Summary: Love of Christ towards enemies, criminal, family, God the Father, and us is witnessed in His seven final sayings while on the cross.
Great Love Witnessed in the Seven Sayings of Christ While On the Cross
by Thomas A. Gaskill
Good Friday Service, April 22, 2011
Slate Valley Baptist Church – Oxford, Kansas
[[Background: Agapao is one of the four main Greek verbs for love. It and derivatives of it are the most common Greek words translated as “love” in our English translations of the Greek New Testament. The writers of the New Testament needed a word to designate God's unique love and so they chose the word “agapao” due to its vague meaning in secular Greek; now it is a word specifically designating God's unconditional, benevolent, sacrificial, willful love towards His people; and in turn, His love flows through His people in love back to Him, neighbor, and self. Agape, which is a noun derivative of “agapao” is very rarely used outside of Biblical writings during the New Testament times.]]
Ill:When asked how much Jesus loves them, Jesus stretches his arms wide-open with nail pierced hands and says “this much!”
Intro: We will be seeing Christ's love for enemies, criminal, family, God, and us in His final seven saying while on the cross.
Def: Christ's great love is unconditional, benevolent, sacrificial, willful love
Jesus Christ, Son of Man, Son of God was betrayed into the hands of wicked men. He was tried and found guilty only of being innocent.
1.Luke 23:32-39 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. (35) The people stood watching, and the rulers even sneered at him. They said, "He saved others; let him save himself if he is the Christ of God, the Chosen One." (36) The soldiers also came up and mocked him. They offered him wine vinegar (37) and said, "If you are the king of the Jews, save yourself." (38) There was a written notice above him, which read: THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS. (39) One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: "Aren't you the Christ? Save yourself and us!"
Loving His enemies
Christ's love for His enemies compels Him to pray
seeks enemies best interest by asking God to forgive them.
Forgiveness for beating him, plucking his beard, crowning him with thorns, flogging him, spitting on him, taking his garments and putting him to open shame, driving nails through his hands and feet and crucifying him with criminals, mocking him, gambling for his clothing, sneering at him, insulting him – all this even though He never did anything wrong, His entire life was without sin, good, righteous. His life was a life of pure love: he healed the sick, raised the dead back to life, gave hearing to the deaf and sight to the blind, cured the lepers, caused the lame to walk. All His teachings were done with love, nothing but love, love, love.