Summary: What it must have been like to be a bystander – a part of the common crowd – during this monumental Passion week.
In Jesus' Shoes
4th in Series: “What If YOU Were There?”
Perth Bible Church, April 4, 2010 AM Easter Service Rev. Todd G. Leupold
Mama always used to say: “You don't really know someone and can't really understand them until you've walked in their shoes.” This Resurrection Sunday I'd like us to take some time 'walking in Jesus' shoes' – even if only in our vague imagination. We certainly do not have the time to try to re-experience with Him every step along the way, but we can settle in on several of the most significant moments.
I.) ON THE CROSS
Aside from the physical torture and human indignity, what did Jesus experience on the cross? Why?
A.) His Willful Sacrifice
Mk. 10:45; Jn. 10:17-18; Jn 13:27; Mk 14:32-36; Lk 23:34,35; Isa. 50:6;
1 Pt. 2:23-24
Jesus was nailed to the cross as a willing sacrifice! As unimaginably awful as it was, as absurd as it may sound, Jesus was on that cross ONLY because He chose to be in order to personally offer the only just and eternally effective sacrifice for our sins and transgressions against the law and character of the LORD God Almighty.
This was no mere acceptance of an unexpected martyrdom. It was a planned, purposeful choice made with full comprehension of all it would require.
Mark 10:45 For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life--a ransom for many."
John 10:17-18 This is why the Father loves Me, because I am laying down My life so I may take it up again. No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down on My own. I have the right to lay it down, and I have the right to take it up again. I have received this command from My Father."
Mark 14:32-38 Then they came to a place named Gethsemane, and He told His disciples, "Sit here while I pray." He took Peter, James, and John with Him, and He began to be deeply distressed and horrified. Then He said to them, "My soul is swallowed up in sorrow--to the point of death. Remain here and stay awake." Then He went a little farther, fell to the ground, and began to pray that if it were possible, the hour might pass from Him. And He said, "Abba, Father! All things are possible for You. Take this cup away from Me. Nevertheless, not what I will, but what You will."
Luke 23:34 Then Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, because they do not know what they are doing."
The people knew not, but Jesus the Messiah knew perfectly well. Though it may seem and be believed otherwise, this is all according to His plan and not theirs. Though 100% innocent and holy, Jesus took 100% responsibility for His unjust crucifixion and murder.
Luke 23:35 The people stood watching, and even the leaders kept scoffing: "He saved others; let Him save Himself if this is God's Messiah, the Chosen One!"
The people spoke with mocking, but what they sarcastically challenged is something He very well could have done. For Jesus, however, it was not a matter of what He was capable of doing, but rather of what He needed to do if any could ever be truly saved from condemnation and eternal separation from God in Hell. He chose not to save Himself in order that you and I might have the opportunity to receive His salvation!