April 20, 2003
INTRODUCTION: In recent years there has been much interest in finding evidence that would back up the claims of the Scriptures. Many theologians and scientists have studied the Shroud of Turin, which claims, to be the actual burial cloth of Christ, and yet, the verdict is still out. Some people say: "if only we could find something that would prove this or that" in the Bible "then we could believe!" There is a tendency to try to find something that would confirm what is in the Bible. The idea is, then people would believe! Unfortunately, such is not the case. Let us this morning examine the conversation between the rich man and the Father. For in this conversation the Father gives us what we only need to believe in the reality of the resurrection.
I. Like the rich man, some say "if only someone could return from the dead! Then people would believe"
A. The rich man wanted someone sent back from the dead to warn his brothers of their potential doom.
B. We might be tempted to think - if only there were something to confirm the truths of the Scriptures.
II. The reality is that if someone could return from the dead, it would not be enough!
Jesus confirms this in verse 31.
There is plenty of evidence that Jesus is right
a. God spoke at Sinai and it made little difference.
b. The prophets of old performed mighty miracles but only a few believed.
c. Jesus came into this world as the Son of God and He was crucified.
d. Lazarus arose from the dead and this only hardened the opposition to Jesus (John 12:10)
e. Jesus Himself rose from the dead, and the soldiers who were eyewitnesses to this event lied about it to save their own necks.
III. The return of someone from the dead would serve no good purpose for good reasons.
God has made other provisions
a. "Moses and the prophets" refers to the Bible
b. God has already told us everything we need to know in His Word
B. It is only His provisions which will work
a. People do not fail to believe because of a lack of truth. They fail to believe because of the attitude of their heart. (Romans 10:8-10)
b. Miracles may make people question and seek for the truth, but they will not make people believe.
CONCLUSION: Even a voice of one who came back from the dead would not help because you need nothing else. The testimony of those eyewitnesses is sufficient evidence. This evidence is the power of God to make you wise unto salvation. Today the Father calls you to believe this simple yet life-changing message. He is risen! He is risen indeed Alleluia! A blessed Easter!