"If an angel walks besides me it is because ahead of me is a work that only an angel can do!"

Acts 26:8 “Why should it be thought a thing incredible with you, that God should raise the dead? ”

Concerning the souls of our believing friends who have departed this life – we have no distress.

“Absent from the body – present with the Lord.”

We are often concerned about their body, which we have committed to the deep dark grave.

It is horrible to reflect that their dear faces are being stripped of their beauty by the fingers of decay.

That all the noble fabric we knew – should be broken to ruin and dissolved in dust.

Though we may with bravery face the future- we never really forget the divine decree “it is appointed unto all en once to die.” This flesh shall see corruption.This glorious doctrine of the resurrection of the body is intended to take fear away.

That very flame which we lay in the dust shall wake at the trumpet of the Archangel…  Wake to superior beauties and with attributes never known before.

Remember the Lord loved us not as disembodied spirits, but as men and women robed in flesh and blood.

God has put a value on our bodies:-

The Bible says: “Present your BODIES a living sacrifice.”

“Your bodies are the temple of the Holy Ghost.”

  1. My friends, it would not be a complete victory over sin and Satan if the Saviour left a part of His people in the grave.

Not a bone will be forgotten – Death’s prison house will be utterly rifled of every trophy.

Alas – we in unbelief ask “Is it possible ? — Can it be true?”

To such questions my text is pointed. See Acts 26:8 “Why should it be thought a thing incredible with you, that God should raise the dead? ”

  1. Let us Face the ProblemsSome misguided preachers have sought to water down this doctrine. Thinking to make it more acceptable to critics.

No man has been impressed by discovering preachers are half-ashamed of their faith.

How can a man be convinced by preachers who do not believe their own faith?

  1. When we modify doctrine and trim scripture, we defeat ourselves.

Nothing of that kind affects me!

  1. We are to remember that though we die with the same body with which we were born – life does cause great changes, BUT THOSE CHANGES DO NOT AFFECT IDENTITY.
  2. Though we shall be raised in very different bodies – yet the identity will be retained.

It is sown in weakness – it is raised in power.”

it is sown in dishonour – it is raised in glory.”

We do not ask scientists to support us – let them keep to their sphere and we will keep to ours.

The doctrine we teach neither FEARS NOR FLATTERS human learning.

“Why should it be thought a thing incredible with you, that God should raise the dead? ”

The Problems:-

  1. When we see a mummified corpse we say – well maybe if all dead bodies were embalmed we could believe resurrection.

But how utterly have the ancient dead disappeared – where now is the dust of Paul?

Of Festus? Who sent him to Rome.

Of Nero? the emperor who condemned him.

Of the unknown executioner? who beheaded him.

Atoms once wedded in a man’s life may be divorced poles apart.

  1. The difficulty increases when we think of the number of the dead – “THE MAJORITY” – and our doctrine is that ALL MEN SHALL BE RAISED!

If it were a few – say Elijah – Lazarus – well we may accept that  –

but think of the MULTITUDES BEFORE THE FLOOD

But think of the MILLIONS SINCE THEN

But think of the MYRIADS TODAY —

That not one shall sleep forever – Huxley says it is a “MONSTROUS MIRACLE & WEARS THE ASPECT OF A THING INCREDIBLE”

  1. Let me make it more incredible!

In doing so I feel like Elijah on Carmel – pouring water on the sacrifice before he prayed for fire from heaven to burn it up.

Think where some bodies are:

In deep mines.

Carried by the wash and swell of tides to unknown shores.

They lie in pathless desert – far as vultures eye can see.

They enrich the fields of Flanders  and of France.

BLOWS THERE A SINGLE WIND THAT DOES NOT CARRY A PARTICLE OF WHAT ONCE WAS MAN?

YET I TELL YOU — AS CERTAIN AS GOD IS — OUR DEAD SHALL LIVE!

  1. And remember – our doctrine says – the Resurrection is not simply RESTORATION – TRANSFORMATION.

We plant a bulb – it rises a lovely lily.

We sow in the soil a seed – there comes forth a resplendent flower, with exquisite perfume.

I tell you who are afraid of scientists and humanists and philosophers – OUR FAITH IS INCREDIBLE TO CARNAL MINDS – AND NO WONDER!

OUR LORD JESUS WILL NOT ONLY RAISE US BUT CHANGE US – WORM’S MEAT SHALL BE MADE LIKE UNTO HIS GLORIOUS BODY!

SISTERS – It shall be as though a tattered torn moth-eaten garment were suddenly to be bleached to dazzling, glistening, glittering, gleaming, whiteness – its every threa restored and then adorned with embroideries such as women’s fingers have never woven on this earth.

  1. Let me pour on some more water – Let me help the prophets of Baal – assist the scientists

– fend for the philosophers

– undergird the unbelievers

My help for them shall be in vain.

NOTHING IN NATURE SUPPORTS THE DOCTRINE OF THE RESURRECTION.

Every analogy breaks down.

  1. SLEEP – DEATH — AWAKENING RESURRECTION

Ah! but even in sleep life is present!

THE CHRYSALIS AND THE BUTTERFLY.

But though the grub sleeps – it also lives

  1. Now To The Simple Solution

This is no empty boast — the matter IS SIMPLE!

  1. Read the text with proper emphasis and DIFFICULTIES MELT LIKE SNOW IN SUNSHINE…

“Why should it be thought a thing incredible with you, that God should raise the dead? ”

  1. It might seem a thing incredible that the dead should be raised, but it is certainly not incredible that GOD, the Almighty, the INFINITE, should raise the dead.

GRANT THAT GOD IS, AND UNBELIEF IS IMPOSSIBLE!

  1. We do not run to the armouries of reason to defend our faith. ONE WORD FROM GOD OUTWEIGHS FOR US A LIBRARY OF HUMAN LORE.
  2. When Paul uttered this text he was speaking to a Jew – AGRIPPA – to whom he could say: “Believest thou the prophets – I know that thou believest.”

For he had the testimony of…

Job: “I know that my Redemmer lives and though skin worms destroy this body yet in my flesh I shall see God.”

Isaiah: Chapter 26.

Daniel: Chapter 12.

Hosea: Chapter 13.

  1. To us as Christians we have fuller scriptures.

John 5:28; John 6:40; Philippians 3:21; and the monumental 15th Chapter of 1st Corinthians.

Everything is wonderful until we are used to it, and resurrection owes the incredible portion of its marvel to the fact of our never having come across it in our observation – that is all!

We were born but lately and have seen nothing as yet.

Will resurrection be a greater wonder than creation? –

To creat out of nothing is more wonderful than to collect scattered atoms, surely!

How would your eyes have opened – if, standing in the inky blackness you had heard “LET THERE BE LIGHT!” AND LIGHT LEPT AT YOU AS A LIVING THING.

How would your jaw have gaped, had you seen from the dust an unseen hand fashion a form – and you had heard a gust of breath fill the uninflated being – and Adam had got up from Mother Earth.

Friends – if it did not happen so often, the birth of every child would be regarded as a miracle of God – and such indeed it is.

Remember too – the Lord Jesus Christ rose from the dead. He is the guarantee of my resurrection: “As in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.”

Fellow saints: Remember too that you have already had a work of resurrection done within you.

“You hath He quickened who were dead in trespasses and sins.”

This is the forerunner of your physical quickening.

  1. Our Relation To This Truth

CHILDREN OF GOD: “Blessed are the dead that die in the Lord.”

UNCONVERTED HEARER:  Jesus said – “Fear Him Who is able to destroy both body and soul in Hell.”

The Bible speaks of the Resurrection to Damnation – Daniel names it, a rising to “everlasting shame and contempt.”

Are you ready should Jesus come tonight? He said: “I am the resurrection and the life!”

An inconceivable number shall be raised in the First Resurrection. “A multitude that no man can number.”

SUDDENLY they shall start up from their beds of dust and silent clay. God’s workshop shall not be long engaged in fitting atom to atom – bone to bone.

Man needs time, but God created time and needs it not!

“We shall all be changed in a moment in the twinkling of an eye!”

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