Scriptures: 1 Corinthians 15:14, Exodus 15:20-21, Psalms 66, 2 Samuel 6:14, 2 Samuel 6:15, Matthew 15:30-31, Mark 1:27, Luke 19:6, Psalms 122:1, Proverbs 14:14, Matthew 13:44, Matthew 28:7-8
We have come here today because we have something to celebrate and be excited about. It's resurrection day. It's the most exciting day of Christianity. It's the day that gives meaning to all the other days of the Bible talks about. It makes Christmas make sense. It makes the crucifixion make sense. It makes all the things that the prophets said make sense. It makes what happened in the garden with Adam and Eve make sense. It's the day that the serpent's head was crushed. It's the day when all the promises of the Bible given to you and me were guaranteed. It's the day that will make your life make sense. It's the day that gives us the ASSURANCE that our faith is not worthless.
(NLT) 1 Corinthians 15:14 And if he is still dead, then all our preaching is useless and your trust in God is empty, worthless, hopeless;
I tell you every week that God has a great plan for your life. I tell you every week that God wants you live an abundant life. I tell you that he wants to bless you in every way possible. The reason that I can tell you that is because Jesus is alive. God raised him from the dead. That is THE EXCITEMENT OF CHRISTIANITY.
THIS DAY SETS WHAT WE BELIEVE APART FOR ANY OTHER BELIEF IN THE WORLD. When we study other religions, we see them anything but exciting. The leaders of the other religions are dead. Buddha is dead. Mohammed is dead. Judaism is still waiting on Christ. They have nothing to be excited about. But our God is alive and our Lord and Savior is alive.
God wants you to be excited about your life. He wants you to have a life that you can brag about. Life should be enthusiastic for the child of God.
(NLT) Romans 12:11 Never be lazy in your work, but serve the Lord enthusiastically.
God wants us to have an enthusiasm about life. We serve a risen savior. Nothing, not even death could stop him and nothing can stop you.
GOD LIKES HIS CHILDREN TO BE ENTHUSIASTIC AND EXCITED ABOUT LIFE. Remember when the children of Israel came out of Egypt and passed through the Red Sea? That Sea that saved them also destroyed their enemies. They were a bunch of turned on folks. Moses and Miriam began singing and the people began dancing.
Exodus 15:20 Then Miriam the prophetess, Aaron's sister, took a tambourine in her hand, and all the women followed her, with tambourines and dancing.
Exodus 15:21 Miriam sang to them: "Sing to the LORD, for he is highly exalted. The horse and its rider he has hurled into the sea."
God loves his children to be enthusiastic and excited about what he does. Can you imagine how excited they must have been when that sea opened for them and then closed upon their enemies?
(TLB) Psalms 66 He made a dry road through the sea for them. They went across on foot. What excitement and joy there was that day!
Has God ever done something like that for you? It seemed that something was about to take you out, but then God moved miraculously and delivered you. I remember one time in this ministry when it was as if Pharaoh and his army were on one side and the Red Sea on the other. There was no place to go when suddenly God opened the Red Sea and we passed on dry land.
GOD WAS ALWAYS DOING EXCITING THINGS in the lives of his people. We could talk about Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Joshua, Sampson, Gideon, and whomever. Every time you turn a page you read of a new adventure. Even the "begats" were exciting to those who were "begitting."
There was a time when God made a man named David king of Israel. David had a passionate love for God. The Bible says that he was a man after God's own heart. In other words, David made God's heart happy. One of the ways David did that was by keeping things exciting. He was a man after God's own heart. David liked to kill giants and Philistines, but what David wanted was exciting worship and praise for his God. David didn't enjoy traditional worship. He wanted lots of loud instruments and drums and singers and dancing. He didn't want to sing the traditional songs. He wanted to write his own songs that sang of his personal relationship with God.
However, over forty years before David became king, the Ark of the Covenant had been taken from the people of God. The Ark represented the presence and the power of God. The ark was beautiful. It was made of gold and was engraved. It had two golden cherubim on the golden mercy seat. David wanted it back, but not hidden in the back of a tabernacle. David wanted everyone in his town to experience God's wonder. So, David went to get the ark and brought it into Jerusalem. There he placed it in the tabernacle of David where David and anyone else could come and celebrate with excitement the joy of the Lord. David stirred things up as he brought the ark into Jerusalem.
2 Samuel 6:14 David, wearing a linen ephod, danced before the LORD with all his might,
2 Samuel 6:15 while he and the entire house of Israel brought up the ark of the LORD with shouts and the sound of trumpets.
Sometimes we need to take off all that stuff that we think makes us so special and get excited about God. David's excitement was so contagious that everyone began rejoicing and dancing. The ark of the covenant of God was back with God's people. God's presence had been resurrected. David showed everyone that God is an exciting God and that God enjoys our being excited about him.
I want to encourage you today to be excited about life and be excited about God. His ark – presence – now dwells in your heart. You are the temple. You are the tabernacle. That's THE EXCITEMENT OF CHRISTIANITY!
ONE OF THE MOST EXCITING THINGS FATHER GOD EVER DID WAS SEND HIS SON, JESUS TO THE WORLD. Jesus was just like his father. Jesus made life exciting. Every place he went things began happening. He made life good. He made parties fun. Even sinners wanted to hang with him because he made life exciting. One day people began bringing sick and lame people to Jesus.
(TLB) Matthew 15:30 And a vast crowd brought him their lame, blind, maimed, and those who couldn't speak, and many others, and laid them before Jesus, and he healed them all.
Matthew 15:31 What a spectacle it was! Those who hadn't been able to say a word before were talking excitedly, and those with missing arms and legs had new ones; the crippled were walking and jumping around, and those who had been blind were gazing about them! The crowds just marveled, and praised the God of Israel.
How many of us really believe that there has been a time when God touched us, or our child, or someone for whom we were praying? That's exciting! Christianity is exciting. He wants to heal people in their body, soul, and spirit. He wants to open your eyes so that you will have vision into the unknown. He wants to give you limbs to run after and reach that dream. He wants to deliver you from the bondages that keep you from enjoying life. That's THE EXCITEMENT OF CHRISTIANITY.
Jesus went to church one day and a demon came to church too. The demon was in a man and Jesus cast the demon out of the man.
Mark 1:27 Amazement gripped the audience and they began discussing what had happened. "What sort of new religion is this?" they asked excitedly. "Why, even evil spirits obey his orders!"
How about someone you know? Do you know someone addicted to drugs, or alcohol, or maybe pornography? Maybe you know someone who has an anger problem. Jesus can deliver them. If you are a Christ follower, then you have been delivered form something. There is nothing that can hold us in bondage if we are a Christ follower. That's exciting. CHRISTIANITY IS EXCITING.
One day Jesus was walking along and saw a man up in a tree. The man's name was Zacchaeus. Jesus stopped, looked up into the tree, and had a conversation with Zacchaeus. Zacchaeus simply sat in the tree. Jesus told Zacchaeus to come down from the tree. Jesus wanted to go to Zacchaeus' house.
(TLB) Luke 19:6 Zacchaeus hurriedly climbed down and took Jesus to his house in great excitement and joy.
No matter where you are when Jesus passes by your life, he will stop, talk with you, and make life exciting for you. Many of us find ourselves up a tree, or up a creek when Jesus comes by. However, if you will, he will go home with you and make your life exciting.
HOW ABOUT CHURCH? Should church be exciting? David wrote about that.
Psalms 122:1 I rejoiced with those who said to me, "Let us go to the house of the LORD."
In other words, he got excited about going to church. It was a fun thing. It was something he looked forward to doing.
One Sunday in church Sunday a child about three years old was turning around smiling at everyone. You have seen that child. The child wasn't talking or crying. He wasn't misbehaving. He was just smiling at everyone behind him. Suddenly his mother jerked him around, and in a loud whisper that everyone could hear, said, "Stop that grinning. You're in church." With that she gave him a slap on his leg, and as the tears rolled down his cheeks she added, "That's better."
That's often the attitude about church. Many people do not think we should smile in church. To them, church should not be fun. It's not that way for me. Church is exciting. It was for David and it was for Jesus. Church should be a fun place in which we truly rejoice when we come.
I know that many think that being a Christian and serving God is boring, but that's not how it is supposed to be. Jesus is not boring. Father God is not boring. Every time you turn the page of your life there should be a new adventure and a new blessing.
Proverbs 14:14 The backslider gets bored with himself; the godly man's life is exciting.
Being a Christ follower was never intended to be boring. In fact, a boring church will produce backsliders. It's the people away from God that live boring lives. Church and the kingdom of God should be exciting and fun. My life is exciting. How about yours? That is THE EXCITEMENT OF CHRISTIANITY!
Jesus said that when we find the kingdom that life should become exciting.
(NLT) Matthew 13:44 "The Kingdom of Heaven is like a treasure that a man discovered hidden in a field. In his excitement, he hid it again and sold everything he owned to get enough money to buy the field – and to get the treasure, too!
Religion is boring, but the kingdom is an exciting treasure that we find. It excites our hearts and makes us happy.CHRISTIANITY IS EXCITING.
Of all the exciting things that happened in the Old Testament and all the exciting things that happened in the New Testament, there was one day that God truly showed out. He did something that he had never done before. It was so exciting that it changed history forever.
Jesus had been beaten, scourged, crucified, and pierced with a spear to insure his death. On Sunday, Mary Magdalene and another Mary went early to the tomb where Jesus had been placed. As they arrived at the tomb, an earthquake happened. Then an angle walked up to them and rolled the stone from the entrance of the tomb. The angle then told them that Jesus was not there. They could look if they like. The angel gave them a message. They were to tell the disciples that Jesus had been raised from the dead just as he said he would be.
Matthew 28:7 And now, go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and that he is going to Galilee to meet them there.That is my message to them."
Matthew 28:8 The women, deep in wonder and full of joy, lost no time in leaving the tomb. They ran to tell the disciples.
God had raised Jesus from the dead! THAT IS WHAT MAKES CHRISTIANITY EXCITING. That is the uniqueness of our faith! The Old Testament miracles were marvelous. The New Testament miracles were even better. But on resurrection day, everything changed. It added an excitement unlike anything else. It changed history and it changed my life and your life forever. Death could not hold the Lord of Life.
I want to encourage you today. Be excited and enthusiastic about life. Our Lord and Leader is not dead. God raised him. That made all the promises "Yes and Amen." God will open Red Seas for you. Be excited when he does. Be like David and get excited about praise and worship to our God. Jesus will heal you body, soul, and spirit. He will deliver you from any bondage. Serving the Lord is not boring. It's boring not to serve the Lord. No matter where you are when Jesus passes by, he will talk with you and get you excited. When you truly find the kingdom, life is exciting. It's resurrection Sunday. CHRISTIANITY IS EXCITING!