Dear Faith Family,
Let us explore together this Easter morning one of the most vivid resurrection appearances of Jesus. It is the afternoon of the same day as the empty tomb. Two disciples are walking home, sad and downcast. They have been in Jerusalem when all the events surrounding the crucifixion of Jesus took place. It is the third day. Jesus’ body is missing from the grave. A stranger approaches them on their walk. They are in for the greatest Bible study ever, and they don’t even recognize their teacher. Let’s join together to experience the truth of God’s Word and a “walk to remember.”
Our text is Luke 24:1-35.
New for this week: Pastor Chad Sadorf has been including a series of Children’s Messages, based on the I Am statements of Jesus found in the Gospel of John. This week’s lesson is provided as a video; this link appears just after the Gloria Patri in the service (where it would normally occur in our church service). Click on these links for a printable coloring page and a children’s bulletin to accompany this message: Coloring Page, Children’s Bulletin.
Service for Family Worship:
The Lord is risen!
The Lord is risen indeed!
Call to Worship: from Psalm 51:15-17
O Lord, open my lips, and my mouth will declare your praise. You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise!
Lord, you have been our dwelling place in all generations. Before the mountains were brought forth, or you had formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God. Teach us, Lord, to count our days that we may gain a wise heart. Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, so that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.
Bless now your people as they gather together in the spirit of fellowship and worship, though separate, we are united in Christ – One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism. Receive now our praise, our prayers, and our offerings of worship. Through Christ, our Lord. Amen.
Scripture Reading: Nehemiah 9:29-30
29 And you warned them in order to turn them back to your law. Yet they acted presumptuously and did not obey your commandments, but sinned against your rules, which if a person does them, he shall live by them, and they turned a stubborn shoulder and stiffened their neck and would not obey. 30 Many years you bore with them and warned them by your Spirit through your prophets. Yet they would not give ear. Therefore you gave them into the hand of the peoples of the lands.
Most holy and merciful God, we confess to you and to one another, that we have sinned by our own fault in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done and by what we have left undone.
We have not loved you with our whole heart and mind and strength. We have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We have not forgiven others as we have been forgiven.
Have mercy on us, O God. We have not listened to your call to serve as Christ served us. We have not been true to the mind of Christ. We have grieved your Holy Spirit.
We confess to you, O God, all our past unfaithfulness: the pride, hypocrisy, and impatience in our lives.
Help us to see our own frustration and our envy of those more fortunate than ourselves.
We see in light of your perfect truth, our love of worldly goods and comforts and our dishonesty in daily life and work.
We confess our negligence in prayer and worship and our failure to commend the faith that is in us to others.
Accept our repentance, O God, for our sins and transgressions. For our neglect of human need and suffering and our indifference to injustice and cruelty, accept our repentance for the totality of our sins. Help us to change our ways, to desire that which is good, love what you love, and do what you command, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Assurance of Pardon:
Nevertheless, in your great mercies you did not make an end of them or forsake them, for you are a gracious and merciful God.
Based on 2 Corinthians 5:17-18
If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation. Receive the good news of the gospel: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven.
Affirmation of Faith: The Chalcedon Creed
We, then, following the holy fathers, all with one consent teach men to confess one and the same Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, the same perfect in Godhead and also perfect in manhood; truly God and truly man, of a rational soul and body; co-essential with the Father according to the Godhead, and consubstantial with us according to the manhood; in all things like unto us, without sin; begotten before all ages of the Father according to the Godhead, and in these latter days, for us and for our salvation, born of the Virgin Mary, the mother of God, according to the manhood; one and the same Christ, Son, Lord, Only-begotten, to be acknowledged in two natures, without confusion, without change, without division, without separation; the distinction of natures being by no means taken away by the union, but rather the property of each nature being preserved, and concurring in one person and one subsistence, not parted or divided into two persons, but one and the same Son, and only begotten, God the Word, the Lord Jesus Christ; as the prophets from the beginning have declared concerning Him, and the Lord Jesus Christ Himself has taught us, and the creed of the holy fathers has handed down to us.
I Am the Resurrection and the Life (Click here for a link to the video of the Children’s Message)
(You may want to take a moment to pray with your child or children for your family, your church family, our country and world.)
God’s tithes and offerings are a sign of our larger commitment to serve him in the world. Ours is a life of total stewardship—time, talents, financial resources and abilities. Let’s take this opportunity to minister the love of Christ to our neighbors and friends.
Online giving is now available for your convenience. This link, https://www.faithpresarp.org/give/, will take you to the page that explains this process and includes a button which will redirect you to the secured giving platform.
Pastoral Prayer: (Click here for the Pastoral Prayer)
Sermon: A Walk to Remember (Click here to listen to the sermon)
Luke 24:1-35 (Focus is 13-35)
I. Jesus opened the Scriptures
II. Jesus opened eyes and hearts
Benediction (Click here to hear this week’s benediction)
Questions for Further Discussion
- These two knew much about Jesus, possibly walked with him, were taught by him, perhaps witnessed the crucifixion while in Jerusalem, so what does it say about Jesus’ power – that he was able in verse 16 “to keep them from recognizing him”?
- What one Old Testament title is missing from the description that is given of Jesus of Nazareth in verse 19? (See verse 26)
- A cornerstone of Biblical theology and redemptive history is taught here. (Pair verses 27 and 32 and relate it to how and what we teach and preach here at Faith Presbyterian Church and our Reformed faith)
- Why is it a foundational practice of our church to preach the “whole counsel of Scripture”? What does that mean for you the listener each Sunday – just like it meant for these two men on the road to Emmaus?
- In verse 34, we have the core message of Easter, Jesus did die on the cross for our sins, but we must not leave him on the cross – the tomb is empty and this means what for our future hope?
Lesson 3: I Am the Resurrection and the Life
For the past several weeks, we have been learning about the seven I AM statements Jesus made, which are recorded in the book of John. Each time Jesus says “I AM,” he is saying that he is God. Each I AM statement also reveals to us a new part of Jesus’ character. It tells us a little more about who Jesus is. We have learned that he is the Bread of Life, and fills up all our spiritual needs.
Easter morning is the perfect time to remember the truth of this “I am” saying of Jesus. When Jesus says “I am the resurrection and the life,” he is saying he has the power over death, so we can live forever with him, and he has power over life, so we can be happy and do good things with him and for him, and with each other and for each other – now and forever.
Scripture Passage: John 11:1-45 New International Version (NIV)
Now a man named Lazarus was sick. He was from Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. 2 (This Mary, whose brother Lazarus now lay sick, was the same one who poured perfume on the Lord and wiped his feet with her hair.) 3 So the sisters sent word to Jesus, “Lord, the one you love is sick.”
4 When he heard this, Jesus said, “This sickness will not end in death. No, it is for God’s glory so that God’s Son may be glorified through it.” 5 Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. 6 So when he heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed where he was two more days, 7 and then he said to his disciples, “Let us go back to Judea.”
8 “But Rabbi,” they said, “a short while ago the Jews there tried to stone you, and yet you are going back?”
9 Jesus answered, “Are there not twelve hours of daylight? Anyone who walks in the daytime will not stumble, for they see by this world’s light. 10 It is when a person walks at night that they stumble, for they have no light.”
11 After he had said this, he went on to tell them, “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep; but I am going there to wake him up.”
12 His disciples replied, “Lord, if he sleeps, he will get better.” 13 Jesus had been speaking of his death, but his disciples thought he meant natural sleep.
14 So then he told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead, 15 and for your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.”
16 Then Thomas (also known as Didymus[a]) said to the rest of the disciples, “Let us also go, that we may die with him.”
17 On his arrival, Jesus found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb for four days. 18 Now Bethany was less than two miles[b] from Jerusalem, 19 and many Jews had come to Martha and Mary to comfort them in the loss of their brother. 20 When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went out to meet him, but Mary stayed at home.
21 “Lord,” Martha said to Jesus, “if you had been here, my brother would not have died. 22 But I know that even now God will give you whatever you ask.”
23 Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.”
24 Martha answered, “I know he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.”
25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; 26 and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?”
27 “Yes, Lord,” she replied, “I believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, who is to come into the world.”
28 After she had said this, she went back and called her sister Mary aside. “The Teacher is here,” she said, “and is asking for you.” 29 When Mary heard this, she got up quickly and went to him. 30 Now Jesus had not yet entered the village, but was still at the place where Martha had met him. 31 When the Jews who had been with Mary in the house, comforting her, noticed how quickly she got up and went out, they followed her, supposing she was going to the tomb to mourn there.
32 When Mary reached the place where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet and said, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.”
33 When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come along with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled. 34 “Where have you laid him?” he asked.
“Come and see, Lord,” they replied.
35 Jesus wept.
36 Then the Jews said, “See how he loved him!”
37 But some of them said, “Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from dying?”
38 Jesus, once more deeply moved, came to the tomb. It was a cave with a stone laid across the entrance. 39 “Take away the stone,” he said.
“But, Lord,” said Martha, the sister of the dead man, “by this time there is a bad odor, for he has been there four days.”
40 Then Jesus said, “Did I not tell you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?”
41 So they took away the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. 42 I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me.”
43 When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” 44 The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face.
Jesus said to them, “Take off the grave clothes and let him go.”
45 Therefore many of the Jews who had come to visit Mary, and had seen what Jesus did, believed in him.