Summary: Words uttered at the end of a man's life take on extra significance. What did our Lord say in His final moments? And what do they speak to us today?
Luke 23:26-34 NIV
26 As they led him away, they seized Simon from Cyrene, who was on his way in from the country, and put the cross on him and made him carry it behind Jesus.
27 A large number of people followed him, including women who mourned and wailed for him.
28 Jesus turned and said to them, "Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me; weep for yourselves and for your children.
29 For the time will come when you will say, 'Blessed are the barren women, the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never nursed!'
30 Then " 'they will say to the mountains, "Fall on us!" and to the hills, "Cover us!" '
31 For if men do these things when the tree is green, what will happen when it is dry?"
32 Two other men, both criminals, were also led out with him to be executed.
33 When they came to the place called the Skull, there they crucified him, along with the criminals--one on his right, the other on his left.
34 Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing." And they divided up his clothes by casting lots.
Words uttered at the end of a man's life take on extra significance. What did our Lord say in His final moments? And what do they speak to us today?
Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks...
Illustration: Tell light hearted stories of things that were hard to forgive… Someone ate the last cookie, drank the last soda...
Sometimes we think its unforgivable bc you cant take it back
How do you forgive the unforgivable?
Sometimes people really hurt each other…
How do you forgive in a situation like that?
How do you forgive when by definition what has happened to you is unforgivable?
Setting of the Text:
It’s Friday morning, 9 A.M. And its time.
Just outside the Damascus Gate is that leads to a hill.
Up above is a rocky ledge,
That if studied at a certain angle, looks like a skull
You can see eroded into the limestone two sockets for the eyes,
a place for the nose and maybe a place for the mouth.
Skull Hill, they called it. Golgotha.
It was the place where the Romans held crucifixion.
And Friday was the day and nine o’clock was the time.
The soldiers were ready. They were Roman soldiers.
They were from another part of the world.
They weren’t from Palestine. They weren’t from Israel.
They weren’t followers of the law.
They were simply soldiers who had a job to do.
And this happened to be their job.
They were in charge of crucifixions. They were executioners.
So it’s 9:00 AM
And up the road comes a group of people.
The soldiers know that two of the men being crucified are just average, ordinary criminals, this is what they do. This part is routine.
But the third man, a prophet from Nazareth, his case is different
They know he’s different because of these trials last night
They know this is different because of the buzz of the crowd
There is a man carrying his cross
Because he is too weak to carry his own
It turns out he was a man by the name of Simon
This man Jesus is barely walking, sometimes crawling,
Each step with agony
He had been beaten within an inch of his life,
Literally one more swing whip was considered a death sentence
His back was in shreds.
He was beaten and bruised.
And on his head a crown of thorns
The Roman Soldiers laid the cross out on the ground
And they laid the body of Jesus on the cross
They wrapped rope around this arm and around
They drove the spikes into his forearms and into his feet
With the ropes in place they began to pull the cross up
They dropped it and it fell with a thud
And there was Jesus, beaten, bruised and bloody.
It was only a matter of time before He gave up the ghost
The soldiers stood back, satisfied. A job well done.
Now if you want to talk about something that's Beyond Forgiveness, Unforgiveable
What the soldiers did that day was unforgivable
That’s the definition of what unforgivable is
When you crucify Jesus, God in flesh,
You have done that which is beyond forgiveness.
That, I would think, is truly unforgivable.
And yet, Jesus said, in his first word from the cross,
“Father forgive them for they know not what they do.”
This was the unforgivable sin.
Yet Jesus said, “Father forgive them.”
1. It is possible to forgive the unforgivable by remembering that the people who are hurting you do not really know what they are doing.