Okay Luke twenty-four verse one. It says, on the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb. But when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them.
In their fright, the women bowed down with their faces to the ground. But the man said to them, why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here, he is risen. Remember how he told you while he was still with you in Galilee? The son of man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified, and on the third day be raised again. Then they remembered his words. When they came back from the tomb, they told all these things to the eleven and to all the others.
It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James and the others with them who told this to the apostles. But they did not believe the women because their words seemed to them like nonsense. Peter, however, got up and ran to the tomb, bending over, he saw the strips of linen lying by themselves and he went away wondering to himself, what had happened? So, here we have this camaraderie of women who had the task to complete. Um they need to complete the burial rituals of Jesus and it was kind of hastily done his burial so they a little late to the party and they’re coming a few days after to kind of prepare with this funeral spices and you would have to imagine how deflated in themselves they potentially would be. Because Jesus was their saviour.
He was their hope. He was the one who was going to free them from the oppression of the government. They were had all of their hopes and dreams pinned on him. And now he lies dead in the tomb. And their vision and their hope and their dreams lie dead in that tomb too.
And they’re making their way to that tomb to finish the burial rituals that they need to do with those spices. And then what? And now what? Where do we go from here? And they make their way to the tomb. And as they get there, they notice that the stone is rolled away. And you’d have one or two thoughts going through your mind, right? First is, how on earth did they move the stone? Who moved the stone, right? Because actually that stone, it’s not like a little piddly thing, like it wasn’t like a cardboard cut out that you just knock over. It actually weighed one to 2 tons.
And it was in this kind of channel. So you kind of had to push it uphill to get it up. So it took a lot of effort. So when they came, and they saw that initially, they would think, well, who did that? You saved us from having to do that but then, the question rises of, where’s Jesus? Where’s the body? And you would kind of go through the who, what, where, of it to try and put together what had happened there.
The who would be, would it have been grave robbers that came and stole his body? But that wasn’t possible because it was under Roman guard and it wouldn’t have been good for the government if the Jesus’s body was taken. Then, there’s the what so maybe some animals had gotten into the tomb and taken the body. But there was a very very heavy stone in front of it. And I don’t know about you. Kangaroos look quite intimidating and I don’t think they were around back then in that area.
But they’re not strong enough to push it right? And then the where? Maybe we’ve come across the wrong tomb. Maybe we’ve got to the wrong tomb. But this was exactly where they were supposed to be. And so they are standing there and they’re wondering what on earth has happened. They had a saviour. They had a mission.
They had hope, and now they have an empty tomb. And they don’t know what to do with that. And then the angels appeared to them. And they basically say to them do you remember what was told to you? So it’s almost like a revelation and a rebuke in the same kind of sentence. The same kind of phrase.
Saying hey you remember these words. These were spoken to you. This actually shouldn’t come as a shock. And so then they remembered. And these women had this joy and also this fear of God and just of what he can do.
And so they run back to the apostles disciples to tell them the great news. And if anyone should have remembered this, it would have been them, right? They would have heard countless times and we see countless times in the New Testament hearing that Jesus relayed, this is going to happen. I am going to come back. I’m going to face oppression. I’m going to leave you guys and they don’t remember it.
But Peter, out of all of them, hears it and he stood up and he stood up out of that crowd of people who thought it was nonsense. Absolute nonsense. And he ran towards the tomb. May our hearts run towards the tomb right now. May our hearts be turned towards God that we know there is a God of possibility.
There is a God who can reshape our lives. If only we believe and step out of our circumstances and run towards him. This is I’ve actually called this message. This changes everything. This changes everything.
This moment in history which maybe you read about in a history book. Maybe you heard it in Sunday school when you were growing up. But I want to challenge you. This is something that shapes every single one of our lives. That this moment changed everything.
That God continues to change everything in our lives. If only we would allow ourselves to be a part of his story. If only we would allow ourselves to see ourselves in the story of what he’s doing. Amen? Amen. Front row with me.
Amen? Amen. Amen. Can I just say we have a nickname for this campus? The other campuses don’t have nicknames. We have a nickname for our campus. It’s Rowdy Creek.
Woohoo. We are Rowdy Creek. We get riled up and up about the things of God. Because we love our Lord. And I can’t help but shout.
I can’t help but sing. I can’t help but lift the roof because I’m so excited for what he’s done. And this changes everything. Hey Rowdy Creek. You with me? That’s good.
Well I you know why I believe this changes everything for multiple many reasons is you know I’ve grown up in church from the kind of the age of 13 and I’ll get a little bit into my backstory a little later in the message. Um but across my time of in church. I have seen people healed. I have seen people experience miracles. I have seen marriages which were too far gone suddenly resurrected.
I’ve seen people who are waiting on a word from God suddenly get it. I have seen him change people’s lives. This gospel is a life-changing gospel. And it can change you if you would allow it. So the first thing I want to talk about is this changes wonder.
This changes wonder. Now, currently, I am actually on my own right now. My wife and kids are in Mount Isa. They went to visit Jess’s side of the family. I wanted to be here for Easter because I’ve not done a King’s Church Easter yet.
So, tick that one off the list. But it’s a little bit of an empty house right now. It’s a little quiet. It’s a little odd. I’m used to there being toys like thrown all over the floor and like fights between the kids and all this kind of good stuff.
So, my house is a little bit quiet in it. It reminded me of a time that happened a few years ago where our seemingly seemed a bit emptier than it should have been. Which was a regular Saturday night. Jess and I were getting ready for bed. And usually as we get ready for bed we will go check on the kids.
Make sure they’re good. They’re asleep. They’re settled before we go to sleep. And so that night I decided I would go do it. And I walk out to the living room which is on the way to the kid’s bedrooms.
And I noticed the sliding door that leads to the backyard is just wide open. And I go huh. That’s a bit odd. And then as I’m making my way towards the kids’ rooms, I notice these wet footprints coming from outside from the sliding door kind of moving towards the kids’ bedrooms and I’m a little bit more alarmed now. I’m a bit like, huh Okay.
So, I go and look in Cooper’s room. Cooper’s fast asleep. I go and look in the girls’ room because the girls were kind of sharing a room and I see Maya fast asleep in her bed but Riley’s not in her bed and I go, oh, what’s happening here? So, I raced back to Jess and I say, Jess, Riley’s not in her bed. The back door is wide open and there are wet footprints leading inside. Like, the the parental like safety bells are going off in my mind.
So, Jess and I leap up and now where she’s inspecting it because she doesn’t trust me. She’s like, So she’d like flip open the bed. Did you really look? Was she really in there? Did you look under the covers? You know, and so, she’s not there and so now, we’re kind of like walking out around the backyard, looking around. I’m looking out the front yard. We kind of meet back together in the living room and we’re like, have you seen her? Have you seen her? No.
And then, on the couch right next to us as we’re talking, Riley pops her head up and goes, what are you guys talking about? And I was like, you. It turned out Riley had actually slept, walked outside, like opened the door walked outside into the wet grass, walked back in and stomped her wet footprints through the house and then decided to crash on the couch. So I was thankful to have a full house. Does any parent relate to me with that? Right? Kids are such a joy. The problem is we had all this information but we didn’t have revelation.
We were wondering but we didn’t have all the pieces. Yeah. This what we see with the women. It says that when they came upon the scene, they were wondering what had happened. And actually the word wandering translates to the word which means to be without resources, to be in straits, to be left wanting, to not know which way to turn.
The women were in the scene and they didn’t have the resources to be able to properly process what they were seeing. You can imagine them wandering between each other having a back and forth trying to strategise what’s going on but they didn’t know. The women had spices but they didn’t have revelation. And now what they were holding onto was irrelevant to the scene that was unfolding in front of them. We still hold irrelevant spices to this day.
We still hold things that we think are going to give us answers or give us what we want. You know there what Jesus did what he accomplished by dying and rising again. We could not possibly even comprehend how earth an amazing and incredible that is. And yet there are people who go about their lives thinking that they don’t have to engage with Jesus. They don’t have to engage with the church.
They don’t have to engage with God. They’re good enough. That there’s some measure of goodness we have. Just as human beings that if I reach that benchmark then I’ll be allowed into the gates of heaven. I’ll be allowed into his presence.
It’s like if a neighbour came up to me who I’d never met before and said hey I’ve been doing mowing on odds of the street. I’ve been giving to charity. I’ve been doing all this stuff. Can I come in your house? And what will we say? No. I don’t know you.
I’ve got no relationship with you. I’ve got no connection to you. I don’t even know what you’re going to do when you get in my house. Like, are you going to turn the place upside down? I don’t know. Um so, we closed the door and that’s similar to with God.
God wants relationship with you. He doesn’t actually want your goodness because our goodness isn’t good enough and thankfully, he sent Jesus to die on the cross for us that we would be. He would be our goodness. He would be our righteousness and that’s how we receive it. Are you with me? Let’s not live according to our standards, our measures, our goodness, all of those things are irrelevant.
They’re like funeral spices. They don’t relate to the scene that is unfolding before us. You know, I’ve even spoken about how when I was six or seven years old, I stole a teenage mutant ninja toy turtle. Yeah. I know.
You didn’t know your pastor was living a life of crime before he got here, right? There was some promotion or something at one of the fuel stations where if you spend enough money on fuel, you’d get this little teenage mutant ninja toy little toy and I’m going to trip over saying that a few times. Um you get that and my never my parents never went to that fuel station which bugged me so much and then I came upon at the school one day, one of the kids there had put the toy on top of their bag and so while he was out playing, I stole it. Yeah. And the funny thing was later that day, I came home and I kind of hid it from my parents, you know, and living a life of crime. And I asked them because I was just curious.
I said, hey, you guys grew up in church. What happens when you steal? Like, how does God feel about that? And they didn’t pick up on it. Apparently, I was really subtle. And my parents said, not realizing this was going to emotionally scar me. They said, oh, you go to hell.
And I went, okay And then just kind of went to my room and I cried. Because I thought, oh no, I’ve condemned myself to hell over this like Leonardo Michelangelo toy. And so I went to school the next day and I made sure I put it in that kid’s bag and I was like, oh, you’re missing toy. Wow. Where did that come from? This is incredible.
But I knew, I knew that I, there was some distance between me and God. I knew there was something that like a chasm that I couldn’t bridge. And as I was growing up. There was this hungering desire to somehow cross that chasm. And I didn’t know how.
I even would pray to God every night. And there’s this prayer that I heard from a movie which was ah what is it? I pray the Lord my soul to keep if I should die before I wake I pray the Lord my soul to take or something. I heard it in a horror movie. And I would pray that every night. Because I just desperately wanted God and I knew my goodness wasn’t enough.
And so when I was 13 years old I was sat between two Christians in history class who bugged me about Jesus. And one of them invited me to their youth night where it was a bush night, a bonfire night. And I went to it and I tested the leaders all night saying how do I become a Christian? How do I do it? And they said come to church tomorrow at the very end of the sermon. The pastor will ask you to put up your hand if you want to be a Christian. And you do that.
And I said that’s great. Can we do that now? Can we do that now? And they were like, oh no, no, we’ll do it tomorrow and finally, after two hours of me working hard for that salvation, some of you did not work hard for your salvation. You just turn up to church, stick up your hands. I had to wear them down. They let me in the sinner’s prayer and I gave my life to Jesus and I never looked back.
Amen? Amen. Whoo. Everything within me ran to that opportunity. Ran to that opportunity because I was so in awe of God and I wanted him and I needed him and I didn’t know how to make it right. And I didn’t have the resources to make it right.
But I found myself in a position when I had the opportunity I ran towards that opportunity. You know Christians in this room do you still run to the presence of God? Does your heart still leap at the news that you’ve been rescued and saved? Do you still have the resources in those dark moments where you’re in a deep valley where you know that you are going to make it through because have the Lord on your side. That he is with you. You know Luke twenty-four ends with Peter wondering what had happened. We begin with the women wondering what had happened but we end with Peter wondering what had happened.
But this was a different kind of wonder. This was not a wonder that lacked resources to comprehend. We get it from the word Dalmazzo which means to be astonished, admire, and marvel. So we start with the women not knowing what is going on and being confused and alone wondering what is happening to ending with him just being so astonished. And in admiration and marvelling at the goodness of God.
He may not have the information on where Jesus physically is but he knows God did something. Amen? You know in Psalm eight verse one it says Lord our Lord how majestic is your name in all the earth? You have set your glory in the heavens through the praise of children and infants you have established a stronghold against your enemies. To silence the foe and the avenger. When I consider your heavens the work of your fingers the moon and the stars which you have set in place. What is mankind that you mindful of them.
Human beings that you care for them. We serve a God who cares for us. We serve a God who considers us. And it’s something that we shouldn’t take lightly but actually be in awe of. Be astonished, admire and marvel at.
That a God who is arguably could be wasting his time on us is deciding to waste his time on us. Again and again and again. We fail. We come up short. We don’t have the resources and yet he consistently chooses us.
Are you with me? So what kind of wonder do we have today? Because God wants to change your wonder. If you’re someone who is wondering what happened to your life. Wondering what’s going on. You don’t have the resources. You don’t know which way to turn.
He wants to transform it to a wonder that is an astonishment of the goodness of God. Marvelling at his faithfulness. Marvelling at his grace and his mercy that he pours out on us. That’s the wonder he wants to change for you and he can do that. Because of what he accomplished at the cross.
Amen. Amen. The second thing and I’ve only got two points this morning and then we’re going to baptise some people. Is this changes eternity? This changes eternity. After this service, we are going to do a massive Easter egg hunt and I warned the congregation last week that you are not allowed to run off with your kids.
You need your kids to collect those Easter eggs. Because there is an insane amount of Easter eggs there. And us as a staff will have to eat it. If you don’t get your kids to take it okay? And I’ve been good. I’ve been really good.
I’ve been going to the gym. I’ve been eating healthy. Don’t slip this up for me, congregation, okay? Yes, thank you. But Easter egg hunts are fun. You know, the kids have great time and they’re good on the Gold Coast but I grew up in Mount Isa where Easter egg hunts, there is a small window of time where you can do it.
Because Mount Isa, the temperatures get up to like 40 degrees. I got married outside in 43° heat. I was sweating like nothing else. So, doing a chocolate Easter egg hunt in that weather, there is a very short window of time where those kids can get those eggs and they’re fine to eat, okay? Cuz you put them around everywhere and you scatter them and you hide them and the kids will run out and they’ll get all the eggs but there’s always those eggs that are left behind in the field or wherever you’re hiding and you have to kind of scoop around to get them and when you pick them up, they’re just smooshy and they’re dripping. They’re going everywhere.
Who knows what I’m talking about? Who’s done an Easter egg hunt and you find like a week or two later an egg in your backyard and you’re like, nope, that’s going in the bin. You with me? Yeah. You know, the last time we heard of Peter, he probably felt a little bit like that. Um because Peter had denied Jesus repeatedly. This was the guy who was supposed to come alongside Jesus.
He was supposed to be the rock, you know? And he’s the one who denied Jesus a few times and we end with him weeping bitterly. Weeping bitterly. There such sorrow and remorse because he knows he’s done the wrong thing by God. He knows he’s done the wrong thing by Jesus. And he’s just left in this awkward place.
The poor guy. And for him he’d probably be thinking that’s it. I’m done. That was my window. That was my window of time.
Where I could have really proven myself and shown myself to be a faithful follower and I lost it and I missed it and it’s done. You know in Mark sixteen verse seven which is kind of a different retelling of it. Um it says this and this was directed to the women. But tell his disciples and Peter. He’s going ahead of you into Galilee.
There you will see him just as he told you. So when the disciples were told and the apostles and everything, there was this collective shrug. They thought it was all nonsense, right? But I tell you what, Peter would have just been so chuffed and so excited and so over the moon that the window didn’t close. That actually he should’ve in if he didn’t have that little bit of information, he would have separated himself from them. That when the women came and would give relaying the news, he’d be like, well, that’s not for me.
Not included in that. But the fact that he was specifically named and known and called out that this news is for you too. You’ve not missed your window. You’ve not missed that window of time. That he has a good word for you.
Amen? He got up and he ran. He’s like I’m not going to stay with these people who are talking about nonsense. I’m not going to stay with these people who are arguing amongst themselves. Something in my spirit is going to rise up and I’m going to take that invitation. Because I’m going to act on that knowledge.
Peter got up. You know in second Corinthians five verse twenty-one it says For our sake, he made him to be sin who knew no sins, that in him we might become the righteousness of God. In Romans five verse eight, it says, but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. While Peter was still weeping bitterly, God was at work for his good. While we are going through hardship and hard times and difficulty, God is behind the scenes doing good.
He is in in your circumstances, in the stillness of your circumstances where it feels like nothing is progressing and nothing is moving forward. There is a God who loves you so much that he is intervening on your behalf. He is lining things up for you to come to know him and know his power and his goodness in a beautiful way. I can speak many times in my life of the faithfulness of God. Of the times where I felt so still.
Where I felt like I’m stuck in this window of time and I don’t know how to get out it but god came and intervened in my life. Amen? And he’ll intervene in yours. Let’s remember Jesus changed everything. He changed the rules. Thankfully, we don’t have to do big animal sacrifices anymore.
We don’t have an assembly line of that happening in this place. That’s old school now. He was the perfect unblemished sacrifice for us and so we have a new day and a new dawn in him. Are you with me, church? God doesn’t want to leave us at our stillness. He wants us to run this morning.
If you’re a Christian in this place, he wants you to run with a zeal and a passion for his name. With what he puts in your hand, he wants you to run with it. If you’re someone who’s come in this place, who’s never known what it is to follow Jesus, never known what it is to walk alongside him. Guess what? He wants you to run to him too. That you’re invited in that as well.
I want everyone to close your eyes and bow your heads this morning. I don’t know everyone’s story in this place I don’t know what you’re currently going through. I don’t know your history. But you know what? All of that is irrelevant. God loves you so much and desires to have relationship with you.
And when we speak of the fact that Jesus died on the cross, it wasn’t for the person, it was for the person next to you. But it was also for you. It was also for you. He did that so that no matter what our goodness is, no matter our measures, no matter what we think, could get us over the line. It’s irrelevant.
Jesus paid the price for us. So in this on Easter Sunday as we remember the resurrection of Jesus and all that he’s accomplished. I want to invite you to make your life right with him. Whether you’re someone who has been a Christian for a while and noone would know that behind the scenes, there is no relationship there. That you’ve neglected him, you’ve forgotten about him, you’re walking in your own strength, and when you say you’re a Christian, it feels fake.
It feels disingenuous. Because you know you’re not living right with him. Or maybe you’re someone who’s been brought into this place. Someone brought you along today or invited you or you came with your own accord and you’ve never known what it is to follow Jesus. And there’s something that just sparks a curiosity within you of could I? Should I? Will I? And I want to give you the chance to make things right with him.
So you can embark on one of the best decisions you will ever make in your life. So if you have been a Christian and you know you need to make a right with him this morning or you’ve never been a Christian and this morning you want to make that decision. All I ask in this room with every head bowed, every eye closed, noone can see. All I ask is that you stick your hand up and put it down again. I’ll see it and we’re going to pray together.
Does anyone want to make a decision for Jesus this morning? Yep, I see that hand. That’s amazing.
There’s hands across this room And we’re going to pray today. We love this as a church. This is one of our favorite parts of the services. People coming back to the house of God. Coming to relationship with him.
And what we do is I want the people who put up their hands to repeat this prayer. But I want everyone as a congregation, as a church, as a family, for us to repeat it with them, to support them. Are you ready church? Oh, okay. You’re not ready. Are you ready church? Yes.
Let’s say this prayer, Jesus. I thank you for this life. I turn from living life my own way and I turn to you This morning, I am a Christian. Christ is alive in me. The old is dead and gone.
And the new is born. And I thank you for in Jesus name. And everyone said, with a faith-filled cheer, everyone said, amen.