Running On Empty: What the Empty Tomb Means To An Empty Life

Empty wallet? Empty relationships? Empty life?

It may be hard to see how a Jewish Rabbi who died nearly 2,000 years ago could have anything to offer your emptiness and brokenness today.

But that’s until you consider that this man didn’t stay in the tomb. Jesus was a Jewish Rabbi, but he was (and is) so much more!

On Easter Sunday, we began a three week message series entitled Running On Empty.

You can listen to and share the messages below:

1. Hopeless (John 20:1-18)

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Sermon Summary

Before encountering the resurrected Jesus, the empty tomb was bad news for Mary. She couldn’t see how the empty tomb might be good news. In her grief, she didn’t even recognize the resurrected Jesus until He spoke her name.

Sometimes it’s hard for us to see Jesus in the midst of our troubling circumstances. What makes the difference is when we can see the resurrected Jesus at work in and through our life circumstances to receive glory and to work all for our good.

We are not without hope because Jesus, who suffered far greater than we ever will, understands our need and promises to be with us. Even more, He has promised that these circumstances are temporary and that we are not alone!

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2. Faithless (John 20:19-31)

Join us April 23rd at City Life Church for the next message in this series.

3. Aimless (John 21:1-25)

Join us April 30th at City Life Church for the next message in this series.

Please contact us if you have questions about this series or about what it means to have a relationship with Jesus.

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Who Will You Believe? (1 John 5:6-12)

Who will you believe? The testimony of men or the testimony of God?

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Sermon Summary

There are 6 witnesses in this passage who testify to the truth that Jesus is God’s Son and that eternal life is found only in Him. The first two are historical witnesses, the next two are divine witnesses, and the final two are personal witnesses. Plus, two bonus witnesses show up (and they’re both named John).

I. The Historical Witnesses

a. The Water – This is referring to the baptism of Jesus which inaugurated His ministry on earth. At His baptism the Spirit of God descended on Him like a dove and a voice from Heaven called out “This is My beloved Son. I take delight in Him!” (Matthew 3:17)

First Bonus Witness: John the Baptist who testified, “I watched the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and He rested on Him. I didn’t know Him, but He who sent me to baptize with water told me, ‘The One you see the Spirit descending and resting on—He is the One who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ I have seen and testified that He is the Son of God!” (John 1:33-34)

Of course, Jesus didn’t need to repent, but His baptism revealed His identity to John and proved that He came for sinners.

b. The Blood – The blood refers to Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection. The blood of Jesus testifies to the fact that He is the sinless Son of God who gIves eternal life to all who believe in Him

II. The Divine Witnesses

a. The Spirit – This is the third witness that is mentioned in 1 John 5:6-12 and it says all three are in agreement. There is no debate. The Spirit, the water, and the blood, agree that Jesus is the Son of God.

But in what way does the Spirit testify? The Spirit inspired the Word of Truth because He is the Spirit of Truth. We know about the historical testimonies above, because the Spirit of God inspired the human authors to record those events.

But secondly, Jesus said that the Spirit would testify about Him. And that’s what the Spirit does when He convicts us of sin and points us to Jesus our Savior. So, the Spirit is on the backend and the front end of salvation. Both inspiring the revelation and the testimonies that we need to hear to have faith, and also convicting us personally of sin and shining the spotlight on Jesus.

b. The Father – Really, all of this is His show. The Father has gone on record at Jesus’ baptism, at the transfiguration, and to a crowd during Passion Week to say that Jesus is His Son.

To deny the testimony of the Father is to call Him a liar, but it is also to accept the testimony of fallible men as your source of truth.

III. The Personal Witnesses

a. Internal Witness – Do you have the Son? If you have the Son then what He has done, He did it for you. If you have the Son then all that He has promised, He has promised to you. The internal witness is a personal testimony in your own heart of life change based on a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

b. Eternal Witness – If you have the Son you have life! But eternal life doesn’t wait for us until after we die. We inherit eternal life now! Circumstances may not be great but deep down we have joy and contentment and peace because we know our eternity is secure. There is a deep assurance of salvation and relationship with God that accompanies “having the Son”. The believer feels the effects of eternal life in this life.

Finally, the Apostle John, is the other bonus witness. He starts his letter with:

1 What was from the beginning,
what we have heard,
what we have seen with our eyes,
what we have observed
and have touched with our hands,
concerning the Word of life—
that life was revealed,
and we have seen it
and we testify and declare to you
the eternal life that was with the Father
and was revealed to us—
what we have seen and heard
we also declare to you,
so that you may have fellowship along with us;

Then, towards the end of his letter, John writes:

I have written these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.

With this testimony, John begins and ends his letter: Jesus is the Son of God and through Him you may have eternal life.