The resurrection changes everything. But for many people, the resurrection is just a fact until we get the call with the goodness that changes our lives.


In this Easter Sunday sermon, we explore 3 vignettes of people when they first discovered the good news of Jesus’ resurrection. The resurrection had already taken place, but these are the three moments when they found out it was real, and it would change their lives forever.


1) Mary’s Encounter:


She suffered from severe demonic possession for many years. And it was Jesus who set her free. No one understood her like Jesus; He understood her trauma and pain. He was the one person in the whole world who’d seen her at her worst and lover her just the same.


So, when He was crucified and buried, her lifeline to freedom and healing was severed.


On resurrection morning, she was weeping and felt alone. But on that morning, she found the tomb empty, and when she met the resurrected Lord, something deep changed inside, and a joy welled up inside her that she couldn’t stop talking about.


The resurrection turns sorrow into joy.


If the resurrection can turn a Friday crucifixion into the glory of Easter morning, just imagine what Jesus’ resurrection can do for you, your sorrows, your story, and your life?


2) Thomas’ Encounter:


Thomas was one of Jesus’ 12 disciples. He had a lot of hopes and dreams of what Jesus might be and do, like restoring Israel to the glory days as her Messiah and King. But all of that came crashing down when Jesus was crucified. On Friday, Thomas’ dreams had died.


After the resurrection, Jesus had come and appeared to his disciples in person and shown Himself to them, but Thomas wasn’t there that day. And when the others told him Jesus was alive, he didn’t believe them.


But then Jesus shows Himself to Thomas and shows the nail holes and the scars. And, just like that, Thomas goes from someone too afraid to hope to making the boldest statement of worship contained in the Gospel of John: “My Lord and my God!”


The resurrection turns fear into faith.


If the resurrection can turn Thomas’ fearful skepticism into worshipful faith, if the resurrection can turn the fear of death into the wonder of eternal life, just imagine what Jesus’ resurrection can do for you, for your fears, for your future, and for your life?


3) Peter’s Encounter:


Peter was another of Jesus’ disciples. And on the night before Jesus was betrayed, arrested and crucified he’d made some bold pronouncements. He’d told Jesus that he’d never disown Him, that he’d stand by His side no matter what, that he’d die for Jesus.


But when the chips were down, Peter faltered. He denied Jesus three times. And Peter, realizing how badly he’d failed, went out into the night and wept bitterly.


Then on resurrection Sunday, Jesus restored Peter, saying “you once thought you were strong enough to die for me, and you discovered your own weakness. Follow me, and I will give you the unflinching courage to both live and die for me.”


The resurrection turns shame into courage.


If the resurrection can turn Peter’s cowardly shame into bold courage, if the resurrection can turn the shame of sin into the forgiveness, freedom, and courage, just imagine what Jesus’ resurrection can do for you, for your shame, for your sin, and for your life?


Takeaway: The resurrection is only a fact until Jesus calls your name.


The resurrection is full of the life-changing power of Jesus. But it’s only a fact until Jesus calls your name. And when you hear His voice, and realize He’s come for you, and you turn to Him, it’ll change your life.


Is His Holy Spirit stirring in your heart? Do you yearn to be alive in Christ this day?


John 20-21