“The Spiritual Empire Strikes Back".
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Revelation 12: 1-5, 7-9, 12b, 17
I. Opening story about a Christian puppet show at the North Carolina State Fair.
A. It’s Easter morning and devil is all worried about Jesus staying in the grave.
B. The stone rolls away and an angel announces Jesus is risen.
II. Continuing story
A. Tied in Revelation 12 to the Easter story.
B. The devil lost his immediate attack upon God’s plan so he strikes back.
C. He struck back at God’s plan by the lie told in Matthew 28 about the disciples stealing Jesus’ body.
D. Tied in Revelation 12 to the Easter story and the Star Wars movie “The Empire Strikes Back.”
III. Application and Conclusion
A. Ephesians 6 informs us that our struggle to be and function as a healthy church is not a matter of flesh and blood. It is a matter of a spiritual war that is going on.
B. Whenever a church makes any progress in what Christ calls us to, we can always expect the empire of evil to strike back.
C. Churches need biblical teaching about who we are in Christ and walking in victory over the evil empire.
D. Churches need a stronger prayer life for one another.
E. Churches can often benefit from participating in a spiritual freedom workshop.
F. Closed with a story about a church that benefited from going through a spiritual freedom workshop and one that only went through the motions but did not benefit from the experience.
G. We can go forth this Easter rejoicing not only in Christ’s resurrection but also that his resurrection power offers the Church his power to overcome when the empire of evil strikes back. As Jesus said, even the gates of hell shall not prevail against his Church.
This sermon was the eighth and final sermon in my church health sermon series for my dissertation
"PREACHING FOR A WHOLE PERSON RESPONSE IN DEVELOPING A HEALTHY CHURCH."
Diss. Asbury Theological Seminary, 2001.
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