Summary: The cross is the powerful event of all time and it is meant to move us. (Good Friday 2005)
Unmoved By The Cross
Good Friday - 2005
It was only a few days before His death. Jesus was in Jerusalem. Philip comes up to Jesus and tells Him that there are a group of Greeks who have come to Jerusalem for the Passover Feast who want to see Him. AND - this simple request to see Him, really stirred in Jesus heart… YOU SEE – it reminded Him of the fast approaching hour… (The Hour) WHEN – He would be lifted up… WHEN - all would see Him… AND WHEN - the wall between Jew & Gentile… AND – between man & God, would be removed for all time… To the Greeks request to see Him Jesus replied;
“The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. 24I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. 25The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. 26Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me.
27“Now my heart is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour. 28Father, glorify your name!” Then a voice came from heaven, “I have glorified it, and will glorify it again.” 29The crowd that was there and heard it said it had thundered; others said an angel had spoken to him.
30Jesus said, “This voice was for your benefit, not mine. 31Now is the time for judgment on this world; now the prince of this world will be driven out. 32But I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to myself.” 33He said this to show the kind of death he was going to die. – John 12:23-33
“But I, when I am lifted up from the earth , will draw all men to myself. He said this to show the kind of death he was going to die ”
UNDERSTAND - there is an awesome power in the cross of Christ. IT - is at the cross that sinners are convicted; the arrogant are humbled; the hardened are broken, the skeptic convinced, the weak strengthened and the repentant are forgiven..
Max Lucado in his book No Wonder They Call Him Savior, says of the cross;
The cross rests on the time line of history like a compelling diamond. Its tragedy summons all sufferers. Its absurdity attracts all cynics. It’s hope lures all searchers…
My what a piece of wood! History - has idolized it and despised it; gold plated it and burned it; worn it and trashed it. History has done everything to it but ignore it.
That’s the one option that the cross does not offer. No one can ignore it! You can’t ignore a piece of lumber that suspends the greatest claim in history. A crucified carpenter claiming that he is God on earth? Divine? Eternal? The death-slayer?
Paul wrote the following words in 1 Cor 1:18;
“The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved, it IS the power of God…”
NOW - a crucified Savior does not sound unusual to us… BUT - for a Jew in Paul’s day – it was a total contradiction of terms. It was like saying “icy cold flames or hot ice.” It would be like calling a pizza place and asking for a (small-large) pizza or asking for a (meat lovers- vegetarian) pizza. A - crucified Messiah defied all Jewish reasoning.
YOU SEE - every hope they had in a Messiah was a strong and powerful king coming to defeat their enemies. YES - they wanted a powerful conquering hero and instead they got a stumbling block.. TO - the Jewish mind the cross was a contradiction… AND TO – the Roman mind a crucified God was a joke, it was just plain ridiculous…
QUESTION – what is the cross to you?
Max Lucado shares in one of his books about a time when he was sitting and having coffee with a Canadian college student named Ian. NOW - Ian had grow up in church and had taken courses on theology and he had even at one time wanted to go into the ministry… BUT - he quit because something just didn’t click… HE - asked Max, “What really matters? What really counts? Don’t give me religion, give me what really matters..” Max goes on to say the following….
In your bible of over 1,000 pages what matters? Among all the do’s and don’ts and shoulds and shouldn’ts, what is essential?