Summary: A message examining how Calvary is redemptive in real life...Mary's view of Calvary.
A Hill With A View
A Parent’s View of Calvary
*Significance of preaching about the cross...how the story of Jesus’ death on Calvary is at the centre of the story of redemption. There is no Christianity without the cross.
*Today we start a series...preparing ourselves for Easter...a series about the experience of Calvary, called “A Hill With A View”. In this series we’ll be trying to look at Calvary through the eyes of five different witnesses who were present at Jesus’ death. And in trying to understand what Calvary meant to them personally, we may discover how Jesus’ great sacrifice is redemptive in our own lives.
*Redemptive...a powerful word and concept...meaning that we want to discover how Jesus’ sacrifice brings deliverance and rescue into our lives...how he ransomed our lives with his own...and how that redemption works in the circumstances of our lives. In this series we don’t just want to explore the idea of redemption in theology...but we want to find out how that redemption works in life.
*Today we look at Calvary through Mary’s eyes. Being Jesus’ mother, she has a unique perspective of Calvary. And what her story has to tell us may have application to all who have suffered that special kind of pain that only a parent understands. So today we take a look at a Parent’s View of Calvary.
Led by the Spirit, Simeon went into the Temple. When the parents brought the child Jesus into the
Temple to do for him what the Law required,
Simeon took the child in his arms and gave thanks to God:
"Now, Lord, you have kept your promise, and you may let your servant go in peace.
With my own eyes I have seen your salvation,
which you have prepared in the presence of all peoples:
A light to reveal your will to the Gentiles and bring glory to your people Israel."
The child's father and mother were amazed at the things Simeon said about him.
Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother, "This child is chosen by God for the destruction
and the salvation of many in Israel. He will be a sign from God which many people will speak
and so reveal their secret thoughts. And sorrow, like a sharp sword, will break your own heart."
Now there stood by the cross of Jesus his mother, and his mother's sister, Mary the wife of
Cleophas, and Mary Magdalene.
When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto
his mother, Woman, behold thy son!
Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his
*I wonder what Mary felt as she stood as she watched her son dying on the cross? It’s important to remember that to Mary that’s exactly who Jesus was...her son.
*But in Mary’s experience, what was happening at Calvary was actually the end, the climax, of a long series of events leading to this moment.
*At Calvary, the whole story of Mary’s relationship with her son Jesus looked like a story of loss. She’s losing her son...her son is losing his life. It would be hard...maybe even impossible...to stand beside Mary and try to put a positive theological spin on what she’s experiencing, on what she’s feeling. She’s a parent, after all.
*But Mary’s sense of loss wouldn’t have originated at Calvary...it would have begun a long time before. And strangely enough, it probably was much like the loss that some of you may have felt in your relationships with your own kids.
I. A Parent’s Loss
A. The Loss of Connection
Loss as in the loss of connection.
In the natural course of life your child (for that’s what he’ll always be) develops his own life. He becomes surrounded by his own friends, living his own way, with his own vision of the future.
The inevitability is that a parent is marginalized more and more, relegated to the periphery o f the child’s life. From centre stage to support cast is a difficult transition to make. And from supporting cast to occasional appearance is even more difficult.
B. The Loss of Influence
Loss as in the loss of influence.
There is a strange and unbelievably hurtful sorrow in watching your child take a path that you know will lead to heartache. And it’s agonizing to realize that nothing you say is going to make any difference at all. It’s almost as if you don’t exist as a parent anymore...
With the loss of connection there is a corresponding loss of influence, and your child begins to draw more on the wisdom of his friends and other mentors...instead of on yours.
C. The Loss of Power