Summary: God is more concerned with us being deader than better.
Does God Want Us Better?
Gal. 2.20 NASB
June 26, 2005 Chester FBC, Chester, Illinois Mike Fogerson, Speaker
A Many people wear crosses around their necks or on their ears. We’re so used to seeing this that it doesn’t shock us.
a If we say an electric chair, or hang man’s noose on a golden chain around someone’s neck or bracelet . . . we’re going to notice!
The cross was one of the cruelest forms of execution and it was so heinous that even the Roman empire discontinued it use in 315 A.D.
The cross is regarded as the symbol of Christianity.
1/3 of the Gospels is dedicated to the crucifixion. ½ of Mark!
The Lord’s Supper, an ordinance of this church, is about the crucifixion.
b Most leaders who have influenced nations or impacted the world are remembered for their lives.
Jesus, who more than any other person, changed the face of world history, is remembered not so much for His life but for His death.
B 20 "I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me. 21 "I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness comes through the Law, then Christ died needlessly." Gal 2:20-21 (NASB)
a Paul told the early church that the cross of Christ succeeded where the law of Moses had failed. (ETS)
b God is more concerned with us being deader than He is us being better. (ESS)
C I hope you’ll look for signs of a personal resurrection that has occurred since Jesus became your Lord. (Objective)
a How do we experience a personal resurrection in Jesus? (P.Q.)
b Let’s look at two signs that can help us determine if a personal resurrection has occurred since Jesus became our Lord. (T.S.)
I The first sign that helps us determine if a personal resurrection has occurred in our lives is . . . There has been a crucifixion.
"20 "I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, . . ." Gal 2.20a
A Paul was not literally crucified with Christ.
(He wasn’t hung on a cross alongside Jesus, no where near Golgotha. . . so what does he mean?)
a Crucifixion was a death sentence that was given to criminals when they broke the law. (With exception to treason, Romans citizens weren’t crucified. Dishonorable way to die.)
*Once a person had been crucified, their debt to the state was served. Square with the house again.
b Paul had broken the law (not the law of man, but of God)
The sentence was clear, death. (Romans 3.23)
Jesus served Paul’s sentence for him by being crucified.
Paul’s old self, "old man", died to Christ.
6 Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. 7 For he that is dead is freed from sin. Romans 6:6-7 (KJV)
B The moment we identify with Christ’s crucifixion, we understand the horrific
consequences of our sin.
a We don’t deserve being slapped on the wrist, sent to time out, we deserve death & an eternity in a devil’s hell. (Why? We’ve broken God’s law.)
b We die to self.
Gal 3.13 Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law, having become a curse for us—for it is written, "CURSED IS EVERYONE WHO HANGS ON A TREE"— Gal 3:13 (NASB)
We are relieved from the curse of the breaking of the law: death.
How often are we supposed to be crucified with Christ?
I affirm, brethren, by the boasting in you which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily. 1 Cor 15:31 (NASB)
C A person can commit suicide several different ways (shot, overdose, run out in front of a truck)
a You can’t kill yourself by crucifixion. (After you nail your hand to the cross, you can’t nail your other hand without someone doing it for you.)
b We couldn’t even die for our own sins to pay for them.
Jesus died to pay the sentence of our sins. (Penal)
Paul was crucified with Christ when Christ died. Christ died a Substitutionary death. He died for Paul. He died for you. He died for me.
II The second sign that helps us determine if a personal resurrection has occurred in our lives is . . . There has been a resurrection.
" . . . but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me. " Gal 2.20 NASB