This is an outline of a talk I gave at Willow Creek last night:
What Difference Does Easter Make?
We tend to be Good Friday in our gospel: Jesus died for us.
We tend to be Good Friday Christians too: my sins are forgiven.
What good is Easter? What difference does the resurrection make for life today?
The necessity and centrality of the resurrection, and we are incomplete in gospel and Christian life without the resurrection.
First three Christian sermons: Acts 2:36; 3:15; 4:10
Paul’s clear message: 1 Corinthians 15:17
Somewhere we lost contact with the centrality of resurrection and we have now too much of a Good Friday only gospel.
A Good Friday and Easter gospel that makes for a Good Friday and Easter Christian life.
The theme of tonight’s session then is this: Easter brings New Creation.
Frederick Buechner has said this beautifully: “Resurrection means the worst thing is never the last thing.”
If resurrection means new creation, what does it mean for us in our daily living?
1. We need to affirm daily that we are New Creation 2 Cor 5:17: “If anyone is in Christ, new creation! The old is gone, behold all things are new!”
2. New Creation means age-old boundaries are now demolished.Galatians 6:15 (see Gal 3:28)
3. New Creation means personal transformation Romans 12:1-2
4. New Creation means seeing beyond suffering 2 Corinthians 6:4-10.
5. New Creation means death is not the last word Matthew 27:51-53
6. New Creation living for the New Heavens and New Earth Rev 21—22