There are thousands of proofs of the truth of the
Christian message, the claims of the Scripture, and
the reality of the physical resurrection of Jesus
Christ. Have you ever considered that one of the
most stirring proofs of the fact of the resurrection
is the existence, the vitality, and the character of
the Christian Church in the world?
nearly every street corner in every city and town and
village and berg in America a spire points heavenward
in evidence of the vitality of the churches of Christ.
The power, truth, and endurance of the Christian
message are displayed by the singularity of the gospel
message which is proclaimed in a variety of ways by
very diverse groups across the land and around the
As the sun sweeps across the earth on Easter Sunday
morning our brothers and sisters in Christ are
celebrating the Resurrection of Christ. We may
differ on the way we govern our churches. We may
have differences of opinion about other doctrinal
issues. Some of our divisions and differences
displease the Lord. Some of our separateness is
evidence of our obedience to the Lord and our desire
to be people of conviction about truth. Some of
it is cultural. But we know that everyone who
has called on the Lord Jesus alone for salvation
through the blood of Jesus Christ is a part of our
There is a great and far-reaching factor that unites
every true Christian. Our faith, trust, and
confidence for salvation are in a Risen Christ.
We serve a risen Savior! We may baptize
differently. We may sing different songs.
We may meet in homes or store fronts, or cathedrals or
warehouses. We may sing the great anthems, or
Christian classics or we may praise him with acoustic
instruments and nasal voices, but all of our hearts
are filled with the wonder of the Living Christ.
And the same is true all over this great land of ours.
Where waves lap the rocky shores of Maine. Where
sun bakes the red clay of Georgia. Where
daffodils bloom on green hills of Pennsylvania.
Where cows graze on the farms of Wisconsin. Where snow
blankets the pines of Michigan. Where sand
covers the deserts of New Mexico. In wooden
chapels in mountain villages. From the Canadian
border to the gulf of Mexico. From the Spokane
to Cape Cod. In converted super-markets in
Americas suburbs. From the Northern tip of
Alaska where Eskimo children gather to hear
missionaries tell stories. To the white beaches
of Miami, Florida where a young man preaches on the
In cities and villages and county-side
In colleges and universities
Because Jesus Christ is alive He inspires us to
worship, and preaching, and song. Little
children lisp His praise. Gray-haired saints
weep to hear it.
In the homes of the Amish in the rolling hills of Ohio
where the men and women sit on opposite sides of the
church and the women wear head coverings and the hymns
are sung in high German. They bring the benches in
every week in a horse-drawn trailers and gather in the
afternoon to eat together while the children stroll on
the lawn. Young church-planters rent cinemas and
sing to the accompaniment of a synthesizer. In
tiny mountain churches the hymns are accompanies by
tinny upright pianos. In stately, historic
downtown churches majestic organs ring with triumphal
anthems. Great clapping swaying choirs in inner
city churches, faces radiant with the joy of Christ.
Church bells peel out their devotion to the living
Christ over city and countryside.
Some preach the gospel wearing robes and following the
church calendar and using liturgies. Some shout
and pound the pulpit and work up a sweat. Some
preach intellectual and philosophical messages.
Some pulpits are occupied by bi-vocational pastors
with simple messages and humble circumstances.
But all true faithful gospel preachers declare the
truth of the risen Christ, the holiness He demands,
His resurrection and the grace He supplies.
The message of all true churches is the message of the
cross and the resurrection. Every true herald of
the Gospel will turn a corner in his message and lead
his congregation along the Via Dolarosa to the Cross.
He will guide them past the wonderful horror of
Calvary and look in wonder on Jesus dying for our
sins. He will lead them to the garden in the
misty early morning light and behold the wonder of the
Not just here in America, but all over the face of the
In Cuba, thirsty as a sponge for the water of life.
From the jungles of the Amazon to the thriving cities
of Brazil… In thatch huts in tropical climates.
In chapels in once-Communist lands filled to every
corner with eager youth and old, faithful Babushkas.
In thousands of house churches in China. From
Greenland’s Icy mountain, to India’s Choral strand In
India where a man peddles his bike and sells his blood
to buy video equipment to project gospel films on a
sheet between two trees
And all from a frightened confused band of eleven
unlearned and ignorant men and some faithful women to
every continent on the globe! There is only one
possible explanation for that; Jesus Christ is alive!
Civilization as we know it we owe to the impact of the
churches of Christ.
The value placed on human life
Helping the poor and weak
Education for everyone
Freedom for all … civil liberties born with
Christianity. The contribution of Christianity
to Science. The positive impact on Sexuality and
the family. Medicine, Art and music.
The blood of the martyrs is still the seed of the
church. Wherever the greatest hostility toward
the faith is found you will find the deepest faith.
Who could ever have guessed in the last twenty years
the fall of communism and the role the church would
play in it. Who could have predicted the hunger
for the gospel in these one dark oppressive lands,
like Russia and Romania. In Korea one church has
500,000 in attendance each Sunday; many others have
tens of thousands. In China today missiologists
say the most thriving expression of the church in the
world operates in the midst of government oppression.
In Iran and Iraq today there is a growing number of
devoted Christians. Many pastors have laid down
their lives in the last few years as the cruel arm of
Islam has tried to snuff out the fledgling church in
that land. In Central Africa Muslim warriors
have swept into Christian villages, killed all the men
and subjected the wives and children to the worst
imaginable kinds of slavery and abuse, but the church
still thrives in an atmosphere of homicidal oppression
When Jesus said; “I will build my church and the gates
of hell will not prevail against it,” He had a tiny
band of lay-preachers. It appeared to be a tiny
and inconsequential sect that could not survive the
death of its leader.
Today the whole earth is full of His glory.
Greater triumphs await. Jesus has promised that
there will be a time when the whole earth will be full
of his glory as the waters cover the sea. Easter
is a day in which we can rejoice in the victory Christ
has won over death, sin, the grave and hell.
As certain as winters cold snows are melted away by
spring's warm sun.
As certain as the frozen earth yields to the purple
crocus, and yellow daffodil and tulip beds are filled
with a rainbow of color,
As certain as the living green comes back into the
lawn and the robin arrives to ply it's surface for
As certain as the birds return to the feeder…
As certain as the sun climbs up over eastern horizon
every morning… So one day death's icy hold will be
broken… Disease will claim no more children… Cancer
will no longer separate us form our loved ones… Sin
will not foul our relations with people. Families will
not be broken…
There will be no more night
no more sorrow
no more crying
no more disease
no more pain
no more graves
no more death
no more parting with loved ones
no more loneliness
no more fear
no more prejudice
no more injustice
no more broken families
no more sinful defeat
no more temptation
no more sin
no more pain
no more disease
no more heartache
no more labor
no more separation
no more doubt
April 8, 2007