The Power Of His Resurrection

Philippians

The Power Of His Resurrection

June 2nd, 1957 @ 7:30 PM

Philippians 3:10

That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;
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THE POWER OF HIS RESURRECTION

Dr.  W.  A.  Criswell

Philippians 3:7-11

6-2-57    7:30 p. m. 

 

 

Now tonight, I had planned to preach on the citizenship we have in heaven but I just got halfway through the message this morning so I decided to finish it tonight.  This morning: "that we might win Christ" [Philippians 3:8], "that we might know Him" [Philippians 3:10].  And tonight the rest of it: "and the power of His resurrection" [Philippians 3:10].  So I want to preach tonight on The Power of His Resurrection

Now, you turn to the third chapter of Philippians, and let’s read this passage together.  The third chapter of Philippians, and we shall read from the seventh through the eleventh verses: Philippians, the third chapter – almost toward the end of your Bible, the letter of Paul to the church at Philippi – the third chapter and reading from seven to eleven.  And I say my subject is The Power of the Resurrection, and you’ll see it as we read the text.  Now let’s all of us read it together – Philippians 3:7-11.  Together: 

 

But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. 

Yea doubtless and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ

And be found in Him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith;

That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being made conformable unto His death,

If, by any means, I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead. 

 

Now you see my text: "All of these things that were gains to me" [Philippians 3:7] – his nationality, his privilege, his place, his opportunity.  Paul was the brightest star that ever appeared on the horizon of Jewish rabbinical schooling [Philippians 3:4-6].  He was a star in Gamaliel’s seminary [Acts 22:3].  He apparently, almost assuredly – though a young man – was a member of the Jewish Sanhedrin.  He was a bright and shining light.  It’s almost impossible for us to realize the pride, the glory, in which a Jew, especially in that day, looked upon his place in the nation and in the whole economy of God.  He said, "All of those things gladly did I give up, that I might win Christ, that I might be found in Him . . . that I might know Him and the power of His resurrection" [Philippians 3:8-10]. 

There was only one thing that Paul desired to have and that was the Lord Jesus Christ.  There was only one thing that Paul desired to be and that was to be identified, to be lost in the Lord: to die with the Lord, die to the world; to be raised with the Lord, raised in newness of resurrection life; to ascend with the Lord, to be glorified with the Lord, to be at home with the Lord.  There was nothing that Paul desired to know but the Lord Jesus Christ – Him first: "that I might know Him and the power of His resurrection" [Philippians 3:10] first to know the Lord. 

All knowledge aside from Christ is extraneous, peripheral, trivial.  All the things that a man might learn or might know without God and aside from God are in themselves just nothing [Colossians 2:2-3].  For a man to study doctrine and theology and not know the Lord is like worshipping at an empty tomb, but with Christ it’s like bowing before the King on His throne.  For a man to learn science and knowledge and to be taught and learnedand leave God outis to have knowledge that is dark and ominous and foreboding.  First to know Him: "that I may know Him" [Philippians 3:10], and then "the power of His resurrection" [Philippians 3:10] which is my text and my message tonight: The Power of The Resurrection of Jesus Our Lord

It is first an authenticating power.  The resurrection of our Lord is an attestation.  It is a seal upon the document.  The resurrection of our Lord is the great and tremendous sign that He is all that He said He was and is able to do all that He promised to do.  He is marked out as the Messiah, the Christ of God, by the resurrection from the dead. 

In Romans 1:4, Paul writes, "He was declared to be the Son of God with power, by the resurrection from the dead."   The word he uses there is horizo, "horizon" – marked out where the sky meets the earth and the earth meets the sky: the horizon, the marked out meeting place.  That’s the word he uses when he says, "Declared to be" – marked out to be, horizo: declared to be, shown to be, evidenced, attested "the Son of God."  How?  "By the resurrection from the dead." 

When the caballing Pharisees asked Jesus for a sign that He was the Son of God, the Messiah, He said:

 

No sign shall be given to a faithless and unbelieving generation but the sign of the prophet Jonah. 

As he was in the heart of the earth three days and three nights, so shall the Son of Man be in the heart of earth, then be resurrected from the dead. 

 [From Matthew 12:39-40]

 

The sign of the person and Messiahship and deity and Sonship of Jesus Christ is His resurrection from the dead.  So certainly is that design of the deity and Messiahship of our Lord that if you take it away, the whole ministry of Christ falls to the ground.  The keystone in the arch of the deity and ministry of the Son of God is the power of His resurrection.  This is the attestation that He was what He said he was and He’s able to do what He declared Himself able to do [John 2:18-21; Acts 17:31]. 

The resurrection of Christ from the dead is a demonstration of the power of God and the moving, quickening presence of God like the very creation itself.  The same power that could raise from the dead Jesus Christ is the same power that created this world in the universe, and the same power that created this world and this universe is the same power that raised Jesus Christ from the dead [Genesis 1:31; Ephesians 1:19-21].  One would be as possible for a man as the other [Job 38:1-41:34]. 

If a man could create a star, he has the power of God.  If a man can raise another from the dead, he has the power of God.  The demonstration of the resurrection of Jesus from the dead is a demonstration of the incomparable power of God.  Our Lord was raised from the dead by the power of the Father.  He, God, brought from the dead the great Shepherd of the sheep, Jesus Christ [Acts 4:10; Ephesians 1:19-20]. 

He was raised from the dead by the power of the Holy Spirit [Romans 8:11], but the Bible also presents Jesus Christ was raised from the dead by His own inherent power.  In the second chapter of the Gospel of John, Jesus says, "Destroy this Temple," this body, "and in three days I will raise it up" [John 2:19-21].  In the tenth chapter of the Gospel of John, Jesus says, "I have power to lay down My life, and I have power to take it again" [John 10:18]. 

Could you imagine a mere man going to the grave and saying, "I have power to raise, to rise, to live again from the dead?"  Of all things in this earth, nothing leaves a man so helpless as the corruption of his body: his mind is gone; his brain is dissolved; the skin falls from his hand; the very sinews and muscles turn back to dust.  This is the power of God [Genesis 3:19], and I say it is the authentication, it is the attestation that Jesus Christ is God the Messiah, the Son of God Himself [Psalm 16:10; Acts 2:27, 13:35]. 

The resurrection from the dead is also the authentication, the attestation, the receipt that He is able to pardon our sins in His blood – that our sins are forgiven in His death.  In the twenty-fifth verse of the fourth chapter of the Book of Romans, Paul writes, "Our Lord Jesus was delivered for our offenses, and He was raised for our justification" [Romans 4:25]. 

I have pondered over that text years and years.  "He was raised for our justification" [Romans 4:25], and the thing that bothered me as I tried to think it through was this.  It is my understanding that our sins are pardoned in the death of Christ, in the blood of Christ, in the cross of Christ [Matthew 26:28].  We are justified by the atonement of Christ.  We are made righteous because He paid the penalty for our sins [Romans 5:8, 6:23], and yet Paul says, "He was raised for our justification" [Romans 4:25]. 

How is it that if our sins are atoned for in the blood of Jesus and if we are justified by the sacrifice of Christ, then how is it Paul could say we are justified by His resurrection?  This week I got an answer, and to me, it is as clear and livid and plain as it can be.  And I pray now that God shall make me able to make it clear and plain and lucid to you. 

God says, "The soul that sins shall die" [Ezekiel 18:4].  Sin requires the gift of life: life for sin.  Where sin is, life must be expiated – must be given, must be sacrificed – and there is no turning aside from that doom:

 

The man that sins shall die [Ezekiel 18:20]. 

In the day that you eat thereof thou shalt surely die [Genesis 2:17]. 

The wages of sin is death [Romans 6:23]. 

 

God linked that chain.  God welded it together, and no man can separate it.  Sin and death: the two are bound together by the inexorable law of an almighty God.  Now, we are delivered because Christ is our substitute.  Christ died in our place [2 Corinthians 5:21].  All of the penalty of our sin fell upon Him [1 John 2:2].  He, in His cross and in His suffering – in His death and in His wounds and in His blood – He paid the penalty for our sins [Colossians 2:13-14], and He died in our place, our substitute [1 Peter 2:24]. 

Now, when our Lord died, He died for us, not for Himself [1 John 3:5]."The man that sins must die" [Ezekiel 18:4, 20].  Jesus didn’t sin.  Death had no dominion upon Him [1 Peter 2:21-22].  Death had no bounds upon Him; death had no hold upon Him; death had no right with Him; death had no dominion over Him [Acts 2:24].  When Christ died, He died substitutionarily: He died for you [Romans 5:8].  He died in your place, not for Himself [1 Peter 3:18].  Our Lord Jesus was never subject to death because He never sins [Hebrews 4:15].  He died in your steads; He died for us [2 Corinthians 5:15].  Therefore, death had no dominion over Him.  He was free [John 10:18]. 

So when our Lord died on the cross, our sins were atoned for; our sins were paid [Isaiah 43:25; Hebrews 10:14-18].  When Christ bowed His head and cried, "It is finished" [John 19:30], the task was done.  In His blood, in His cross, all of our sins were expiated.  The sacrifice [was] made, and we were free [Galatians 5:1].  And when that was done, our Lord could immediately have ascended into heaven.  His work was finished, so there was nothing more to do.  Having done this sacrifice for us, He could have immediately ascended to the right hand of God.  Why didn’t He do it?

He was buried in this earth and He rose the third day [1 Corinthians 15:3-4] as an attestation, as an authentication, as a sign, as a receipt that our sins had been atoned for.  The resurrection of the dead was the open announcement, the open authentication, the open attestation that in His death he had forever washed our sins away and we are forever delivered from the penalty of our sins in Christ.  And the resurrection is an open sign, an open announcement, that Christ hath done that [Romans 4:25; 1 Corinthians 15:17]. 

And the reason why it was done by the resurrection was, had He not been raised from the dead, His death would have atoned for our sins just the same, but I would not have known it.  You would not have known it.  The justification came – the great announcement of it – the great attestation of it came through the resurrection from the dead.  Now may I illustrate that?  In the second chapter of the Gospel of Mark:

 

There was brought to Jesus a man borne of four. 

And the Lord looked upon him said, "Son, thy sins be forgiven thee." 

And they who heard him said,"He blasphemes.  Who can forgive sins but God?"

And the Lord said, "Which is easier to say, ‘Thy sins be forgiven thee’ or to say, ‘Arise, take up thy bed, and walk?’"

 [From Mark 2:3-9]

 

You might try it.  Try forgiving a man’s sins.  Or this dear blessed woman there: walk over there to her and say to her, "Get up and walk."  Try it.  For you to forgive her sins would be just about as easy as for you to walk over there to her and say, "Get up and walk," and especially had she been borne all the days of her life an invalid and in a wheelchair.  Just try it.  So Jesus said:

 

"In order that you may know that the Son of God hath power on earth to forgive sins, –

then the parenthesis –

(then said He unto the paralytic,) I say unto thee, ‘Arise, take up thy bed, and walk.  ‘" 

And the paralytic arose, and took up his bed and walked. 

 [From Mark 2:10-11]

 

It was a sign that the Son of Man on earth had power to forgive sins. 

So is the resurrection from the dead.  The sign, the authentication that Jesus Christ atoned for our sins in His death on the cross is this: that He rose from the dead!  That’s the reason Paul said: "He was delivered for our offenses, and He was raised for our justification." [Romans 4:25]  The great authentication that the blood of Jesus Christ is the power of God to expiate sins is this: that He was raised from the dead. 

Now that tremendous power of the resurrection of Jesus Christ is the great quickening power that lies back of the preaching of the gospel of the Son of God.  When Simon Peter and his fellow disciple [John] stood before the Sanhedrin and they had commanded them to shut their mouths and to cease their testifying [Acts 4:18], Simon Peter said, "But we cannot but testify.  We cannot but witness what we have seen with our own eyes and heard with our own ears" [from Acts 4:20]. 

The resurrection of Jesus Christ was by many infallible proofs dedicated, given, proved to the disciples [Acts 1:3], and became itself an infallible proof of the gospel of the Son of God [Romans 1:4]; and it is so with us today.  We do not stand in any pulpit, or on any street corner, or in any vacant lot, or on any mission field, or wherever a man stands to preach the gospel of the Son of God – we do not stand there preaching cunningly devised tales [2 Peter 1:16], but we stand there preaching the truth and the reality of the almighty God. 

This resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ is the attestation to all of the great doctrines of the gospel of Jesus.  The justification of our souls, the justification of our life, the making of us righteous in the sight of God is not a figment of the mere fancy and imagination of a man, but it is the experience of one who has placed his faith in the Lord.  This thing of the adoption into the children of God [Romans 8:15; Galatians 4:5; Ephesians 1:5] is not a fictional fiat, but it is an experience of life – a true sonship before God. 

And the blessings of the gospel are not theological opinions.  They are daily the experience of those who have followed the Lord, and who believe in Him, and who trust in Him with their souls and with their lives.  Jesus Christ was a real man in His life.  Jesus Christ was a real man in His death.  Jesus Christ was a real man in His resurrection, and He had the marks of the resurrection in His body.  All of the wounds on the cross are the scars in His body that He bears in heaven today [John 20:19-28].  There is a reality and a truth of the preaching of the gospel of the Son of God that is authenticated and attested by the resurrection from the dead: the power of His resurrection. 

Now Paul had in mind mostly not the objective power of His resurrection though he had that in his mind when he said it – and I’ve just spoken of the objective power of His resurrection – but Paul had mostly in mind when he wrote this – he had mostly in mind the power of His resurrection in a man’s heart, in a man’s life."That I might know Him, and the power of His resurrection" [Philippians 3:10] – the power of that resurrection upon me, upon the human heart and soul. 

Now what is that power?  It is first a soul-quickening power.  Jesus said, "I am the resurrection and the life" [John 11:25].  We are not to say, "I believe in Jesus and desire life."  Jesus is life itself [John 14:6].  When I have Jesus, I have life [1 John 5:11-12].  When I have Jesus, I have resurrection, and the power of His resurrection is a life-quickening power that reaches down to your heart, to my heart, to your soul, and to my soul. 

It is the same thing as the sun when it goes over the line from its winter solstice.  The trees hear and feel his coming, and they bud and leaf and come to life.  The flowers that are in the heart of the earth come and smile at his appearing.  The very seeds that have lain dead and dormant in the ground awaken and arise to welcome the coming of the warmth, and glory, and beauty of the sun.  It’s springtime, then it’s summertime with the fruits of these that have been called from death by the presence of the sun. 

It is the same power when Jesus comes into the hearts and souls of the lives of men.  He has quickened myriads, and He is quickening myriads more.  His coming is felt.  You have felt it.  I have felt it.  It’s the power, the life-giving, quickening power of the living Son of God. 

And that life, the power of His resurrection – the life-giving power that comes from the resurrection of our living Lord – is a new kind of life.  It’s a different kind of life.  It’s an eternal and a celestial life.  It’s a heavenly life.  This life that we now have is a kind of death.  It’s a sort of dying.  It’s a wasting away.  It’s a life of turmoil, and sickness, and illness, and aging, and finally dissolution and death; but the life that comes from the resurrection power of Jesus is a new kind of life – a supernal, celestial, heavenly kind of life. 

Jesus in His resurrection hardly touched the world.  The world was around Him, but He was almost oblivious to it.  Its pangs, and its sorrows, and its trials, and its tribulations touched Him not.  The oppressive cavelling, and blaspheming, and unbelieving of men touched Him not.  He was in the world in resurrection power, but He was above the world. 

So it is in our resurrection life.  This life that we now have is a natural life, and it tends in an altogether different direction.  It is a dying life.  But the life that comes in the power of Jesus Christ is an altogether different kind of a life.  It hardly touches the world.  It is not subject to the trial and tribulations of the world.  It is not a dying life. 

The first man is of the earth, earthly, the first Adam; but the second man is of the heaven, heavenly, the second Adam [1 Corinthians 15:47].  So the new life that we have in Christ: my body may perish, but my heart can rise and mount on wings like eagles [Isaiah 40:30-31; 2 Corinthians 4:16].  I may cry with pain, but my soul can exalt in the Lord [2 Corinthians 4:17-18].  I may be bound down with the weight and care of age, but my spirit can soar to the stars.  I may be a dying man in this life, but I can be a living man in the new life that comes in the power of the resurrection of Jesus Christ [Romans 5:3-5; 2 Corinthians 12:9-10]. 

And that leads to this third and last characterization of the power of the resurrection: "That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection" [Philippians 3:10].  I have said the power of His resurrection is an authenticating power.  It is a seal.  It is an attestation: This Man is God – raised from the dead – and all of the great doctrines are real and true [Acts 13:29-39].  They are authenticated by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.  I have said that the power of the resurrection is a life-giving power.  It is a life-quickening power.  It touches a man’s soul.  It makes a new creation out of him [2 Corinthians 5:17].  The old man may die, but the inner man is renewed forever. 

Now, this third thing: the power of the resurrection of our Lord is a consoling and a comforting power.  It is that because it has in it a promise to us who shall face, if He tarries, who shall face, if He delays His coming, who shall face an inevitable death and interment [Romans 5:12; Hebrews 9:27].  Shall it be on this hill or in that plain?  Just where shall that little plot of ground be into which this body is cast and turns back to the dust of the earth?  Then what?  Is our destiny to face the dark and the night of an inscrutable unknown future?  To be blotted out like a cloud?  To die like a brute forever forgot in the dust of the ground?  Is that the purpose of God’s creation in us?  Is it?

Oh, the Book says we’re not to sorrow as others: the infidel and the atheist and the unbeliever who have no hope! [1 Thessalonians 4:13]  Our Lord, the Bible says, is "the first fruits of them that believe" [1 Corinthians 15:20].  And we are then to be quickened by the Lord at His coming [1 Thessalonians 4:14-17]."  That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection . . .  if, by any means, I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead" [Philippians 3:10-11]. 

Now just for a moment of exegesis here: there’s only one place in the New Testament that this word is used here, and it’s in that text: "the power of his resurrection" [Philippians 3:10].  The Greek word for "resurrection" is anastasisanastasis, "resurrection."  The word Paul uses here is exanastasis [Philippians 3:11].  Then he repeats it again: "the power of His resurrection . . .  if I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead" [Philippians 3:10-11].  Then he repeats it again ek.  He says there: "tēn exanastasis tēn ek nekrōn" [Philippians 3:11].  Do you see the repetition of that word ekEk anastasis: it’s the only place you’ll find that compound noun in the Bible, exanastasis [Philippians 3:11].  Then he repeats it before nekrōn, "of the dead": ek nekrōn, "of, from among the dead." 

There are [other places] in the Bible that ek nekrōn is used and it always refers to a resurrection unto life. 

"The resurrection of the dead" – that phrase in Greek, in English, is a generic phrase.  It just refers to the fact of the resurrection from the dead, good and bad.  But what Paul says here is, "I press to know Christ.  I’ve forsaken everything that I might win Christ, if by any means I might attain unto the resurrection from among the dead" [from Philippians 3:10-11]; and he repeats that twice in that one text there: "the resurrection from among the dead."  And wherever that phrase is used in the New Testament, it refers to the resurrection unto life in Jesus Christ. 

What Paul is saying is, "I am not looking forward to a resurrection."  Man, Paul would say all of us are going to be resurrected from the dead: the evil and the vile and the iniquitous.  Every man shall be resurrected from the dead [Revelation 20:11-15].  Not that; not that.  But Paul says, "If by any means I, in Christ, might attain unto the resurrection from among the dead" [Philippians 3:11].  That’s the exact translation – "from among the dead" – and he’s talking about the resurrection to eternal life. 

There are two resurrections.  There is a resurrection to damnation, to perdition, to hell, to burning, to torment forever and ever.  "O Lazarus, that he might come and dip the tip of his finger in water; oh, that he might cool my tongue.  I’m tormented in this flame" [Luke 16:24].  There’s a resurrection to damnation [Revelation 20:11-15]. 

Paul says, "Oh, that I might have Christ: that I might be saved, that I might feel the power of His resurrection, that I might attain unto the resurrection from among the dead unto life eternal" [from Philippians 3:10-11]. 

My brother, how is it with you?  As you look to the day of that awful hour, are you going to be damned?  Are you going to be judged?  Are you going to fall into hell?  Are you going to be raised for fire and torment, or is it your prayer as the apostle Paul: "I’ve suffered the loss of all things . . . that I might have Christ . . . if by any means I might attain unto that resurrection from among the dead, unto life eternal" [From Philippians 3:8-11]?  Oh the dust that is in these cemeteries, heaped and crowded together!  But the same God that made the body in the first place [Genesis 2:7-8, 21-22; Psalm 139:13-14], that same God that created it in the beginning – that same God, by the power of the resurrection, is able to bring it from the dead and to sit us and place us in heavenly places in Jesus [Ephesians 2:6] or to be damned forever and forever [Revelation 20:15].  Oh Paul, that we might be with you of that turn to reach out after Christ if by any means we might attain unto the resurrection from the dead [Philippians 3:11]. 

Think what a comfort that is in the hour of pain, and persecution, and trouble, and tribulation.  Paul, for the sake of Jesus, was a prisoner [2 Timothy 1:8]: lost all that he had in this world [Philippians 3:8].  And right after his martyrdom, the cry in the amphitheaters was, "The Christians to the lions!"  And they’d take their bodies and cover them with pitch and set them afire and garishly, garously and crudely and inhumanely say, "They said, ‘We are the lights of the world.’  Ha, ha, watch them burn." 

What was the stay of those Christians?  If they found an early grave between the jaws of a lion, they would rise again [1 Thessalonians 4:16].  If their bodies were covered with pitch and the fires consumed their flesh, God would give them a new body [1 Corinthians 15:42-45, 52-53].  They would be glorified with the Lord.  That is to be our stay and our strength as we go through this veil of tears and face our final and inevitable hour: knowing the power of the resurrection of Christ. 

If my soul is bowed and my body is racked in pain, someday, I shall have a new body immortalized, glorified.  If I die, I shall live again [John 11:25].  If I am buried, I shall rise again [1 Thessalonians 4:16].  If I am defeated in this life, I shall reign with Christ [2 Timothy 2:12].  It is the power of the resurrection of our Lord. 

Have you given yourself to it?  Have you embraced it?  Have you reached out for it?  Have you taken it to your heart?  Have you received Jesus?  Do you know the Lord?  Have you openly confessed your faith in Him?  If God were to call you before the judgment seat tonight, are you prepared?  Are you ready?  Do you know the power of the resurrection?  Is there that assurance in your soul: "If we die with Him, we shall also live with Him; if we suffer with Him, we shall also reign with Him" [2 Timothy 2:11-12]? 

Do you have Christ?  Do you?  Have you opened your heart to the Lord?  Have you?  Have you found in Him a Savior?  Are you trusting His blood for the pardon of your sins?  Done with the self-righteousness, casting yourself upon the mercy and the righteousness of God [Philippians 3:9], is it right with you and the Lord?  Are you ready to die?  Do you believe in the resurrection from among the dead?  Are you persuaded you will be one in that glorious and matchless number?  Are you ready?  Are you saved?  Do you have Christ in your heart?  Is He yours?  Is He?

Oh, this blessed hour, this precious moment, when people are praying and when people are singing an appeal, when God’s people are near and the angels are watching.  If our loved ones like clouds of witnesses were looking down [Hebrews 12:1], is this night, would you give your heart to the Lord?  Would you accept Him as your Savior?

Into the aisle and down here to the front, "Pastor, tonight I give my heart to God.  I take Jesus as my Savior."   Into that aisle and down here to the front, would you come?  Would you come?  Is there somebody you who ought to put his life with us in the fellowship of the church?  Is there a family you who ought to come?  In that balcony, from side to side, in this great throng of people in God’s house tonight, does God call you?  Should this be your hour to come?  If the Spirit leads the way, into that aisle, down here to the front, would you make it now?  Would you make it now?  On the first stanza, on the first note of that first verse, into that aisle, and down here, "Here I am, preacher, tonight.  Tonight, I give my heart and life in faith and trust to Jesus my Lord, and I’ll do it now.  Here I come, and here I am."   While we stand and while we sing. 

THE POWER OF THE RESURRECTION

Dr. W. A. Criswell

Philippians 3:10

6-2-57

 

I.          Introduction

A.  All Paul desired to have, possess, was in Christ(Philippians 3:8)

1.  Gave up every advantage in birth, nationality, privilege

2.  Gave up his own legal righteousness

B.  All Paul desired to be was in Christ

1.  Dead to the world, to the law, to the old life and raised to a new life in Christ(Philippians 3:9, 11)

C.  All Paul desired to know was in Christ (Philippians 3:8, 10)

1.  Science, technology, discovery, a fearful thing without Christ

2.  Doctrine, ecclesiology, theology are empty tombs apart from Christ

D.  All Paul desired to experience was in Christ(Philippians 3:10)

 

II.         An authenticating power

A.  That He is the Messiah, the Son of God, the Savior of the world(Romans 1:4, Matthew 12:39-40)

1.  Without this authentication the mission of our Lord falls to the ground

2.  The miraculous display of God’s power in the resurrection of Christ

a. A work of the Father, the Holy Spirit and of Jesus Himself (Hebrews 13:20, John 2:19, 21, 10:18)

B.  That our sins are fully paid for, atoned(Romans 4:25)

1.  The soul that sins dies (Ezekiel 18:4, 20, Genesis 2:17, Romans 6:23)

2.  Jesus died our substitute, not for Himself

3.  When the sacrifice was made, our Lord could have immediately ascended – but the resurrection is a receipt that our sins had been atoned for

C.  Became the basis for the boldness of the apostles

1.  Supported by infallible proofs (Acts 4:20)

2.  This is our preaching today – a message of reality, truth (1 Corinthians 15:14-15, Luke 24:39)

 

III.        A quickening, life-giving power

A.  The main meaning of Paul – the power that touches, transforms life(John 10:18, 27)

1.  The sun to the world in spring

B.  This new life is celestial, heavenly, eternal

1.  Death has no more dominion

 

IV.       A consoling power

A.  The pledge of our resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:23, Philippians 3:11)

1.  Christ is never separated from His people – He is the head of the body

2.  Resurrection from among the dead, unto life in Jesus Christ

a. Two resurrections – one to damnation and hell or to life eternal (Luke 16:24)

B.  Our encouragement in trial, suffering(Philippians 3:8, Hebrews 11:40)

C.  Consolation for those who mourn(Isaiah 40:1-5)