Easter According to the Apostles’ Creed (Part 8)

The Apostles' Creed

The Apostles' Creed

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Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message #164

TEXT: 1 Corinthians 15:1-4

During this series, as we have been working our way through the Apostles’ Creed, we have read 1 Corinthians 15:1-4 because it is a succinct statement about the Gospel and how it should impact our lives. These verses define what the Gospel is, what it can do, and what we ought to do in response.

First, this passage tells us that the Gospel is the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. That is the “good news” that Paul delivered to the Corinthians and that has been delivered to each of us today. That good news is like bringing a jug of cold water to a man who has been tied to a stake in the ground in the desert for a week without anything to eat or drink. I’m glad, today, that somebody took the time to tell me about the good news.

Second, this passage shows us that the Gospel is what saves us. The Corinthian believers were “saved” by the Gospel. Everyone who is a child of God was saved by this Gospel as well. We were not saved by our own ingenuity, strength, or intelligence. We did not work for it or pay for it. We had nothing to do with our salvation. It is all of the Gospel and the grace of God.

Third, this passage shows us how we should respond to the Gospel. The Corinthian believers “received” the Gospel, “stood” in the Gospel, and were commanded to “remember” the Gospel. Receiving the Gospel is an act of our will by which we place our faith and trust in Jesus Christ and the saving work that He accomplished on the cross. Just as we receive the Gospel, there are many people who have, unfortunately, rejected the Gospel and chosen their own path. After we have received the Gospel, we ought to “stand” in the Gospel. To “stand” in the Gospel is to live by the Gospel. It is another way of saying that we should live like we are saved. If we are saved, we ought to act like we are saved — we ought to put off the old man and put on the new man, which is Christ Jesus, so we can “walk in newness of life.” We can do this if we “keep in memory” the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. This great event ought to be first and foremost in our hearts and minds. That is why we celebrate communion — in remembrance of Him. That is why we celebrate Easter — to remember the death, burial, and resurrection of our Lord.

That being said, we are continuing with the final message in this series as we look at the Biblical basis for the statement of faith known as the Apostles’ Creed. The Old Roman Form of the Apostles’ Creed reads as follows:

I believe in God, the Father Almighty; and in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was born by the Holy Spirit of the Virgin Mary, who under Pontius Pilate was crucified, and buried. On the third day rose again from the dead. He ascended into Heaven and sits at the right hand of the Father. From thence he will come to judge the living and the dead. And in the Holy Spirit, the holy Church, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, the life everlasting. Amen.

1. We see the fulfillment of forgiveness. Psalm 32:1 says, “Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered.” Sin is the problem that has plagued mankind since the beginning of time. God, in His grace and mercy, decided not to destroy us immediately, but to do everything in His power to draw us back to Himself. But, since God is just and holy, sin has to be paid for.

2. We see the promise of the resurrection. In John 5:28-29, Jesus Christ said, “Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.” Just as Jesus Christ was physically raised from the dead, everyone will be physically raised from the dead one day. We often emphasize that death is not the end for someone’s spirit, but the Bible teaches that death is not the end for our bodies either.

3. We see the assurance of eternal life. In John 10:28, Jesus Christ said, “I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.” With so much uncertainty in the world, isn’t it wonderful to have this assurance? We may not be able to say that we are certain about much in our temporal lives, but we can say that we are certain about eternal life because the assurance of eternal life rests in Jesus Christ and Him alone.

This Easter, we rejoice because of the fulfillment of forgiveness and our being able to stand as innocent before God. We revel in the promise of the resurrection because Jesus Christ rose from the dead and has promised that we will rise as well. We rest in the assurance of eternal life, knowing that nothing can take away from us that which Jesus Christ lived, died, and rose from the dead in order to give us.

MUSICAL SELECTION: “Because He Lives” by David Crowder*Band and “We Won’t be Shaken” by Building 429

Easter According to the Apostles’ Creed (Part 7)

The Apostles' Creed

The Apostles' Creed

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TEXT: 1 Corinthians 15:1-4

Today, we are continuing with the seventh message in this series as we look at the Biblical basis for the statement of faith known as the Apostles’ Creed. The Old Roman Form of the Apostles’ Creed reads as follows:

I believe in God, the Father Almighty; and in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was born by the Holy Spirit of the Virgin Mary, who under Pontius Pilate was crucified, and buried. On the third day rose again from the dead. He ascended into Heaven and sits at the right hand of the Father. From thence he will come to judge the living and the dead. And in the Holy Spirit, the holy Church, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, the life everlasting. Amen.

Today, we are looking at the next three lines of the creed which read: I believe “in the Holy Spirit, [and in] the holy Church.” The most widely-used version of the creed adds: “in the communion of saints.” Notice three things from the biblical foundation for these beliefs.

1. We see the purpose of the Holy Spirit. Before Jesus Christ left this Earth, He told His disciples that He would send the Holy Spirit. In John 15:26, He said, “When the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me.”

2. We see the nature of the church. Closely tied to the influence of the Holy Spirit is the work of the church in the world. Galatians 3:26-28 says, “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.” The Greek word used in the New Testament for church is “ek-kle-sia”, which means “called-out ones.” The church is made up of those who have been called out of the world and into the family of God.

3. We see the fellowship of the saints. Not only is the church united with Christ, but Christians are united with each other through Christ. Hebrews 10:25 says, “Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.” As believers, we are blessed to be in fellowship with other like-minded individuals who have been washed in the blood of Christ.

Easter According to the Apostles’ Creed (Part 6)

The Apostles' Creed

The Apostles' Creed

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TEXT: 1 Corinthians 15:1-4

Today, we are continuing with the sixth message in this series as we look at the Biblical basis for the statement of faith known as the Apostles’ Creed.

The Old Roman Form of the Apostles’ Creed reads as follows:

I believe in God, the Father Almighty; and in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was born by the Holy Spirit of the Virgin Mary, who under Pontius Pilate was crucified, and buried. On the third day rose again from the dead. He ascended into Heaven and sits at the right hand of the Father. From thence he will come to judge the living and the dead. And in the Holy Spirit, the holy Church, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, the life everlasting. Amen.

Today, we are looking at the next two lines of the creed which read: He “sits at the right hand of the Father. From thence he will come to judge the living and the dead.” Notice three things from the biblical foundation for this belief.

1. We see the exaltation of Christ. Mark 16:19 says, “After the Lord had spoken unto [the disciples], he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God.” If you have ever wondered where Jesus Christ is right now, this verse provides the answer. After He finished the work which He was sent to do on Earth, He sat down on His throne at the right hand of God in Heaven.

2. We see the expectation of Christ’s return. After His ascension, two angels appeared to the disciples and said, “Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.”

3. We see the coming execution of Christ’s judgment. The Apostles’ Creed states that from Heaven, Jesus “will come to judge the living and the dead.” Paul wrote in Second Timothy 4:1 that “the Lord Jesus Christ shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom.” In John 5:22, Jesus Christ said, “the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son.”

The ascension of Jesus Christ is just as important as His coming, His death, and His resurrection. All of it is a part of God’s plan. Jesus’ exaltation reminds us that even now, He is King of kings and Lord of lords. The expectation of His coming gives us hope for the future. And his execution of judgment on Earth lets us know that He has everything under control, and that one day, His kingdom will fully come and His will will be fully done on Earth as it is in Heaven.

Easter According to the Apostles’ Creed (Part 5)

The Apostles' Creed

The Apostles' Creed

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TEXT: 1 Corinthians 15:1-4

Today, we are continuing with the fifth message in this series as we look at the Biblical basis for the statement of faith known as the Apostles’ Creed. Let’s begin by reading a newer version of the Apostles’ Creed.

The Old Roman Form of the Apostles’ Creed reads as follows:

I believe in God, the Father Almighty; and in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was born by the Holy Spirit of the Virgin Mary, who under Pontius Pilate was crucified, and buried. On the third day rose again from the dead. He ascended into Heaven and sits at the right hand of the Father. From thence he will come to judge the living and the dead. And in the Holy Spirit, the holy Church, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, the life everlasting. Amen.

Today, we are looking at the next two lines of the creed which reads: “On the third day he rose again from the dead, He ascended into Heaven.” The more recent version form of the creed adds just before that “He descended into hell.” Notice three things from the biblical foundation for this creed

1. We see the totality of Jesus’ death. Once again, we turn to I Corinthians 15:3 which tells us that “Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures.” What do we mean by the “totality” of Jesus’ death. Well, we mean simply that Jesus Christ really died. He did not swoon; He did not fake His death. He really, truly, undeniably died.

2. We see the necessity of Jesus’ resurrection. Just as Jesus had to die, Jesus had to rise from the dead. Look again at First Corinthians 15:4. The Bible says that “was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures.” The reliability of God the Father and Jesus Christ the Son is at stake. Jesus predicted that He would rise from the dead before He died. If He did not rise from the dead, then we are in a lot of trouble.

3. We see Jesus paving a way for us. The next clause in the Apostle’ Creed simply states, “He ascended into Heaven.” After His last discussion with His disciples on earth, Acts 1:9-10 tells us that “while they [Jesus' followers] beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. And they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up…”

Each of us today have to bear our cross like Jesus did. We must bear our cross all the way to the day we die. And one day, because of Jesus’ resurrection, we will make that majestic leap from the grave to the sky where we will live with Jesus Christ forever on high.

Easter According to the Apostles’ Creed (Part 4)

The Apostles' Creed

The Apostles' Creed

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Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message #165

TEXT: 1 Corinthians 15:1-4

Today, we are continuing with the fourth message in this series as we look at the Biblical basis for the statement of faith known as the Apostles’ Creed. Let’s begin by reading the Apostles’ Creed.

I believe in God, the Father Almighty, the Maker of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord:

Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried;

He descended into hell. The third day He arose again from the dead;

He ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Ghost; the holy church; the communion of saints; the forgiveness of sins; the resurrection of the body; and the life everlasting.

Amen.

The Old Roman Form of the Apostles Creed reads as follows:

I believe in God, the Father Almighty; and in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was born by the Holy Spirit of the Virgin Mary, who under Pontius Pilate was crucified, and buried. On the third day rose again from the dead. He ascended into Heaven and sits at the right hand of the Father. From thence he will come to judge the living and the dead. And in the Holy Spirit, the holy Church, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, the life everlasting. Amen.

Today, we are looking at the next line of the creed which reads: “…who under Pontius Pilate was crucified, and buried.” The longer form of the creed says Jesus “suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead and buried.” Notice three things from the biblical foundation for this belief.

1. We see the guiltiness of mankind. Luke 23:23-25 says, “And they were instant with loud voices, requiring that he might be crucified. And the voices of them and of the chief priests prevailed. And Pilate gave sentence that it should be as they required. And he released unto them him that for sedition and murder was cast into prison, whom they had desired; but he delivered Jesus to their will.”

2. We see the certainty of Christ’s death. In First Corinthians 15:3 Paul writes, “For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures.” The death of Christ is extremely important for the Christian faith. Death is the sentence that God laid down for sin. If Jesus Christ did not die, then He did not pay our sin debt.

3. We see the fulfillment of prophecy. Notice how Paul couches his statements concerning Jesus’ death and burial in First Corinthians. He says, “Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And he was buried, and he rose again the third day according to the scriptures.” Paul tells us that these things happened “according to the Scriptures.”

Man was guilty of sin. Jesus Christ came and had to die in order for us to be saved. By being born into this world, living a perfect life, and dying on the cross, Jesus fulfilled numerous prophecies concerning the Savior. This fulfillment of prophecy helped the Christians of the early church to know that they could have faith in God and trust Him for guidance and direction as they fulfilled Christ’s command to preach the gospel to every nation.

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