Summary: Whether you see the movie or see the book, one of the things you can’t miss about Christ is His compassion for people.
A. Welcome Guests...
B. Easter + Three services.... for your convenience and our continued growth.
C. Series– For the last couple of weeks we’ve been involved in a series that has been inspired by Mel Gibson’s, The Passion of the Christ. I wanted to make the most out of a great opportunity and simply preach about a couple of themes that were apparent to me as I watched this movie.
D. Next week, my Easter sermon will be Christ’s Passion for Victory! What Christ accomplished on the cross– via his death, burial and resurrection means V.I.C.T.O.R.Y.! And that is not just a cheer for a game, it’s a battle cry for life! Since we’re going to have three services, let me encourage you to invite as many of your friends, family members and co-workers to join you as we continue talking about the Passion of Christ. My goal will be to be very plain and enthusiastic with my explanation of the Gospel of Jesus and his passion.
E. Today, I want us to consider Christ’s passion for People. Now, whether you see the movie or see the book, one of the things you can’t miss is his compassion for people.
I. Christ’s Love for people was clearly seen in his Interaction with People
A. One of the most enjoyable aspects of the film were the flashbacks. In almost every flashback– you saw Jesus demonstrating a passion for people. Remember those flashbacks....
1. Mary his Mother– (John 19:25-27). The first flashback dealt with a humorous scene with Mary his mother
*. Jesus was out back using His carpentry skills to build a table for a “rich man”. (It will catch on)
*. As Jesus comes in for lunch he in ornery like fashion splashes water in his mother’s face and kisses her on the cheek. And you just see his compassion for his momma!
*. That compassion is seen biblically in John 19 when from the cross he makes provision for his mother by saying, “Dear woman, here is your son!” And to the Apostle John, “Here is your mother.”
3. Woman caught in adultery– John 8:1-11 Another flashback dealt with the woman caught in adultery. Instead of giving her what she probably deserved, instead of words of chastisement and condemnation. He spoke words of kindness and forgiveness. (The movie showed that this woman followed Jesus to the end).
4. Thief on the cross– Luke 23:39-43 What about the thief on the cross. There two thieves crucified with him, one on his right and the other on his left. Both mocked him, but one stopped, realized what was going on and asked Jesus to “remember me when you come in your kingdom.” That was an amazing statement of faith and Jesus responded with great compassion. To the thief on the cross he pronounced forgiveness and promised to see Him in Paradise.
5. To all present at the cross– Even from the cross, even while his executioners are still jeering, mocking and laughing, he prays, “Father, forgive them they know not what they do!”
* One of my favorite scenes is when Jesus is on the cross and as the High Priest walks by the cross with his nose in the air, and Jesus prays, “Father Forgive them!” The high priest stops, hears his words and is stunned. Meanwhile one of the thieves that was crucified with Jesus begins to laugh and says to the High Priest, “He’s praying for you!”
6. On and on... We could go on all day talking about seeing Christ’s passion through his interaction with people... The Romans Centurion with a paralyzed servant? Jairus with a dying daughter? Woman with a bleeding disorder? The demon possessed Legion? How about dead little Tabitha whom Jesus raised? The feeding of the 5,000? The father with the epileptic boy? Even the rejecting rich young ruler? The ten lepers? Jesus demonstrated love to every person with whom he had interaction.
Application: What does your interaction with others communicate about you? In the way? A bother? An interruption? Someone to use? Someone to run over? Or someone to love? Christ’s love for people was clearly seen in his interaction....
II. Christ’s Love for people was clearly heard through his Teaching.
A. Matthew 5:43– The Greatest Sermon ever preached.... (The sermon on the Mount) Jesus said, “You have heard that it was said, “Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven.”
1. The Christian life is a life of love. It’s a requirement. His greatest teaching is found in.....