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Summary: Sermon 7 of 7: Why did Jesus come?

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John 18:37

I Am Come To Bear Witness To The Truth

Woodlawn Baptist Church

August 21, 2005

Introduction

Today as you consider this message, the last of seven messages that have tried to answer the question, “Why did Jesus come to earth?” I trust that you have had the opportunity to get a better look at the redemptive work of Christ. I believe there are few things more lacking in the world today than an understanding of what Christ has done for us, and though we can never fully understand these things, we ought never to be content to remain indifferent to the magnitude of Christ’s love for us. Just as surely as there are some who do not understand, many do not want to understand them and therefore have little appreciation for Christ, His work on our behalf, or for the task to which we have been called.

Jesus said that He had come to fulfill the Law. He fulfilled many of its prophecies and will fulfill the remaining. He is the Savior to whom the entire Old Testament points. He said that He came to call sinners to repentance. You were created for communion, for intimacy with God the Father, but in your sin you are unfit and unworthy of His presence. When Christ came to earth He shattered all of man’s misconceptions about your worthiness as He gave Himself freely to men and women whose lives were filled with sin and shame and He communicated His desire to commune with those very people. It is not a clean life or one filled with good deeds that God accepts. Rather it is the man or woman who is able to admit what they are in the eyes of God and repent of it and trust Christ who enjoys the fellowship of God.

Jesus said that He came to send a sword. The life of the child of God is an invitation to suffer as we follow Christ. He never promised to you or me a life of peace and prosperity. Following Him involves sacrifice and loyalty at all costs. He came to seek and to save sinners. Again, there was no shortage of sinners, but there has always been a shortage of people who will admit they are sinners. Jesus said that He came for judgment. He came as the Light of the world, and those who would willingly step into that light receive eternal life free from the penalty of sin, “but men loved darkness, rather than the light,” and it is that love for darkness that condemns a man to God’s judgment.

In my last message I told you that Jesus came that you might have life, and that you might have it more abundantly. He wants you to experience Him in His fullness. While Satan offers you empty and dead religion, Christ offers you a dynamic, personal relationship with Himself. He offers you more than you can imagine, more of His purposes and His powerful presence than you have ever known. So many people, even some of you are happy to stay in your limited experience of God and some of you even think that knowing Him in a greater way is unnecessary or extreme, but it is abundant living at its core and the only way it comes is to spend much time with the Savior, know Him and learn His voice.

In the text we’ll read today, Jesus makes a statement that I have come to believe encompasses all of these things and even more. At this point in the book of John, Jesus and His followers have observed the Passover meal; they have been to the Garden of Gethsemane where Jesus prayed in agony to the Father. Some time afterwards Judas Iscariot led the angry mob out to the garden where they arrested the Lord. He was taken in the early morning hours before the High Priest, where He was unjustly tried and condemned. He was then led to Pilate, evidently around 6:00 a.m. I’d like for us to begin reading in verse 28.

“Then they led Jesus from Caiaphas unto the hall of judgment: and it was early; and they themselves went not into the judgment hall, lest they should be defiled; but that they might eat the Passover. Pilate then went out unto them and said, What accusation bring ye against this man? They answered and said unto him, If he were not a malefactor, we would not have delivered him up unto thee. Then said Pilate unto them, Take ye him, and judge him according to your law. The Jews therefore said unto him, It is not lawful for us to put any man to death: that the saying of Jesus might be fulfilled, which he spake, signifying what death he should die. Then Pilate entered into the judgment hall again, and called Jesus, and said unto him, Art thou the King of the Jews? Jesus answered him, Sayest thou this thing of thyself, or did others tell it thee of me? Pilate answered, Am I a Jew? Thine own nation and the chief priests have delivered thee unto me: what hast thou done? Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence. Pilate therefore said unto him, Art thou a king then? Jesus answered, Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Everyone that is of the truth heareth my voice.”

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