGTHEN US TO FOLLOW THROUGH. AMEN.

Video Details

Duration: 18 minutes and 11 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
License: Dotsub - Standard License
Genre: None
Producer: R & M
Director: Jesus
Views: 64
Posted by: hischild on Apr 29, 2016

It's a privilege for me to share this Closed Captioned Sermon by Pastor Steven Wagenknecht of Abiding Savior in Weslaco, Texas. The sermon text is: Acts 5:18:32 (NIV 2011)

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