17 April 2015

Sunday School—The Resurrection

The Resurrection




A1 Objectives

B1 Describe what happened a Jesus's tomb after His death.

B2 Explain why Jesus's Resurrection was necessary to secure our redemption.

A2 Scriptures

B1 Matthew 28:1-10 The Resurrection and the first ones to the tomb.

B2 John 11:25-26 Jesus speaks of the importance of His resurrection to Martha.

B3 John 14:19 The effect of the resurrection on His followers.

B4 1 Peter 1:3-9 The promise of a future life.

A3 Notes

B1 For objective #1 see A5

B2 Necessity of the Resurrection

C1 Proof of Jesus character ("...who was declared Son of God with power according to the Spirit of holiness by the resurrection of the dead, Jesus Christ our Lord," (Romans 1:4, EMTV)

C2 Proof of atonement. ("And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless; you are still in your sins!" (1 Corinthians 15:17, EMTV)

C3 Proof of our resurrection

D1 "Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He that believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live." (John 11:25, EMTV)

D2 "Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received, and in which you stand, through which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Thereafter He appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, of whom the majority remain until now, but some have fallen asleep. Thereafter He appeared to James, then to all the apostles. And last of all, as of one born out of due time, He appeared to me also. For I am the least of the apostles, who am not worthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than them all, yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me. Therefore, whether it was I or they, so we preach and so you believed. Now if Christ is preached that He has been raised from the dead, how do some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ has not been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is vain and your faith also is vain! And we are found to be false witnesses of God, because we bore witness concerning God, that He raised Christ, whom He did not raise—if in fact the dead are not raised. For if the dead are not raised, then neither has Christ been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless; you are still in your sins! Then also those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in this life only we have hoped in Christ, we are to be pitied above all men." (1 Corinthians 15:1-19, EMTV)

C4 Proof of our justification ("Now it was not written for his sake alone that it was credited to him, but for us also, to whom it was going to be credited, those believing on Him who raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead, who was delivered up for our transgressions, and was raised for our justification."

(Romans 4:23-25, EMTV)

C5 Proof for preaching Gospel, that is, that it is truth. ("And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is vain and your faith also is vain! And we are found to be false witnesses of God, because we bore witness concerning God, that He raised Christ, whom He did not raise—if in fact the dead are not raised." (1 Corinthians 15:14-15, EMTV)

C6 Proof of our need for holiness. ("Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, so that just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection; knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, so that the body of sin may be done away with, that we should no longer serve sin. For he who has died has been justified from sin. But if we died with Christ, we believe that we also shall live together with Him, knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, no longer dies. Death is no longer master over Him. For what death He died, He died to sin once for all; but what life He lives, He lives to God. Likewise you also, consider yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord." (Romans 6:4-11, EMTV)

C7 Proof for our new body at our resurrection.

D1 "But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you." (Romans 8:11, EMTV)

D2 "For our citizenship exists in heaven, from which also we eagerly await for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body, that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subject all things to Himself." (Philippians 3:20-21, EMTV)

D3 "It is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body." (1 Corinthians 15:44, EMTV)

C8 Proof for our hope ("Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead," (1 Peter 1:3, EMTV)

C9 Proof of new life.

D1 "Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, so that just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we also should walk in newness of life." (Romans 6:4, EMTV)

D2 "having been buried together with Him in baptism, in which also you were raised together through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead" (Colossians 2:12, EMTV)

C10 Proof that Jesus is the Judge ("because He has appointed a day in which He is going to judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has appointed, having given proof to all, by raising Him from the dead." (Acts 17:31, EMTV)

B3 Jesus's sovereignty

"Arminian theology strongly affirms the sovereignty of God in all things. Arminian scholar Roger Olson writes,

"CLASSICAL Arminianism goes far beyond belief in general providence to include affirmation of God's intimate and direct involvement in every event of nature and history. The only thing the Arminian view of God's sovereignty necessarily excludes is God's authorship of sin and evil. Faithful followers of Arminius have always believed that God governs the entire universe and all of history. Nothing at all can happen without God's permission, and many things are specifically and directly controlled and caused by God. Even sin and evil do not escape God's providential governance in classical Arminian theology. God permits and limits them without willing or causing them."

The point of difference between Calvinism and Arminianism is the definition of sovereignty. On the Calvinistic view, sovereignty means meticulous control (i.e., theological determinism), while on the Arminian view, God's sovereignty necessarily means His complete freedom and authority (or right) to act any way He so wills. On this view, God certainly has the freedom and authority to exercise meticulous control over every minute detail (though the Arminian can't see how this doesn't necessitate God's authorship of sin), but He also has the freedom and authority to not exercise meticulous control. For the Arminian, if God chooses to not exercise meticulous control, that decision is itself a sovereign decision. As (Arminian) apologist J. P. Holding writes,

"SOME Calvinist commentators point to various passages of specific events such as the selling of Joseph into slavery (Gen. 45-50), the crucifixion of Christ (Acts 2:23), and the military actions of the Assyrians (Is. 10). And they are not wrong to do so. Yet one cannot falsely generalize from these particulars and assume that God chooses to exercise His right of sovereignty in the same way for things like the moving of a finger. Perhaps He does, but perhaps He does not; perhaps He does at some times, but not at others.

Yet to suggest such a thing hardly removes any sovereignty from God, for a simple reason that I have yet to see dealt with by a Calvinist commentator (though I may see it in the future): The decision to do nothing is itself a sovereign decision."

Thus, the Arminian concludes that even if God decides to do nothing in a given scenario, that decision is an exercise of, rather than an abdication of, His sovereignty. Arminian theologians Jerry Walls and Joseph Dongell write... Read the rest here

B4 Jesus's omnipotence

Only he that can do all things else cannot deny himself: He cannot counteract himself, or oppose his own work. Were it not for this, he would destroy all sin, with its attendant pain in a moment. He would abolish wickedness out of his whole creation, and suffer not trace of it remain. But in so doing he would counteract himself; he would altogether overturn his own work, and undo all that he has been doing since he created man upon the earth. For he created man in his own image: A spirit like himself; a spirit endued with understanding, with will or affections, and liberty; without which, neither his understanding nor his affections could have been of any use, neither would he have been capable either or vice or virtue. He could not be a moral agent, any more than a tree or a stone. If, therefore, God were thus to exert his power, there would certainly be no more vice; but it is equally certain, neither could there be any virtue in the world. Were human liberty taken away, men would be as incapable of virtue as stones. Therefore,(with reverence be it spoken,) the Almighty himself cannot do this thing. He cannot thus contradict himself, or undo what he has done. He cannot destroy out of the soul of man that image of himself wherein he make him: And without doing this, he cannot abolish sin and pain out of the world. But were it to be done, it would imply no wisdom at all; but barely a stroke of omnipotence. Whereas all the manifold wisdom of God (as well as all his power and goodness) is displayed in governing man as man; not as a stock or stone, but as an intelligent and free spirit, capable of choosing either good or evil. Herein appears the depth of the wisdom of God, in his adorable providence; in governing men, so as not to destroy either their understanding, will, or liberty. He commands all things, both in heaven and earth, to assist man in attaining the end of his being, in working out his won salvation, so far as it can be done without compulsion, without over-ruling his liberty. An attentive inquirer may easily discern, the whole frame of divine providence is so constituted as to afford man every possible help, in order to his doing good and eschewing evil, which can be done without turning man into a machine; without making him incapable of virtue or vice, reward or punishment. John Wesley On Divine Providence

A4 Questions

B1 Matthew 28:1-10

C1 Verse 1

D1 What day is this? (Sunday. It is the day after the Sabbath).

D2 What time of day is this? (At dawn break).

D3 How many hours since Jesus died? (Approximately 36 hours).

D4 Is this 3 days and nights? (Yes).

C2 Verse 2

D1 What caused the earthquake? (An angel came from heaven).

D2 Who rolled the stone away? (The angel)

C3 Verse 3

D1 How is the angel described?

D2 Does this sound like a witness to the events?

C4 Verse 4 What were the guards doing? (Fainted from fear)

C5 Verse 5

D1 What language did the angel speak? (Their language)

D2 How come the women didn't faint? Are women tougher than men?

D3 Why did the angel say, "Don't be afraid?"

D4 How did the angel know they were looking for Jesus?

C6 Verse 6

D1 The angel states, "He is not here." So where was he? (Stay tuned)

D2 What proof does the angel offer that Jesus is not there? (Come and see)

D3 Does Jesus keep His word? (He arose just as He said He would).

C7 Verse 7

D1 What does the angel tell the women to do? (Leave here and go tell the disciples)

D2 What are they to tell the disciples? (He is risen and go to meet Him in Galilee like He told you to do)

C8 Verse 8

D1 How fast did the women obey? (Fast they "quickly" left and "ran" to tell the disciples)

D2 What two emotions did the women have? (Fear and joy)

D3 What were they afraid of?

C9 Verse 9

D1 What did they see as they were running? (Jesus)

D2 What did Jesus say? (Rejoice) Why did He say this?

D3 Why did they hold His feet? (Bowing before Him and showing respect and submission)

C10 Verse 10

D1 What did Jesus tell them? (Don't be afraid).

D2 What were they to tell the disciples? (Go to Galilee)

B2 John 11:25-26

C1 What is the importance of the resurrection?

C2 What is the importance of believing Jesus?

C3 Is there hope for those who believe when they die?

C4 Is verse 26 a genuine offer to all people or only a few elite?

B3 John 14:19

C1 Who will see Jesus after He rises from the dead?

C2 Will we who believe live again?

C3 How does this happen?

B4 1 Peter 1:3-9

C1 Do we earn this "living hope"? (No, it is by His mercy)

C2 What is hope? (Faith is believing someone/something, hope is an expectant emotion)

C3 What are the four things about this inheritance that we are to receive? ("...incorruptible and undefiled and unfading, reserved in the heavens for you").

C4 Who or what guards our faith? (The power of God)

C5 When is our salvation to be revealed?

D1 At the last of time. This is the rapture.

D2 JFB commentary has "...the last day, closing the day of grace; the day of judgment, of redemption, of the restitution of all things, and of perdition of the ungodly."

D3 Some understand this to be when Jesus returns to earth (see 1 Peter 1:7), and others believe it to be the Day of Judgment.

C6 Does this knowledge help us in our day to day trials?

C7 What do trials accomplish in our lives? (May us for Christ-like in the same sense that gold is purified in fire).

C8 Did the people Peter writes to see Jesus? (Not in this life)

C9 Why do people believe? (God initiates salvation. Jesus has done all the work. We believe. It is related to humility. We can choose to believe or not believe).

C10 What kind of joy is this? (Great and glorious. Some understand this joy to have an effect on a believer, that is, an "unnatural" effect on us).

C11 What is the outcome of our faith? (Salvation)

C12 What is salvation? (Mercy and grace. Mercy in that we do not get what we deserve, and grace in that we receive this gift).

A5 Other notes

Resurrection--True or False


Did Jesus Christ rise from the dead or was it a vision?


Bart Ehrman, the famous apostate, atheist, deconverted Christian, holds that it was only a vision, so also others (for example Francis Maloney, "The Resurrection of the Messiah: A Narrative Commentary on the Resurrection Accounts in the Four Gospels" as reported by Kermit Zarley in his blog).


Kermit Zarley brings reasonable logic for believing this view is false (see the reference link above).


How many post-resurrection appearances in the NT gospels are we talking about? In my book, I state that there either nine of ten. None of them are described as a "vision." Rather, I think the authors clearly present their narratives with the purpose of causing their readers to think that these were historical events that actually happened, thus certainly not visions that people only think in their minds. But in saying this, I need to address Luke 24.13-43.

Luke's says that on the first Sunday afternoon following Jesus' crucifixion death, two of Jesus' disciples were walking from Jerusalem seven miles to the village of Emmaus (Luke 24.13). Luke says, "While they...

This is well worth reading.


So how many people saw Jesus alive after His resurrection? It was at least 520 people. It is never enough for some folks, but these passages of Scripture were written in the first century and seem most reasonable.


What about where Jesus tells Mary to not touch Him, but later He invites the apostles to touch Him? Is this a contradiction? Many have written about this, but here is my opinion which is partly based on M. R. DeHann's argument.


  1. Jesus rose from the dead.

  2. Mary Magdalene sees Him.

  3. Jesus wants her to be the first witness. It is not written as to why, but it seems reasonable to me that since women in those days were not considered to be reliable witnesses, Jesus wants to show the world and especially the Apostles that women are very reliable witnesses. Jesus scolds the Apostles even for their unbelief of NOT believing the women.

  4. Jesus ascends to heaven to present His blood in the heavenly Temple.

  5. After completely His priestly ministry there, returns to earth when He visits/appears to the people. First He appears to other women, then Peter, the two on the Emmaus Road, then the 11.


The Post-resurrection appearances of Jesus

  1. Mary Magdalene (Mark 16:9-11, John 20:11-18

  2. Mary Magdalene, Salome, and Mary the mother of James (Matthew 28:9-10, compare with Mark 16:1)

  3. Peter (Luke 24:34, 1 Corinthians 15:5)

  4. Cleopas and the other disciple on the Emmaus Road (Mark 16:12-13, Luke 24:13-35)

  5. Ten Apostles with Thomas absent (Luke 24:36-43, John 20:19-25)

  6. Eleven Apostles, including Thomas (John 20:24-29)

  7. Seven Apostles at the Sea of Galilee (John 21:1-25)

  8. Eleven Apostles at some mountain in Galilee where Jesus told them to meet Him. (Matthew 28:16-20)

  9. Over 500 brethren who were together at one time. (1 Corinthians 15:6)

  10. James, His half-brother (1 Corinthians 15:7)

  11. With the Apostles for a meal. (Luke 24:44-49, Acts 1:3-8)

  12. His ascension. (Acts 1:9-11, Mark 16:19, Luke 24:50-51)

  13. Paul (Acts 9:1-6, Acts 18:9-10, Acts 23:11, 1 Corinthians 15:8)






















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