Yesterday I received an email newsletter from my friend, Darrell Brazell, who is a pastor in Lawrence, Kansas. I liked his sermon summary so well that I wanted to share it. Since it didn’t have a link, the only way I could think of to share it was through my blog. I hope it encourages you as it encouraged me.
|From New Hope Fellowship’s newsletter, August 2012–by Darrell Brazell:
“While preaching through Ephesians chapter 1, I was especially struck by Paul’s proclamation that God makes the same power that raised Jesus from the dead available to you and me. I’ve read this passage countless times in my adult life, but the Sunday morning before I preached through it, I sensed the Father giving it new weight.What I sensed was the enormity of the forces opposing Jesus’ resurrection. Think about it: II Corinthians 5:21 says “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” When did that take place? I believe it was while Jesus was on the cross. I believe it was right before Jesus cried out, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” God placed the sins of every individual from Adam to the last person who walks the face of the earth on his Son. He became our sin. That’s why the Father had to look away.
The Son, who to that point, had never experienced the separation from the Father and the Spirit that comes with sin, became the very sin that forced the Father to look away. He took that sin to the tomb. Now think about the vested interest the enemy of our souls had in Jesus staying there. If there is no resurrection, he wins!
Remember also that Jesus had told the disciples quite clearly he was going to be killed and then rise again so Satan certainly knew God was going to resurrect him. So how much of Hell’s army do you think he had guarding the tomb? The Roman soldiers standing outside were only a minute representation of the forces Satan had fighting to prevent the catastrophe of resurrection.
Yet on Sunday morning, at the exact moment the Father had pre-ordained since before time, He called his Son forth and resurrection power rolled the stone away blowing every minion, every warrior, every demon, every regiment of Satan’s forces away like a carpenter blows sawdust off a piece of wood. All hell’s forces were no match for God’s resurrection power.
And Paul tells us, that same resurrection power is available for you and me. Now, I know many people facing many seemingly overwhelming things. Financial struggles, marital difficulties, addiction, trauma, sexual abuse, abandonment, etc. I know from a human perspective everything seems impossible. Darkness overwhelms, despair reigns. There is absolutely no hope in sight. Yet does it compare to the darkness that came over the earth while Jesus was on the cross? Does it compare to the utter sense of despair the disciples must have felt on Saturday?
Please understand, I am not in any way, shape or form minimizing your problems. In fact, I’m guessing they are even bigger and worse than you know. However, if the forces of Hell could not keep Jesus in the tomb when they had to be in their absolute strongest and most concentrated form, what chance do they have against God’s resurrection power unleashed in your life and mine?
Now that is a place from which New Hope can begin! To listen to “If We Only Knew” click here.
Because of the resurrection, Darrell”
|New Hope Fellowship| 1449 Kasold | Lawrence | KS | 66049|