Sermon at First Presbyterian Church Lockhart

"Risen Hope"

Isaiah 25:6-9, Psalm 114, I Corinthians 5:6-8, Luke 24:13-35

April 4, 2010

by James Greene

 

†††††††††† In this Easter Sunday we are called into Hope, and Joy as the people of God.We are called to this in spite of the trials that we face in our journey, because Christ has gone to death, and beyond, and ďreturnedĒ.It is a peaceful joy when we realize that God really is with us!There is Peace, when understand, how God walks with us, and cares for us, in the midst of, all of our journey.Christ comes, reconciling us to the Father, that we may have faith and hope in God through Him.He has come showing us Godís intent for us in His work of salvation, and His work of reconciliation.

†††††††††† Our Hope and Joy is heard, in the verses of Godís Word, this Easter Sunday.

 

†††††††††† In Isaiah this morning, we see the prophesy in the images, of a God of action who prepares a feast for all people, and removes the veil of death that covers the peoples of all nations.The Lord Almighty ďwill swallow up death foreverIt is a vision of Christís initiating, and ushering in, the Kingdom of Heaven through His death and resurrection.

†††††††††† The most important thing is that we realize that He Is Risen!!†† He has overcome the grave.It is the heart and soul of The Good News.It is the heart and soul of our joy and our belief.The call across 2,000 years is as important and as joyous to us here today, as it was back then.

 

In Psalm 114 reveals the focus of God where Judah and Israel become Godís sanctuary and dominion.It is the presence of the Lord that causes the earth to tremble and springs to break forth with water.It is a picture of Godís power revealed in creation.

 

In I Corinthians we see, how Christ, in his death and resurrection, has changed the recipe of bread (the recipe of wisdom) for our lives.He has changed our focus from the desire to give back blow for blow, pain for pain, and evil for evil, to the focus of wisdom that calls for, a bread (a wisdom) made (with out, the yeast of sin) which produces a bread of sincerity and truth.

 

In Luke we see how Christ literally shows the two Apostles how he is revealed in all of the Prophets, and all of the Scriptures.How the Scriptures outline the coming of the Christ to redeem all peoples, all nations and the creation.

It really is a testament for us, to study our Bibles.But it is even more of a testament to His resurrection, and about His love for us.

If we could have just been, a mouse in the pocket of one of the Apostles, on this

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walk, just imagine the notes and understanding we could have gained from the conversation.It would be a journey of a lifetime.It was a picture of Godís fingerprints revealed on the pages of the Scriptures showing us the way of Christ and the direction to the Father.It literally illuminates all the scriptures for us.

 

Just as today, Jesus comes along side of us, in our journey, and walks with us, talks with us, explaining and showing us the answers; filling in all of the gaps in our knowledge of the facts, of the Good News, as we know them.

 

As we continue to read the Bible in the depth of the text, we discover the longer we read and the more we read scripture, the more we realize how much is packed in between the covers of the Bible.†† Also how little, we truly know and understand in our journey through the text and through this life.We need the Holy Spirit to come along side us and teach us.It is through the Holy Spirit in the text that Christ is revealed to us.Christ is the living Word, in the written Word.Like the Apostles, Jesus is suddenly present with us when he blesses and breaks the bread.It reminds us that He is present with us in Communion, as well as in The Word in the Scriptures.

He is Risen! (Today*)†† He is Present!(Today*)

It is the Joy of reality that He has Risen, and it is the Good News, in our lives, and it changes our lives Forever!Just as Scripture tells us, ďwhere ever two or more are gathered in my name, I will be there alsoĒ, He is here.He is here in the midst of us, as we worship.Just as God was dwelling in the midst of Israel in the Wilderness, Christ is Risen and he is present in the midst of our lives, our faith and our worship.He truly is Risen!

 

Finally, there is the Joy of truly realizing what Christ has done in his word and action.He did Rise from the dead.This gives us Hope in the Good News.He explained the fore telling of His coming and His purpose; laid out in the Scriptures.

 

†††††††††† He is Risen!Means to us, today, that we, as the people of God, can live in certain Hope, and certain knowledge, that as Godís Children, we too, through faith in Christ, will rise again.

 

†††††††††† God is a God of action, not in the past, in the Scriptures, but now, Today, here in our lives, and faith, because the Scriptures are the about the Living Word that is alive today.God reveals his presence now, in the midst of us; just like Israel in the wilderness, and just like in the sanctuary of the Temple.

 

God reveals his presence- in Christís resurrection!

Godís action and presence is revealed in the breaking of bread today, just as Christ did with the Apostles at Emmaus.He is Risen!He is Risenindeed!!!! ÖÖ

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†††††††††† In the Name of Ö††† the Father,†† the Son,†† and the Holy Spirit.Amen†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† 2