Sunday, April 25, 2010

Philippi - Sharing the Gospel

Philippi - Sharing the Gospel
Intro.: A while back a book caught my attention.

  1. When Bad Things Happen to Good People”

  2. The book caught my attention, but I never read it. On the other hand most of us have been caught by surprise when something unexpectedly bad happens to good people.

  3. Let me give you an example. Gentlemen: Understanding your pulpit is vacant, I should like to apply for the position. I have many qualifications. I’ve been a preacher with much success and also have had some success as a writer. Some say I’m a good organizer. I’ve been a leader most places I’ve been. I’m over 50 years of age. I have never preached in one place for more than three years. In some places, I have left town after my work caused riots and disturbances. I must admit I have been in jail three or four times, but not because of any real wrongdoing. My health is not too good, though I still get a great deal done. The churches I have preached in have been small, though located in several large cities. I’ve not gotten along well with religious leaders in towns where I have preached. In fact, some have threatened me and even attacked me physically. I am not too good at keeping records. I have been known to forget whom I baptized. However, if you can use me, I shall do my best for you.i

  4. If you had not guessed, this is Paul's job application. Bad things to happen to good people.

  5. I want to read one passage that may help us to understand how Paul felt about one difficult situation he found himself in.

Read: Philippians 1:12-18


Trans: Where is Paul I prison?

Remember, that as Paul writes, he is in prison – probably in Rome, but worry about where later.

T.S. In the next few minutes I want look at three things that make Paul excited in Philippians 1:12-18

  1. Paul gets to preach the gospel

    1. I am occasionally surprised by the people of scripture. They don't behave the way I expect them to, their attitudes are different, they see things differently.

    2. And Paul is no different here – I mean, if I were stuck in prison for something I did not do, I would be stressed out. Big time.

    3. He is excited about being in prison – why? Because he still gets to share the gospel.

    4. His audience is limited.

(Ill.) We get excited when we hear about men like Martin Luther who began the Reformation and the very direction of cultures were effected. Or John Wesley or George Whitefield, two men from England who sat on opposite sides of the theological wall. But they had one thing in common – they both preached to thousands in the fields of 18th century England. Or even today, people are drawn to large churches.

    1. But not Paul – his audience as he writes is limited. One or two men at a time. Members of the Caesar's Praetorian guard were stationed one or two at a time around Paul – but day after day, week after week, he will be sharing his faith with a good number of Caesar's personal army.

    2. Paul did not have a huge audience at this point in his life. The letters he wrote would influence far more people than he ever could in that prison cell. Yet, he knew that his task was not to count numbers, but tell those who crossed his path about this person he had met, about this man who had changed his life, about Jesus Christ.

(Appl.) It is not the number of people whose lives we touch that is important. It is that we are being faithful to what God would have us do. For some, that will be a large church. For others, it will be a small church. And for some, it will only be the few individuals that cross our paths. Our goal is not to count – but to serve the one who died for us on that cross 2000 years ago.

  1. Strong believers get to preach the gospel

    1. Paul is not the only one who is empowered to preach while he is in prison. There are two other groups.

    2. Paul has around him a faithful group of men who seek to honor their lord in what ever way they can.

    3. They recognize, as do all of those who come in contact with Paul, that he is in prison, not because he has done anything wrong, not because he has injured anybody, but because of his faith in Jesus Christ.

(Ill.) John Foxe entered Oxford still a boy. He was eventually elected a fellow of Magdalen College, and from 1539 to 1545 he studied church history. He converted to Protestantism and was forced to resign his academic position as a result. In 1550 he was ordained by Nicholas Ridley, Bishop of London, and he became friends with Hugh Latimer, William Tyndale, and Thomas Cramner. But when Queen Mary ascended the throne, tilting England back into Catholicism, Foxe fled. In Switzerland, he heard horrible news filtering from England. Latimer, Ridley, Cramner, and countless others were being captured and burned.

An idea formed in Foxe’s mind, soon obsessing him. He would compile a record of the persecution of God’s people. Despite living on the edge of poverty, Foxe spent every spare moment on his project. He labored by day in Oporinus of Basel’s printing shop to support his family, but by night he pored over his manuscript. He wrote vividly, giving details, painting word pictures. In 1559, Foxe published his book on the Continent—732 pages in Latin. Returning to England under Protestant Elizabeth, he resumed pastoral work and translated his book into English. John Day published it in London in 1563 under the title Acts and Monuments of These Latter and Perilous Days Touching Matters of the Church.

But Foxe wasn’t finished. He spent four years traveling across England, interviewing witnesses, tracking down documents, finding letters. After long days of church ministry, he sat by flickering candlelight, continuing his writing. In 1570, a second edition appeared—two large volumes totaling 2,315 pages—then a third and a fourth.

Foxe’s Book of Martyrs was one of the most important events in Elizabeth’s reign, having an extraordinary impact on Britain. Copies appeared in every cathedral alongside the Bible. Vicars read from it during Sunday services. Francis Drake read it aloud on the western seas. It inspired the Puritans. It took the world by storm.ii

(Appl.) There are two errors that we sometimes fall into. The first is that being persecuted for my faith, for your faith, is something new. Nobody has had it as bad as me or as you. Not true. Jesus was persecuted, Paul was persecuted, most of the disciples experienced some kind of persecution during their lives.

There is another kind of error – that of thinking that living in the 21st century, we no longer have to deal with persecution. While we don't see much of it in America – there are parts of the world where converting to Christianity means being ostracized from the family and or community. There are parts of the world where converting to Christianity can be a certain death sentence.

    1. One might think that Paul's imprisonment might be a signal to keep the faith under wraps – after all, who wants to end up like Paul, in prison.

    2. Listen to what Paul says, “And most of the brothers, having become confident in the Lord by my imprisonment, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.” There may be some who are holding their tongues, but most, most, are encouraged as they watch Paul and are willing to share their faith with a world that is just beginning to understand what it means to follow Jesus.

    3. For some, suffering may slow them down. But for Paul and many of his fellow believers, Paul's suffering become motivation for spreading the Gospel.

  1. Weak believers are also preaching the gospel

    1. I should not surprise us that Paul is preaching the gospel. And probably only mildly surprised that there are believers who are sharing their faith.

    2. But something falls apart – you see believers, like so many others, have lots of motivations. Paul reminds us that some are sharing the gospels out of goodwill. But there are those who are jealous of Paul's reputation – they want to be known as the Paul of Rome rather than Paul of Tarsus.

    3. Peter, in his first letter, puts envy right up there with hate, lying, and fraud.

(Ill.) A little snail that lived by the ocean noticed with envy the big and beautiful shell in which the lobster lived. “Oh! How this little shell of mine pinches,” whined the little snail. “What a grand palace the lobster carries on his back! I wish I lived in his place. Oh! Wouldn’t my friends admire me in that shell! Think of a snail living in a mansion like that!” In time a wonderful thing occurred. The watching, envious snail beheld the lobster work right out of his shell to grow up in another, larger one. When the empty, metallic green shell of the lobster lay neglected on the beach, the snail said, “Now I shall have my wish. Hurrah! The little snail is going to live in a lobster shell!” In his pride he cried out to the birds overhead, “Ah, the little snail is going to live in a lobster shell.” He cried to the cattle in the field, “Oh, oh! Now you shall see. The little snail is going to live in a palace.” So the birds and the cattle in the field were curious and they watched the little snail. The snail pulled himself loose from his own little shell, and cried, “Well, I’m glad to say I’m through with you. Goodbye. You’ve pinched me and pressed me for the last time. I am going to live in the grand lobster shell.” The birds and the animals saw the little snail proudly crawl into the towering lobster shell and he huffed and puffed and blew and gasped in an effort to make himself fit. But with all his efforts he felt very small inside the grand lobster shell. He grew tired, too. That night he died because the great empty shell was so cold. A wise old crow then said, “You see! That’s what comes of envy. What you have is enough. Be yourself and save yourself from a lot of trouble. How much better to be a little snail in a comfortable shell than to be a little snail in a big shell and freeze to death!”iii



  1. iStreiker, L. D. (2000). Nelson's big book of laughter : Thousands of smiles from A to Z (electronic ed.) (280). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

  1. iiMorgan, R. J. (2000). Nelson's complete book of stories, illustrations, and quotes (electronic ed.). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

  1. iiiAMG Bible Illustrations. 2000 (electronic ed.). Logos Library System; Bible Illustrations Series. Chattanooga: AMG Publishers.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Philippi - A Prayed For Church

                    Philippi - A Prayed For Church                    
Intro.: If I were to ask you to write a letter to your best high school friend – what would you say?
  1. You would probably start with a greeting much like we looked at last week.

  2. But what then – would you ask a question? Would you tell a little about your own life's experiences since you last saw your friend?

  3. Any number of things – but Paul is not like you or me. He does not start off by asking questions or explaining what happened on the way to Damascus.

  4. Rather, Paul begins with a Prayer.

Read: Philippians 1:3-11


Trans: Philippi is a relatively young town
  1. Named after Philip, the father of Alexander the great

  2. Though a smaller village existed in the distant past, the town that Paul knew really dated from a few years after the newest writing of the Old Testament.

  3. About 50 years before Jesus was born, Marc Antony and Octavian defeated the armies of Brutus and Cassius who had assassinated Julius Caesar (remember the famous line from Shakespeare “Et tu brutus”. A few years later, Octavian (who had adopted the name Caesar Augustus) defeated Marc Antony and moved Antony's army and their families to Philippi. This was the Philippi that Paul visited and wrote his letter.

  4. This was the home of the Philippian church for whom Paul prayed.

T.S. The prayer found in Philippians 1:3-11 demonstrates two important roles that prayer plays in the life of the believer.
  1. The first role that Paul demonstrates is the willingness to spend time in THANKSGIVING.

    1. I tend to just live my life – too often I let life happen around me with no thought about what has happened or why.

    2. But Paul sets a different example – The first thing he does, after writing his initial greeting, is to say Thank You.

      1. Not to the church to whom he is writing, he does not say thank you to his friends; rather, he expresses it to God.

      2. He reminds the church that he is thankful for them. “I thank my God in all my remembrance of you” I don't know if he does not think the Philippian church will believe him or not, but he repeats it - “always in every prayer of mine for you all making my prayer with joy.

    3. Paul has watched this church, he has seen people put their faith in Christ – Lydia, the woman who sold purple cloth, there was the jailor who just about took his life when he thought Paul and Silas had escaped the jail. And there were others that had placed their faith in Christ, been baptized, and understood what it meant to be transformed into the image of Christ.

(Ill.) A transformed life is difficult to understand. Yet each summer we understand the importance of a transformation. We take an ice cube tray, fill it with water, and put into the freezer – a few hours later, it becomes the very thing that makes a glass of water, ice tea, soda, or, now, even coffee, refreshing. It is still H2O – a chemist will prove to you it is exactly the same thing that we put into that freezer. But that chemist is wrong. Something has changed, something is not the same. When Christ takes a life and transforms it – it has a similar appearance. We know the person looks the same, he or she may smell the same, the eyes have not changed color; yet, when Christ gets a hold of a life, it is not the same.

    1. There are similarities between the transformed ice and the transformed life. First, we can see the transformation. No two ice cubes are exactly alike, no two lives are exactly the same. But we can tell the difference, none the less. We are not cookie cutter Christians – but God transforms each of us in exactly the way he needs us to become more like Him.

    2. There is another similarity between the transformed ice cubes and the transformed life – the ice cubes work together with the liquid to cool off the drink. Oh, one cube may reduce the temperature a bit, but not for long. Or if all I have is the ice cubes, and no tea, it is not very refreshing. It takes a bunch of ice cubes and some fresh brewed tea to make real refreshing ice tea. Paul worked along side the believers in Philippi. They were “partakers” with Paul as they served God and experienced grace.

    3. But there is a difference between the transformed ice and the transformed life. Once the ice freezes, it is done. We cannot transform it any further. But the transformed life is never done. In fact that is part of Paul's prayer, “I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” You have me say it before, and it is stilll true – God is not finished with us. “I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.

  1. The second role that Paul demonstrates that we must be willing to bring OUR NEEDS TO GOD.

    1. Paul begins his prayer by noting he thanks God for the presence of the Philippians in his life.

    2. But he immediately turns to praying FOR them.

    3. Of course, Paul wouldn't pray like I would pray. He doesn't pray for health, he doesn't pray for safety. He doesn't pray the church would avoid persecution – I think those would be wonderful things to pray for. Rather, he prays that their LOVE would grow.

(Ill.) John Calvin also understood the connection between prayer and love. He said it this way: To make intercession for men is the most powerful and practical way in which we can express our love for them.i

    1. So as Paul prayed for the Philippians he not only prayed for them, he was saying to them, “I love you.”

    2. I think it amazing that twice in the same letter, Paul makes it clear that he understands that God is not done – we looked at it earlier. As he asks that the Philippians love would “abound more and more” he again is demonstrating that he is expecting the believers to grow beyond their current state.

    3. But Paul is not done – you see, if we learn to love, we will not be the same. As we pray, we will approve what is excellent, we will be pure and blameless, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God. And lest you think I am making that up, know that I am just quoting Paul here.

    4. Loving someone else, be it family, friend, neighbor, or co-worker, is not just about them. Loving someone else also changes us.

(Ill.) I don't remember how many of you remember the old balance scale that was popular in science labs in the 40's and 50's. It sort of worked like a teeter-toter that we mentioned a few weeks ago. The user would put the thing to be weighed on one side and place increasingly smaller counter weights on the other till the two were equal. But what happened if you put extra counter weights into the pain – the sample would go up. Love is sort of like that – if I keep on learning to love and put it into practice, this other side keeps going up higher. You see, it is you and I that are sitting on this sample side – and as we love others, we keep going higher and higher – becoming more and more like Jesus.

    1. I hope your prayer for me, as mine is for you, that your love will abound more and more, so that you will become pure and blameless, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes from Jesus Christ to the glory and praise of God.



iJohn Calvin quoted in Water, M. (2000). The new encyclopedia of Christian quotations (773). Alresford, Hampshire: John Hunt Publishers Ltd.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Philippi - A Joyful Church

Philippi - A Joyful Church

Intro.: Paul is in Rome.

  1. Now that sounds like a wonderful vacation – except for one fact, Paul is in prison for his faith.

  2. I have a special appreciation for the letters Paul writes from Prisions – you see as Paul writes, he is chained to a prison guard. Every letter, every word, he writes is read by that guard. Can you imagine the uproar that would occur if Paul were to write something that did not match his own life.

Read: Philippians 1:1-2


T.S. During the next few minutes, I want to look at three questions that will guide our introduction to the book of Philippians.

  1. Who wrote Philippians?

    1. At one level the answer may seem obvious – Paul and Timothy

    2. Quite a contrast these two – Paul, an elder statesman in the church. Timothy, a young man that was just beginning his ministry for the church.

    3. Paul had spent years learning about the church – first as he sought to destroy this new cult that he saw infiltrating the Roman empire and Jewish people of which he was so proud. Later, after being challenged flby Jesus Christ himself on the road to Damascus, he was discipled by both leaders of the church and by the Holy Spirit.

    4. Though most of us have heard of Timothy, I suspect that fewer of us know much about the other person given credit for writing this letter.

      1. Timothy is a third generation Christian. His grandmother, Lois, and his mother, Eunice, were there to teach him the scriptures.

      2. It is speculated that he was converted during Paul's first missionary journey.

      3. It was during Paul's second missionary journey that Timothy first joined Paul as he traveled – but from that time on, Timothy was the most significant people to travel with Paul. He not only traveled with Paul, but was named as co-author of six of the Pauline epistles, he was sent alone to serve as his representative to return or precede Paul's arrival.

(Appl.) You see, age is not what makes someone God's servant. Paul was of a different generation than Timothy, but God used both men to spread the good news. By the end of the year, I will be 60 years old. Some of you are approaching 80 years of age. But who cares – know this, that God is able and willing to use you to serve Him. As members of His church – not my church, not some denomination, but as a member of the family of God, we are called to serve Him.

    1. So, there we have it, “Paul and Timothy, servants of Christ Jesus” - authorship.

    2. Two gotchas – first it is not clear whether there is any original writing in Philippians that can be attributed to Timothy. Timothy was undoubted there, but there is serious doubt whether he wrote any part of this letter.

    3. But there is another gotcha – whenever we look at scripture, from Genesis to Revelations, we must remember that there is always another author involved – God himself.

      1. Later, Paul would write to Timothy, “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.”

      2. The role of inspiration (i.e. breathed out) means that God so prepared Paul – though his training and experiences – that when he wrote, he wrote what God intended to be written.

      3. As you read your Bible, remember that it comes with the force of God speaking. Listen to Him speak to you as you read.

(Ill.) Too often we fall into the trap of believing everything we read. We answer questions by saying, “I saw it in the paper” or, a member of a younger generation might say, “I saw it on the INTERNET.” Most writers on the INTERNET or in the newspaper try to be accurate – yet they are not. They are fallible – even as you and I are. We need to learn to listen to God's word, so we can say with confidence “I saw it in Scripture.”

  1. To whom did they write?

    1. Philippians is written to a church – the whole church: To all the saints in Christ Jesus who are at Philippi, with the overseers and deacons.

    2. Did you know that believers are also called “saints.” This is directly connected to the word “holy” - both words in the New Testament mean “the set aside ones”. As saints, we are set aside for God's use.

    3. And Paul is not merely talking to the church leaders – because he says, essentially, “to the saints, including the elders and the deacons.” Paul does not make the distinction that we too often make – that there is difference between clergy and church member. What Paul writes, applies to us all – clergy and church member alike.

(Ill.) Ronald Rolheiser, Roman Catholic Priest and President of a Catholic University in Texas, wrote, “We want to be saints, but we also want to feel every sensation experienced by sinners; we want to be innocent and pure, but we also want to be experienced and taste all of life; we want to serve the poor and have a simple lifestyle, but we also want all the comforts of the rich; we want to have the depth afforded by solitude, but we also do not want to miss anything; we want to pray, but we also want to watch television, read, talk to friends, and go out.”i He is suggesting that we want to be the best of saints and proud members of our world at the same time. A difficult task at best – perhaps, for some, impossible.

  1. They put the ending at the beginning?

    1. And then Paul does something I would never think of doing. He puts the benediction in verse 2 - Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

    2. That is my prayer for you as well. I learned about grace the hard way – I had to hit bottom before I could really know what grace was really about.

    3. But once I really experienced grace, it grew on me. I really understood brokenness when I knew something of grace. I learned to forgive those around me when I learned about grace. And I learned to forgive myself when I learned about grace.

    4. And that is my prayer for you. That you too can learn about forgiveness for yourselves and for others.

    5. And when that happens, we get an extra blessing - Peace

(Ill) Richard Watson was a Puritan preacher in the 17th century. He understood the role of peace in the believers life: The Puritan Thomas Watson put it this way: God the Son is called the Prince of Peace. He came into the world with a song of peace: “On earth peace.…” He went out of the world with a legacy of peace, “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give unto you.” Christ’s earnest prayer was for peace; He prayed that His people might be one. Christ not only prayed for peace, but bled for peace: “Having made peace through the blood of His cross.” He died not only to make peace between God and man, but between man and man. Christ suffered on the cross, that He might cement Christians together with His blood; as He prayed for peace, so He paid for peace.



iLarson, C. B., & Lowery, B. (2009). 1001 quotations that connect: Timeless wisdom for preaching, teaching, and writing (292). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Jesus Prays for His Church

Jesus Prays for His Church

 Intro.: How does one say goodbye?

    1. This is the second time in three months that I have had to ask that question.
    2. The first was with a church that I had spent 7-1/2 serving.
    3. Now I say it to a church that I have served a little over seven weeks.
    4. I cannot help but imagine that Jesus, as started out on Thursday evening, wondering what he would say to his disciples as they spent one last meal together before his arrest, trial, and death.
    5. He has already encouraged His disciples to celebrate His life and death through the Lord's Supper.  Strange that we should celebrate the Lord's Supper at the end of our service – even though Jesus celebrated it as part of a meal.  Other than His instructions, it was a normal part of the passover meal as celebrated by Jews for nearly 1400 years prior to the birth of Jesus.
    6. And as Jesus readies Himself and His disciples for the walk that will lead to His arrest and death on Friday, he prays.

Read:  John 17:20-26


Trans:  Last week we looked at the first two parts of this prayer -

    1. Jesus prayed for Himself – that the glory he left, the role that was his, the place He had in the kingdom would be seen by a world that had chosen to reject Him.
    2. He also prayed for His disciples – he asked that they would be protected, no physically, but that their faith would remain intact as the faced the same opposition that Jesus faced during His life.
    3. Now Jesus turns His attention to pray, not for those present at the dinner, but to those who will come to faith because of the disciple's message.  As Jesus ends His prayer, He is praying for you and for me.

T.S.  In John 17:20-26, Jesus asks two things for His church.

  1. Jesus prays for the Unity of the Church
    1. This was Jesus' prayer, but I usually think of unity as being something Paul wanted.  You will remember the words from Philippians 2, “So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind.
(Ill.) George Whitefield was a contemporary of John and Charles Wesley – an active member of the Holy Club that included an active group of committed Christians.  In fact, when John and Charles Wesley left for America for their brief stay here as missionaries, it was George Whitefield that took over the leadership of Oxford's Holy Club.1  
But, because the Wesley's and Whitefield differed on some key doctrines, the public's perception was that they hated each other. It is said that both the Wesleys and Whitefield took out newspaper advertisements denouncing the beliefs of the other.  Sermons would be built around the differences that others noted.   The Wesleys and Whitefield would preach in the open air to congregations of several thousand.  
One day, a journalist, trying to get a statement that would inflame the rivalry, asked Charles Wesley if  he expected to see George Whitefield in heaven.  Thinking for a moment, Charles replied, “No, I do not think I will see Mr. Whitefield in heaven.  For,” he went on to say, “George Whitefield will be so close to the throne, and 'm going to be so far back, I will never see him.”
Here are two men who are very different in how they approach ministry and in how they understand God.  Yet they were able to see beyond their differences and know that God was using both.2    Their differences would be resolved – but by the time they that happened in heaven, the differences would have no importance at all.
    1. Christ's prayer is that we may be one – not like the disciples and He were one, but that we may be one just as Jesus and the Father are one.  That was Christ's prayer for the Church – as I leave this morning, it will be my prayer for you.
  1. Jesus prays that the world would see Christ through the Church
    1. But unity is not the goal here.  Listen to the words of Christ in vss. 22-23:  The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me.
    2. Unity is not about us – it is about the world in which we live.  About a world that does not know Jesus Christ. 
    3. Jesus has not yet given the Great Commission – that would come in the days and weeks which follow His resurrection.  But here, at the end of his last meal with the disciples before His death, Jesus asks that God would build a community of faith so strong that it will be obvious to the world, that it will be obvious to those among whom we live and spend time with.
    4. Christian unity does not happen because of us.  It is not even for us.  Christian unity is rooted in the person and work of Jesus Christ.
    5. Church unity is not founded on a common heritage, or race, or even abilities – though I suspect some churches build on their power on the softball field – Church unity is based on the person and work of Jesus Christ. 
(Ill.) James Dunn noted that Christian unity is distinctly different than that seen in the world.  We live in a world in which it becomes easy to define unity as uniformity.  Yet in the Christian Church, our unity will become apparent in our diversity.3 
    1. I wonder if Jesus saw the diversity that would make up the church?  I wonder if he foresaw the fights – both verbal and physical that would arise during the history of the church.  And I can't help but wonder if he cried when he saw the unity that He prayed for broken by the people he loved and died for?

Conclusion:  Jesus is about to end His prayer, He is about ready to go out that door, and be approached by a man who had spent most of three years with Him.  A man who will approach with a sign of love – kiss on the cheek.  

    1. Yet that kiss was not a kiss of love, it was a kiss of betrayal.
    2. A kiss that, a few hours later, would lead to the death of our Lord and Savior.
    3. Though I am certain that Judas Iscariot thought he would have the last word, it was not to be so.  Sadly, because Judas hanged himself over his guilt, he would not know the outcome – at least in this world.
    4. Sunday would be a day of surprises for the disciples.  They would hear of the empty tomb, they would hear the testimony of a few of the men and women that had spent time with Jesus – a testimony that said they had seen the resurrected Lord.
    5. But some would not believe until they had touch the hands of body of Jesus.  Jesus had prayed for them.
    6. But in the end, he prayed for you and for me – because we believed the testimony of those who had lived and listened to our savior so many years ago.
    7. Jesus prayed for us – for you and for me. 
  2. Courson, J. (2003). Jon Courson's Application Commentary. Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson.
  3. Water, M. (2000). The new encyclopedia of Christian quotations. Alresford, Hampshire: John Hunt Publishers Ltd.