Why Are You Weeping?

John 20:11-18

Why Are You Weeping?
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Keep trusting Christ because guilt and shame are defeated by the power of the resurrection. Search sorrowfully no more. See the risen Savior. Speak the news of Jesus’ exaltation.


1. Search sorrowfully no more.

2. See the risen Savior.

Main Idea: Keep trusting Christ because guilt and shame are defeated by the power of the resurrection.

3. Speak the news of Jesus’ exaltation.

  • Automated Transcription
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    Good morning faith Bible Church. welcome our visitors and our guests he has risen. That is, it is the best news, the best news. Friday night, we celebrated the crucifixion. And we left off in Luke 23. With crowds going home beating their breasts. After the events of the week, it's it's really remarkable. They had watched for hours, as Jesus was crucified, in shame, humiliation, he was being mocked and he drank that ominous darkness, pointing to the wrath that he was bearing on our behalf. That those crowds it was a mix of tragedy, conviction, guilt, massive grief. And we left the close followers of Jesus watching, watching closely. They were speechless almost the events surrounding the crucifixion. In for your mind's eye, remember that the cross and the Garden Tomb where Jesus lay were not 50 yards apart. I stood in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre a few years back, which is now this massive shrine, but in it and one corner of it, how big it is. There is a place elevated where Golgotha stood, and sort of down the hill, so to speak, off to the east, I guess from your vantage point to be Golgotha and the tomb. And I heard the song that we sang the other night. I was setting sun last summer and that vision came into my head because as the sun set out in the west, and it shown it's orange light on those Bloods, blood soaked crosses. And the scene is despair. Oh setting sun when will you rise?

    This morning we pick up at the tomb of Jesus. Still in darkness Mary Magdalene had gone with others to finish the burial process and found the stone rolled away. Remember still dark so they sped off and told Peter and John what had happened that the stone was removed. Peter and John race back john wins. Twilight starting to bring shape because this is right outside the western gate in Jerusalem. The most visible first shapes would have been those empty crosses. As they made their way to the Garden Tomb light is coming up and they could see inside clothing and the body gone. Oh, rising sun. Look on what we see now. An empty tomb. The glade grave clothes empty on the floor. John Peter. Remember Jesus promised and they run off to tell the others and we pick up with Mary Magdalene just now arriving was dark first firstlight Coming stand with me for the reading of God's Word. I'm going to read John 20 verses 11 through 18.

    He or she is weeping. But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb. And as she went as she wept, she stooped to look into the tomb. And she saw two angels in white sitting where the body of Jesus had lain wanted to head when at the feet. He said to her Woman, why are you weeping? She said to them, they have taken away my Lord and I do not know where they have laid him. Having said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing. But she did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her A woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking? supposing him to be the gardener. She said to him, Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him. And I will take him, I'll take him away. Jesus said to her, Mary, she turned to him, and said to him, in Aramaic Rabona, which means teacher, Jesus said to her, to not cling to Me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father, but go to my brothers, and say to them, I am ascending to My Father, and your father, to my God, and your God. Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, I have seen the Lord, and that he had said these things to her. So this is the word of the Lord. Oh, thanks, be to God. Indeed. Father, thank you, for your great gift in Christ. Lord Jesus, we thank you you, as eternal God took on human flesh to become the second Adam, the true and better Adam, to live in perfection and be betrayed and mocked and ridiculed and crucified and bear our sin. But Jesus, you lay down your life, and you took it back up. And now, you are risen, ascended and raining. And this weekend is the weekend, Christians celebrate such great and glorious truths that you have conquered sin and death and shame. And now you offer life. And so we pray as we see this, those who have believed this message. Many for decades and decades that you would refresh us again, in these, the most common thing we as Christians want to do is try to get back on the treadmill of self glory and self righteousness and earn some kind of standing. But this reminds us that you have given us all and there are many here on that treadmill, just trying to be good enough, trying to be seen as good enough. And it is. It is an accident, waiting to happen. It is futile, I pray that you would display the full glory of the gospel to shine in darkened hearts so that they would see the light of the glory of Christ, repent, believe and be saved. And we would keep believing lifelong putting everything under and submission to Christ in His gospel. I pray for services going on across the city where Christ is preached, I pray that you would that you would encourage the saints to walk faithfully. And that you would call centers by name like you called Mary's name, that you would call centers by name and many would believe and trust you. We ask this in Christ's name, Amen. You may be seated. Or the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ is the centerpiece of God's plan of redemption. If you're new to the Bible redemption means to be restored in relationship with God. It has many facets and many implications and Friday we touched on the themes of guilt, shame and power. And I want to bring these to you and put them in our view again this morning. I want to speak to the Christian view and today's cultural view. The Christian view laid out by the Bible and everybody feels it in their conscience is that we have offended God and his loss. God is King and law giver. And in the in the beginning he made mankind to be image bearers. To give a reflected glory of God's glorious goodness over all the earth but the first man and women like us, we all have been glory thieves. So not only there is is there broken law but there is robbed glory. And we all then bears guilt and shame under God's gaze King and glorious ruler. And since he is just he must judge and Mary's encounter with the risen Christ speaks powerfully to this. But I also want to speak to the contemporary view, which in many cases is threatening to eclipse the Christian view. We live in an era we have never had so many tools to be seen and heard. Social media, mass media, we've never had so many tools to be seen and heard. And we jump on the same treadmill. But now with amplification. We jump on the treadmill of glory and shame. Everybody here wants to be known for something. We all want to be known for something.

    And yet, what we want to be known for is often what we fail at many feels shame about their body many feels shame about their parenting many feels shame about losing money feels shame about their failures. The glory and shame treadmill, I'm reminded of a quip I heard a few years back. Nobody wants to hear about your workout. Unless you fell on the treadmill. I had a great workout did you fall I don't want to hear about it. Happiness is a treadmill. Happiness is a new law. It's it's criminal to be unhappy about your gender, about your job about your relationships and shame on you for not changing anything that makes you unhappy. Affirmation is a treadmill Shame on you for failing to approve anything someone else somebody else says or does. The happy child is a treadmill. Shame on any parent who doesn't take seriously the happiness of their children. If you fail, you'll get caught and you'll be canceled in the court of public opinion. And you are powerless to find redemption. In the cultural view of the treadmill treadmill, there is no redemption. There's no redemption.

    And so here's the questions. We come to this one today. Are you on the treadmill of trying to be good enough for God? And good enough for others? Are you on that treadmill? Do you feel powerless to be good enough in God's eyes, or in the eyes of others? What Jesus tells Mary changes everything. Like I prayed, one of the most common things. For any Christian that is a person who has professed faith in Christ, given allegiance to Christ surrendered, submitted to Christ is to keep getting back on the treadmill of self glory, self righteousness, self improvement self. It is the most common thing. And the gospel needs to be remembered and rehearsed. To keep us off and trust Christ instead. So this morning, I want to walk through Mary's story and we're going to see three ways to get off the treadmill. We're going to we're going to progress her story through and see how we in turn, get off this debilitating, devastating treadmill. First, search sorrowfully no more, search sorrowfully no more look at how the resurrected Jesus ends Mary's sorrowful search. Verse 11, but Mary stooped, stood weeping outside the tomb. And as she wept, she stooped to look into the tomb. This is heavy sobbing, tears, soaking her robes. Bear in the other women hadn't gone to finish the burial process. And remember, there were no funeral homes. There were no caretakers. Everybody had to do everything themselves. Families had to take care of a body and the accumulation of Friday night's horror. Her beloved Lord, her beloved Robin, I her beloved teacher was crucified and sun was setting time was short, and they needed to get him from the cross to the tomb. And they brief preparations and as the sun was setting in the west With its light on the empty crosses, she had some friends hurried and put the body in but it wasn't finished normally would take much longer time. And so she and her friends are coming and they get to the tomb and the tomb. Stone has rolled away, they go to Peter and John and Peter and John come back, the tomb is empty, and she finally catches up. Peter and John have run off and she finally catches up and she is overcome with sadness and grief because she can't even finish the burial of her beloved rabbi. For context, Mary is Mary Magdalene. She had demons cast out of her, the gospel record of Luke shows and she had a deep love for Jesus and was perhaps his most devoted follower. She peered in remember insha tombs were not tall and grand unless you were very, very wealthy. They were short carved out of stone, with shelves lining the inside, and she stoops to look in. And that sun now rising in the east has finally shed a direct light into the grave, into the tomb. And she sees what Peter and John saw except for two other things, angels see, looks inside. She sees two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus head lane, one at the head, one at the feet, remember these carved in seats? And they're sitting in benches? I don't know if their feet were out. I don't know if they're relaxed. I don't know what the deal is, but they were angels. And they said to her Woman, why are you weeping? Why are you weeping?

    Mary and all of the disciples had heard Jesus, at least three times, predict his arrival in Jerusalem, his arrest, his crucifixion, and His resurrection. And she, like all of the disciples did not have a place. In her understanding. There was no way for her to fathom there would have been no way for you and I to fathom this. This was something out of all expectation. And yet they're asking her the question, trying to push her to answer the question. Why are you so sad? It's not very complicated for Mary. She said to them, they have taken away my Lord and I do not know where they have laid him. Mary's hopes were shattered her rabbi and her savior dead. Why are you weeping? My Lord is dead. I can't even bury him. I can't even finish the process. Some kind of movement, maybe that's the direction of the gaze of the angels, but she suddenly notices someone else's here. Having said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing but she did not know that it was Jesus. I mean, come on, Mary, how could you not know it's Jesus, but none of the disciples really understood they. They're seeing the resurrected Christ. They couldn't even believe that there was going to be a resurrection like this. Jesus resurrected asks Mary a question. Woman Why are you weeping? It's a gentle rebuke. But Jesus is forcing her to rethink who he was. She had come to the grave looking for a body. A what? I'm looking for a body. A dead man. I think this is indicative. It's a picture of what every person on the treadmill is looking for. Every person on the treadmill is looking for a what? Success recognition relief, something that will give some kind of sense of meaning purpose or glory back to self. We're looking for a what? And we all know it's a dead man. We all know in the end, it comes short no matter what you get in any of those things, they are going to end. A number of years ago, I was doing something strange. I was reading the sports section. Okay, that's not strange. But I looked over, I actually had a newspaper. And I was just glancing at the legal notifications, which I never do. And I happen to see one of my high school classmates had filed for bankruptcy. Bankruptcy goes in the public legal notifications. I thought oh, sad. I see my classmate 20 years or more. And then two weeks later, I got the news that he had committed suicide and I put some pieces together I don't really know the intimate details of the story but I kind of know how these things work. Marriages going bad families going bad businesses going bad bankruptcy and the only way he saw out of all of that pain all of that shame was death I'm not saying Mary was suicidal. saying there is something deep within that's looking for what that always ends it is always the treadmill in which you trip up and smash your face on the ground and slide to the back and it's always that and everything that he hoped for. He saw The only relief from it and death it's a grave oh that's gonna center it's a terrible error. I was gonna make this a grave error but to tragic

    Jesus wants Mary not to see a body of what he wants to see wants her to see a who Whom are you seeking? She wants to transform this idea of good and gracious miracle working teacher to exalted Messiah. Whom are you seeking? Now? She's still stuck. In this other loop? She answers back. supposing him to be the gardener. She said to him, Sir, if you've taken if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him and I will take him away. I'm looking for a dead man. Do you have one? If you show me where you put them, I'll see to it that he gets a proper burial somewhere else. And Jesus said to her, Mary called her by name. Can't forget John 10. I know my sheep. I call them by name. And they answer me.

    Sheet turned and said to him an Arabic Rabbi which means teacher it's her beloved teacher. It's the one that she had followed and listened to and served. It was Jesus He's alive. Mary's sorrowful search was over. And it was over in a way beyond her wildest dreams. Mary's problem like most people's problems is that her hopes were set too low. She wanted her miracle working compassionate and powerful teacher back

    but something more is here. How do you get off the treadmill of trying to be good enough with God? How to be good enough in front of other people Listen to Jesus, as he calls your name. He's not giving you a what he's giving you a person himself. Your sorrowful search is over second, see the risen Savior. What is what does this all mean? Jesus said to her, do not cling to me. For I have not yet ascended to the Father, but go to my brothers and say to them, I am ascending to My Father and your Father, to my God and your God. And Matthew's account the women who see Jesus resurrected, fall to his feet and cling to Him and perhaps that's what's going on here. And Jesus makes this really interesting statement. Do not cling to me what does he mean?

    This this statement isn't a mere Stop touching me I have work to do. It I think it has to do with the idea that Jesus would not go back to life as before. Not going back to life as before. There's something more in fact, I think he answers the why that we would all ask him not cling to me by the rest of the explanation. He says I have not yet ascended to the Father. In the biblical storyline just have to hold on just a second of the biblical storyline, after Adam and Eve who were vice regents, princes and princesses under the king to carry out his rule. When they had sinned, their their desire was to stand equal with God and receive glory like God, as well as a host of other things that sin means Jesus God, in person took on human flesh descended. And from the Old Testament to the New Testament, the promise of the Gospel is that God Himself would become the substitute and the sacrifice he would die as a lamb, but he would be exalted from the Old Testament point of view, the death and resurrection of Jesus was the death and exaltation of Jesus. Resurrection is stage one of exaltation. Mary, I haven't been exalted yet.

    My body has risen. But I haven't taken my place at the right hand of the throne of God. You think it's good to be able to hold my feet. But at the exaltation of Jesus, Jesus will send his spirit all over the world. To awaken and transform and empower the proclamation of this gospel. Jesus, in His ascension, would step as high priest, after making purification for sins. He was exalted to the right hand of the throne of God, where he sat down to reign as the exalted high priest, who now perpetually prays for us. That trajectory was always exultation. Jesus was crucified and dishonor, shame, disgrace, he is resurrected in glory and power. Mary, I'm alive. But there's more for me, Mary, and more for you. Now look at these words, go to my brethren. And look at that next phrase, I'm ascending to My Father and your Father. I mean, here are these family titles. My brother and Jesus is calling those immediate 12 And all those who will ever believe but he's talking about those immediate 12 as brethren, brothers, exalted High King, is elder brother to his disciples. I'm ascending to My Father and your Father. Jesus as the second person of the Trinity had enjoyed intimate fellowship with God from all eternity past and now he's saying my father is your Father

    Jesus resurrection has accomplished not just reconciliation of former enemies it has done that but not just that, but adoption of orphaned children into the family of God. It is accomplished the adult option of all believers into the family of God I mean pause and let that sink in. By faith in the risen Christ, sins are forgiven relationship restored sonship granted and in terms of shame and honor, there is no higher honor and all existence to be called a child of God. And, and what is a child of the king called? A prince or princess. I mean, ladies, twirl in your dress, twirl in your dress, you're a princess to the king. What a glory what an undeserved, unmerited glory. Romans 829 says that Jesus will be the firstborn among many brothers. Guilt and shame in the traditional Christian sense are hereby dealt a death blow. Yes, the sin of your past, the apostle Paul says the sin of your past is something you still feel shame for. It's still embarrassing. To see your sin of the past and see the cross is something that's still heavy and grievous to you. But one day, when you are face to face and you see the full glory of God, the full transmits transformation will happen and you will be fully glorified and that won't be remembered anymore

    guilt taken shame, obliterated. Guilt and shame in the contemporary sense of shame and honor, we have an increasingly shaman honor culture, many cultures have had it. Ours is increasingly that way.

    It's given a deathblow however you are seeking to be known or to be honored. However, you are seeking honor and fleeing shame and the court of public opinion is now futile. Whatever you're trying to do to show God and others that you're worthy is futile. But if you if you surrender and submit to King Jesus, He will clothe you and righteousness and honor. what a what a glorious answer to her grief. And notice the second half of this, we have the family language. And then he says to my God and your God has echoes of this ancient covenant from Abraham calling a people I will be their God and they will be my people. Jesus would ascend to give the ongoing help and aid his people needed. And for Mary's part, her hopes had been too small. She was looking for a good man and great teacher. But she was expecting life as usual. She sees Jesus life as usual plus a little bump of happiness. He's alive but this Messiah God's Son, soon to be seated at the right hand of the Father and she could live as a renewed and wholehearted worshipper of an exalted Messiah stop cling to me Mary. So I'm gonna give you much more than a human body to touch. Sorrowful searches over guilt and shame are gone. life with Jesus, the older brother and God the Father has begun in full and undeserved, unmerited honor is bestowed in the court of public opinion no longer shackles the children of God. How are you resonating?

    Across my page, if you have your Bible, John 2031 gives us the purpose first of the whole book, but it's right in this context. Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book. But these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, exalted Son of God and that by believing you may have life in his name if you have not believed that Jesus is the Thomas King, the Son of God, raised and ascended. If you have not believed that he is calling your name do you hear him calling your name? Just like he called Mary's name. He's calling your name. repent, believe me. Do what John or do a Thomas did just verses before my Lord and my God. John 2031 is not an entry verse for salvation. It is certainly that but it's not just that. It's the foundation verse For true hope and satisfaction believe now keep believing. Keep believing, keep believing. Stay off the treadmill of self righteousness, self glory.

    keep trusting Christ because the guilt and shame are defeated. So if we have a big idea, there's the zit keep trusting Christ because guilt and shame are defeated by the power of the resurrection.

    We all still sin, there is indwelling sin in fact that those in Christ say, that's about a year into me being a Christian. I came to this hard realization that there were some sins I might just battle the rest of my life. I thought I'd be better than this. 35 years into being a Christian, I still think I thought it'd be better than this. And it's so natural, to try to re earn what Christ earned. Ha. We need this. For the contemporary view, its laws of good looks, good health, environmentalism, winning, affirming. Happiness, there is always a new way for you to break the cultural rules. And there's always a new way to be humiliated and ashamed. There's always a new way to be punished and treated as somebody beyond redemption. There's always a new way for you to be canceled. But here's the glory of the gospel. If you are in Christ, you share in his honor, and His glory. If you believe on Christ, guilt and shame had been given a death blow by his powerful resurrection from the dead, which leaves you with the third way to get off the treadmill. Speak the news of Jesus resurrection and ascension. I mean, you may not have realized it but the best way to get off the treadmill of being good enough for God and good enough for others is to start trumpeting the glory of Christ to everybody that you know, get the tension off yourself and get the attention to Christ start trumpeting Christ and His grace and His greatness and His wondering is on his return to judge and his return to restore start trumpeting that. He says to her go to my brothers and say to them I am ascending to My father and your father to my God and your God and Mary Magdalene went she went she announced to the disciples keeping breath and everything I have seen the Lord

    listen the whole thing he told me what do you finally what do you do when you finally see clearly that Jesus was raised from the dead when you finally see that you have forgiveness adoption reconciliation to a loving God and Father. You go tell people

    I noticed that we all have a propensity to want to tell you about something I've noticed in the last number of years, stickers are really popular. They're really popular. Like you get a water bottle and you got to put stickers on it. People People like to give attention to something body art stickers, you know you go to your you go to your coffee shop not where you get body art. You go to the tattoo shop and you want to show something off and I don't I'm not saying anything up or down about that. Nor am I saying anything up or down about stickers but you all get the picture. Everybody wants to plaster something with stickers. The problem I have with that as they're all like three to five bucks. And I'm cheap. I just want free stickers. But I want everybody to know what good coffee is. Fair enough. No judgment on that. Whatever sort of thing you love, you are wanting to show off. So we have this we have the answer to the treadmill, everybody is on

    how many people you know, are blind to their sin guilt before God? How many people do you know who spend hours and hours seeking to get likes and followers? How many are suicidal and sorrowful, searching for an earthly salvation, but knowing they only have a dead man. It can only it's going nowhere. How many live and die for the approval of man? How many search for inclusion by being really good at something or by being a winner? What Jesus says here to marry is I am everything you're looking for. And if you come to me, you share in all of it. This is a promise for you and good news for your neighbors, your family, your friends, and your co workers. Philippians 320 says but our citizenship is in heaven. From it We await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body by the power that enables him to subject all things to himself. This is the remaining hope for us. Your sorrowful searches over see Jesus clearly. Go tell people. Father, thank You for the glorious grace of this gospel message to marry. Thank you for calling my name. The brothers and sisters who are gathered here today are thankful for the day you call their name. And I pray for some sitting here that they would answer the call. And I pray then that we would, as those who are redeemed seek to live for you and your glory and what we do and what we say. Instead of retreating from a world that we think is going to hell in a handbasket. Help us run with boldness to bring the good news wherever it's needed. We ask this in Christ's name.


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Dan Jarms

Dr. Dan Jarms is teaching pastor and team leader at Faith Bible Church in Spokane Washington, as well as associate dean at TMS Spokane. He has been married for over 30 years to Linda, and has three adult children. He earned his B.A. in English at the Master’s College, B.Ed. at Eastern Washington University, M.Div and D.Min in Expository Preaching at The Master’s Seminary. His other interests include NCAA basketball, gardening, brick oven cooking.

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