Watch the most recent sermon on 11.28.2021 Go Now!
Thank you for joining us for Easter! We had an amazing online experience with you, remembering the sacrifice and resurrection of Jesus! We went to the Lord together in worship and communion, we enjoyed a powerful and timely teaching, and we experienced a refreshing time of community as we had conversations on watch parties and live chats, prayed together, and built one another up.
We pray you enjoyed service this weekend as we celebrated the resurrection of Jesus Christ, the miracle which allows us to enjoy an abundant life today and an everlasting life in heaven!
Dive deeper into this teaching on your own, with your family, or in your online group! Watch the video below to see a recap of this weekend’s teaching. You can also scroll down to check out expanded notes and summaries from the teaching and get informed on some of the great resources available to you.
To watch the message in its entirety, click here.
Let’s recap some of the key talking points from Pastor Doug’s message this weekend:
What must it have been like for the disciples in the weeks leading up to the resurrection? Similar to coronavirus, the disciples had been warned that Good Friday was coming, that the Son of Man was going to “suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed” (Mark 8:31 NIV), but they couldn’t process it. They didn’t really understand it or even necessarily believe it or see how it could be possible. So when it came, they were shocked. But then, on Saturday . . . there was silence.
Luke 23:52–54 (NIV) says, “Going to Pilate, he asked for Jesus’ body. Then he took it down, wrapped it in linen cloth and placed it in a tomb cut in the rock, one in which no one had yet been laid. It was Preparation Day, and the Sabbath was about to begin.” What does this tell us? Well, it tells us that Jesus was buried immediately after He died. He was taken down from the cross, wrapped, and placed in the tomb. Why? Because the Sabbath was literally upon them. (Jesus died around 3pm, and the Sabbath was about to begin less than four hours later.) And though He was laid in a rich man’s tomb, Jesus wasn’t given a proper burial. Did you know the disciples couldn’t even hold a funeral for Jesus the next day because it was the Sabbath?
So, what do you imagine they did on that darkest of Saturdays? Did they sit together and talk about what He meant to them? Did they reminisce on how great He was? It’s possible. But notice that not one of the Gospel writers notes any activity or actions from the disciples at all on this day. After all they’d seen and gone through, it’s more likely they simply sat in silence much the same way that Job and his friends did (Job 2:11–13), distraught and inconsolable, wallowing in hopelessness, despair, fear, confusion, and anger. No doubt, it had to be the darkest and most empty day of their lives, and truly the darkest and most empty day in the history of the world. It was an entire day where grace, truth, peace, and love were buried; where hope was lost.
We may have experienced loss due to the coronavirus—graduation, job loss, retirement, etc.—and we need to take time to mourn those things. But just as the disciples sat in their loss for only a short time before the dawn of that bright and glorious Sunday morning when the resurrection came, we need to realize that Sunday is coming for us, too!
Mark 16:1–3 (NIV) tells us, “When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go to anoint Jesus’ body. Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb and they asked each other, ‘Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?’” The three women went to the tomb with spices for Jesus’ body, but they weren’t sure how they would move the stone, which weighed somewhere between one and two tons! Plus, it was guarded by Roman guards and the official seal of the government. The tomb had a triple lock.
You see, death is our ultimate barrier. There is a massive stone in the front door of death that separates us from God, from heaven, from life everlasting. Who can open that door? Without a miracle, without divine intervention, this is the end of story!
Think about the emotions surrounding the resurrection! First they were grieving, and then they were amazed. When the women arrived at the tomb, they saw an angel had moved the stone and he proclaimed that Jesus was no longer there! Sometimes, we ask questions that we don’t think are possible to be answered. “How will we move the stone?” But all things are possible with God.
“It is finished” was not the end of the story because the tomb could not hold Him back. On the third day, the stone was rolled away, and the Messiah rose again! And now, because of Jesus, death has become a house without a door! For the first time ever, death became optional through Christ because He conquered death.
In John 11:25 (NKJV, emphasis added), just a few weeks before this moment, Jesus told Lazarus’ sisters, Mary and Martha, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live.”
Jesus’ tombstone became a memorial to God’s power to not only save for eternity but also to satisfy for today. His death and resurrection give us life . . . eternal life (John 3:16) in heaven and true, full, rich, purposeful life here and now (Romans 8:11); a life of fulfillment (John 10:10).
Quote to Remember: God turned the stone into a trophy so I could live a resurrected life.—Pastor Doug Sauder
We hope you enjoyed our 21-day fast and Easter Bible reading plans. Now that those are finished, we have several other exciting plans available for you to subscribe to! From a reading plan to follow along with our “Miracles” series to a plan on experiencing peace, to a few great plans that explore the basics of Christianity, we have a variety of awesome resources for you to grow in your faith and study the Word of God.
To view our reading plans, click here.
As we continue to track the news and information about COVID-19 and its effects both worldwide and right here in our surrounding cities, this week we will continue to hold services ONLINE ONLY.
Join us online this Wednesday as we kick off our slate of online spring classes! These class experiences are designed to help you get to know Jesus on a deeper level and learn valuable and practical ways to experience the life God created you for. Check out our classes page today to sign up for your class.
Then on the weekend, we’ll continue our “Miracles” series as Pastor Chris Baselice from our Plantation campus shares a powerful and timely word on God’s power to heal as we look at John 5:1–15.
We look forward to spending another awesome week with you!
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Danny Saavedra is a licensed minister who has served on staff at Calvary since 2012, managing the Calvary Devotional and digital discipleship resources. He has a Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling and Master of Divinity in Pastoral Ministry from Liberty Theological Seminary. His wife Stephanie, son Jude, and daughter Zoe share a love of Star Wars, good food, having friends over for dinner, and studying the Word together as a family.