by James Merritt

A World without Easter
James Merritt
1 Corinthians 15:12-20


1. We just concluded one of the most exciting and interesting series I think we have ever done, ever, called ''24.'' It was a fascinating study of the story of the last 24 hours in the life of Christ set in a 21st century setting to the format of the tv show ''24.'' Even though it made for a great story, great drama, great intrigue, and great mystery, nothing in that series would still tell you what is so distinct and what is so different about Christianity.

2. Why is it that Christians, who truly understand their faith, dogmatically assert that Christianity cannot be lumped in with any other religion in the world? In fact, why is it that a Christian who understands true Christianity, dogmatically asserts that Christianity is not even a religion?

3. The reason is what makes Christianity so different and so distinctive is not just the teaching of Jesus Christ or the life of Jesus Christ or even the death of Jesus Christ. What makes Christianity so different is (if you think about it) a simple moment in time - maybe even less than a moment. Maybe even a period of time that can't even be measured, because what happened in that infinitesimally small period of time was something that had never happened before and has never happened since - a resurrection from the dead. I know in the bible several people were raised from the dead, but they were raised in the same body that died to begin with and eventually they died all over again. When Jesus Christ was raised from the dead he was raised in an incorruptible, immortal, eternal, heavenly body that can never again die.

4. On that Easter Sunday morning, 2000 years ago, when two ladies, both named Mary, went to the tomb of Jesus to finish the embalming process on his body, the stone covering the tomb had been rolled away and an angel was sitting on top of that very stone. This is what he said to them in the most immortal words ever ut ...

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