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It's Different Now!
2 Corinthians 5:17
Easter Sunday was a very special day!
It is a week after.
The lilies are gone.
Many who were here last week have not returned.
Maybe, they'll be back for Christmas.
Everything is back to normal.
Because of the resurrection of Jesus, we see ourselves differently.
- We should see things differently because of Easter!
- We should see new possibilities and hope for our church.
- We come today with new hope for ourselves.
Christ overcame death, hell, and the grave, and we know that we can be victorious because of Him.
Resurrection life from God comes with victory, joy and peace.
God is the God of the living and the dead.
There is no reason to be afraid.
We are a creation of God.
God loves us.
A prominent city official in a large city suffered a severe heart attack.
He was in his early 40's.
After his experience, he wrote a personal account of that night when his heart stopped twice.
He wrote that the hospital staff had already discussed how they would break the news of his death to the media.
He also related how the impact of that night had on his life.
That one eventful night changed the way he saw things.
- He changed the way he functioned.
- He changed his habits of eating, and what he ate.
- He began to exercise.
- He planned more time to be with his family.
Easter has come, and we see ourselves differently!
We should also see others differently!
- We need to change some patterns of our lives.
- We need to form some new habits.
- We should determine to give God more of ourselves.
Charles Dickens,' Christmas Carol, presents a story about a man with a dead soul.
- We should look at every person we see, and say, "God loves that person!"
- We should be concerned about the lost condition of our family and friends.
- We should determine to love them as God loves them!
- We must remember that we are not their judge.
- We are to share with them the good news they desperately need.
- We must tell them that God loves them, and that Jesus died for them.
Scrooge was as mean and selfish as anyone could possibly be.
His heart was cold.
There was not a generous bone in his body.
In the story Scrooge is led to see how hateful and mean he had become.
In the end his old soul dies.
He comes to have a new soul.
His life was new.
Instead of being a withered, old miser, Scrooge becomes kind-hearted, and charitable.
This selfish Scrooge began to see things differently.
He saw others differently!
That is our story.
We have had an Easter experience.
Christ is alive and living in us, and we see everything differently!
Almost a century ago, an old man was traveling alone in France, by train.
A much younger man, who was sitting next to him.
He watched as the old man reached into his traveling case and take out a Bible.
After a few minutes, the young man asked, "What are you reading?"
The old man answered,
"I am reading from the sixth chapter of Mark in the New Testament."
"What does it say?" the younger man asked.
"It is the story of the miracle of the loaves and fishes," the old man responded.
The younger man asked, "Do you really believe that?"
"Yes, I do," said the old man.
The younger man said,
"I can see that you have been brainwashed by ancient superstitions.
That could never happen to me. ... You see, I am a scientist.
Everything that happens in this world can ultimately be accounted for scientifically.
The story you have read defies the laws of science and, therefore, is sheer fantasy.
Give me facts.
As a man of science, I can have no faith in miracles.
But, I cannot expect you to understand that."
At this point, the train began to slow down.
"Here is my station," said the younger man, as he rose from his seat.
"It was nice talking with you, Mr. ... I'm sorry, I did not get your name."
Whereupon, the old man handed him his calling card,
bearing the name, LOUIS PASTEUR, one of the world's greatest scientists.
Easter has come!
We have celebrated the greatest miracle of all history.
Only Christ has died, and then came back to life again.
Because of Christ, we can begin all over again!
Because of Christ, it is different now!
"Once I was lost in sin, I had no peace within,
To save my weary soul I knew not how,
Then Jesus came to me and by His grace I'm free,
Now it different, yes, it's oh so different now.
It's different now since Jesus saved my soul,
So different now since by his blood I'm whole,
Oh, Satan had to flee when Jesus rescued me,
It's different now, yes it's oh so different now."
Are you different now?
Look at yourself!
You have been created by God.
God loves you no matter who you are or what you have done.
He will give you a priceless gift, called life.
You can really live forever, but only if you come to Jesus!
You can experience the greatest miracle -- you can be born again to a new life!
Jesus is ready to come into your heart.
Come now and experience the difference that Easter makes!
Sermon by Dr. Harold L. White
Email Dr. White at email@example.com