Sermon: How Jesus Wages Warfare Summary: The most significant event in history is the death, burial and resurrection of Christ because in this he defeated death and gives the hope of eternal life in a new, imperishable body. Understanding of this is important because it is the foundation of our faith and gives us the correct worldview, which informs us on the nature of spiritual warfare as Jesus fought it. Know: Jesus fought our battle through total obedient faith and sacrificial, selfless servant hood, which is how we also need to fight the battle Feel: Indebted to Christ eternally as savior and Lord for fighting our battle and granting us victory in our own struggle. Do: Attempt to articulate the significance of the Gospel, and particularly the resurrection, and the implications it has for how we are to think and live in the world. Text: 1 Cor 15 Scripture Reading: 1 Cor 15:57-58 Intro: 1. I read a "brilliant" explanation of Jesus walking on the water last week a. Weather conditions used to be different, and ice formed on Galilee b. Jesus stepped on piece of ice, it broke off, and wind blew him out to the boat! c. Nothing new, people have been trying to explain away miracles - William Barclay's Commentaries - Says that Jesus "waded" out to his disciples - Feeding of 5000, Jesus shared, everyone else had own food and moved with remorse, shared. Miracle was in changing of hearts, not multiplying loaves. 2. Paul emphasizes the greatest miracle a. 1 Cor 15:1-8 - Jesus appeared to many people, the tomb was empty] b. Would have been easy to debunk, produce his dead body c. Jesus rose from the grave! 3. His death, burial resurrection the most significant event in all history I. Jesus defeated the power of death (15:20-26) A. Death does not mean ceasing to exist 1. Idea of death is separation 2. Speak of someone passing away, passing on 3. The death Paul speaks of here is separation from God B. Paul contrasts Adam v.s. Christ 1. In Adam all die - What does that mean? a. Adam's sin brought death into the world - He was separated from God in the garden - He died b. (15:56) - Sting of death is sin - Sin poisons and corrupts our nature - It is a poison that causes us to die eternally c. (15:56) - Power of sin is the law - Sin uses the law to condemn and kill you - Adam broke a rule, and as a result died d. How many have never broken ANY of God's rules - Sin has you hostage - Sin will kill you eternally in Hell 2. But in Christ all will be made alive a. He died for our sins, taking sin out of the equation b. (Heb 2:14-15) - Rendered Satan powerless - Satan uses God's law to condemn - Jesus took the penalty on himself - He tasted death, separation, hell, to save us c. Not just his death, but his resurrection - The passion emphasizes his death - The picture is not complete without the resurrection C. Paul speaks of Jesus resurrection as the "first fruits" 1. We are doing a garden again this year 2. Tomatoes, strawberries, cucumbers, etc. 3. Later this fall, will be red ones, ready to pick. First fruits 4. Means there will be more to follow D. Jesus is a trail blazer, a pioneer 1. Jesus blazed a trail to Heaven in his resurrection 2. (15:23) Those that belong to him will follow his trail II. Jesus will give us a new body A. This body we have wears out 1. Use Hair pieces/ False teeth / Eye glasses / Wrinkle cream 2. Heart transplants / Prosthetic limbs, etc… 3. Can only retread so long until they fall apart completely 4. Then you bury it in the ground B. (15:35-38) - How are the dead raised? 1. Paul compares our bodies to seeds a. A seed in the ground dies, but it is not the end b. New life springs from the seed 2. (v39-47) Paul illustrates that there are various kids of bodies 3. Our resurrection body will be different. a. Paul contrasts our natural body with resurrection body b. New body - imperishable, glorious, powerful, spiritual c. No need for hair pieces, false teeth, or glasses C. ILL: Used to visit a cemetery regularly with a couple of friends 1. We found it to be the most peaceful place 2. I think cemetery is not full of death, but is full of life 3. Cemetery is a garden. Many seeds planted 4. Jesus will bring spring, and will bring new life D. Jesus is the first fruits, those that belong to him will resurrect to eternal life 1. (15:51-53) - We will have new bodies 2. Where will that body spend eternity? 3. Have you obeyed the Gospel? III. Why a sermon on this? A. Understand the nature of our world 1. Satan is the god of this world, and world is in his power 2. World is a fallen world and will be destroyed 3. Satan uses the world to try and draw you away from God 4. You are not of this world any longer B. Consider how Jesus fought the battle 1. Jesus didn't fight to establish kingdom with violent power a. Didn't fight infidels or launch a holy war b. Peter wanted to, but Jesus corrected him c. Jesus had the ability to call 10,000 angels, but didn't 2. (1 Cor 15:54-55) - Jesus ironically fought battle through death a. Phil 2:7-8 - Emptied self, obedient to the point of death b. Jesus won through - obedient faith, - servanthood - sacrifice - preaching the Gospel c. This is how he wants us to fight the battle 3. Jesus already determine the outcome of the battle - But we must fight it his way C. Jesus' goal is not to subdue unbelievers, but to transform them 1. Will not happen through coercive power 2. Can only happen through transforming power of the Gospel a. Gospel needs to be SEEN in our faith and servanthood b. Gospel need to be TAUGHT with our mouths Concl: 1. Have you obeyed the Gospel? (Invitation) 2. Are you fighting the battle, or have you gone AWOL? ======================================== Small Group Questions: How Jesus Wages Warfare Summary: The most significant event in history is the death, burial and resurrection of Christ because in this he defeated death and gives the hope of eternal life in a new, imperishable body. Understanding of this is important because it is the foundation of our faith and gives us the correct worldview, which informs us on the nature of spiritual warfare as Jesus fought it. Open: - What is the most weird theory you have heard about what happens to someone when they die? Explore (1 Cor 15:20-55) 1. What points does Paul make in comparing Adam and Christ? What does this have to do with the resurrection? 2. What kid of existence or body will we have after Christ comes? Will we be ghosts, disembodies spirits, or what? How does Paul characterize our current selves with our resurrection selves? 3. According to this study, what is significant about Christ's resurrection? 4. Some passages characterize Jesus' death, burial and resurrection in terms of a battle (Read: 1 Cor 15:54-55; Col. 2:15; Phil 2:7-8). How does the way Christ fights his battle and exercises authority run counter to the worldly conceptions of battle and power? Apply: 5. How does the way Christ fought his battles affect the way you should fight spiritual battles? (Consider Jesus' attitude toward other people, toward possessions, toward the world, and toward God) 6. How should this lessen about the resurrection affect your attitudes toward your possessions? Your relationships? Your goals? The world in general? 7. How should this affect your attitude toward the Gospel (1 Cor 15:1-4) and your role in it? 8. What do you find challenging in this lesson? What changes need to take place in your life? Prayer: 1 Cor 15:57-58 Reminder: Don't forget to mark on your calendar the We Care Training Clinic. Sep 20-24th.