Summary: What if, literally, you or I had been there first-hand, up-close and personal? Would it change our understanding? Perspective? Convictions? Priorities? Lives? What if, we were there as one of His disciples?
2nd in Series: “What If YOU Were There?”
Perth Bible Church, March 28, 2010 AM Service Rev. Todd G. Leupold
The Passion is not just about Jesus, His disciples, or the people living in Jerusalem 2,000 years ago. It is every bit as much about you and I here today.
What if, literally, you or I had been there first-hand, up-close and personal? Would it change our understanding? Perspective? Convictions? Priorities? Lives?
What if, we were there as one of His disciples?
I.) REALITY CHECK Mt. 26:17-35; Mk. 14:12-26; Lk. 22:7-30; Jn. 13:1-17:26
A.) A Planned Passion
Every aspect and detail of the Passion events was orchestrated by Jesus Himself, even the arrangements for the Last Supper.
None of this was an accident. Nothing was unexpected or outside of God's Plan from the very beginning.
Even, especially, in these events we are to see and appreciate the absolute Sovereignty of God!
To be His disciple, then, is to accept His Plans in every detail, whether they be small or great, obvious or confusing.
B.) An Exalted Paradox Jn. 13:12-16; Lk. 22:24-30
Before Jesus could be truly exalted, He first had to humble Himself.
Before He could raise up His followers to be exalted with Him, they too must be humbled.
Before He could claim His Throne and begin His Messianic Rule, Jesus must serve.
Before His followers can lead others to follow Him in salvation and sanctification, they must serve in love and humility.
Before He judges, He has come to serve in grace and mercy – especially to the sinful and unclean.
Before we can receive His authority to judge, we too must serve in grace and mercy – especially to the sinful and unclean.
C.) An Encouraged Betrayal Jn. 13:18-27
Even the betrayal was not only planned but encouraged by Jesus.
Not because He liked the idea. Not because He looked forward to it.
But, because it was necessary for the good of humankind.
To do what was right and necessary, to truly live out sacrificial love, Jesus was not only willing to accept but even to encourage that which would be most painful and difficult for Himself.
The disciples witnessed this, but would they follow it's example? Loving God Absolutely & Loving Others Sacrificially. Eventually, most of them did.
What about His disciples today? In this auditorium?
D.) The Old Transformed As New Lk. 22:19-20; Jn. 13:31-35
Compare Jeremiah 31:31-34
The Old, dependence upon the Law to prove one's righteousness, has proven that not a single person in all of human history is capable of living up to God's standards.
A law of letters and effort can not be perfectly kept or maintained by fallen humanity.
Jesus, the Messiah, came to walk before humanity on this earth not simply to set an example of perfection to the law for us to follow in the flesh, but rather to offer His life as a sacrifice in order that we may be given new hearts filled with the Spirit and cleansed of sin by which we may be saved and through which we might live to His honor and glory!
At the Last Supper, the disciples struggled to understand this. Eventually, however, they did. How about you this morning?
The attitudes and actions of the disciples from this point on until Christ ascended to Heaven and sent His Holy Spirit to dwell in and with them demonstrate our inherent weakness.
EVEN when we have all the words, teachings, and example of knowledge and Truth that we need, until we fully believe, experience His redemption and live in the Spirit, we are doomed to despair and failure in one or more of these same ways.
A.) Numb In The Garden Mt. 26:36-46; Mk. 14:32-42; Lk. 22:39-46
The news of Jesus' betrayal and impending death was just too much for the disciples.
Not only did it represent horrible things happening to one they loved, but also a completely unexpected and incomprehensible circumstance that seemingly shattered all of their assumptions, dreams and hope.
How could this be God's plan if it doesn't fit my understanding of what God's plan should and must be?
Why, then, bother doing or thinking anything?
Maybe I should just quit and sleep it off?
B.) Self-Preservation Mt. 26:14-16,47-50; Mk. 14:10-11, 43-46; Lk. 22:47-53;
If I can't control what happens to my former plans and dreams, at least I can still try to control my own future.
The cause is taking a bad turn. Disappointment, suffering, pain and failure seem imminent if I follow through with this group and this leader. It's time to just do whatever I can and whatever I have to in order to preserve and provide for myself.
The thoughts and spirit of a Judas.