Summary: 2of 6. As Jesus hung on the cross, He voiced particularly important concerns. At the juncture of life & death, matters of greatest significance are prioritized. But What are these as evidenced from the Cross? A Cross-driven Concern of Jesus is Your...
JESUS’ CROSS-Driven CONCERNS-II
Lk. 23:33-49; Jn. 19:17-30; Mat. 27:33-54; Mk. 15:21-39
OR--CONCERNS From The CROSS
We can give generously to national missions thru the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering.
We can ensure that our missionaries are correctly trained for their purpose.
Thru the AAEO, we can make sure that they lack nothing in regard to sharing their ministries in North America.
We can ‘give till it hurts,’ while missing the very reason for giving... that there are literally millions of people who do not know of Jesus!
We can totally miss the BIG news!
Likewise, we can be so caught up in the gruesome brutality of the Crucifixion of Christ, that we miss the Cross-work of Christ!
Jesus’ 7 Words From the Cross:
“Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”—Luke 23:34
“Today you will be with me in paradise.”—Luke 23:43
“Behold your son...”: “behold your mother.”—Jn. 19:26-27
“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”—Mat. 27:45; Mk. 15:33-34
“I thirst”—Jn. 19:28-29
“It is finished”—Jn. 19:30
“Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.”— Lk. 23:44; Mat. 27:50; Mk. 15:36-38
To recognize those things which are of greatest significance to our lives & the lives of others.
We have found that A Cross-driven Concern of Jesus is...
1. Your FORGIVENESS(Lk. 23:34)
2—A Cross-driven Concern of Jesus is...
Your DESTINY/Future/Eternity(Lk. 23:43)
Explanation: (Lk. 23:43)
Lk. 23:32—“There were also two others, criminals, led with him to be put to death.”
:33—“And when they had come to the place called Calvary, there they crucified Him, & the criminals, one on the right hand & the other on the left.”
:39—“Then one of the criminals who were hanged blasphemed Him, saying, “If You are the Christ, save Yourself & us.”
:40—“But the other, answering, rebuked him, saying, “Do you not even fear God, seeing you are under the same condemnation?
This other of the two criminals indeed at least recognized the reality of God. He rebuked his fellow crucified, recognizing that he was hypocritically insulting an innocent person as he was rightly condemned & Jesus was not. The criminal would appear before God & would, in the presence of such perfection, be directly answerable for his sins. Such knowledge should bring a person to “fear God.”
“Both of you will soon appear before God. Jesus has nothing to answer for & you have added this to your other sins.”—RWP
:41—“And we indeed justly, for we receive the due reward of our deeds; but this Man has done nothing wrong.”
:42—“Then he said to Jesus, “Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.”
This criminal had undoubtedly heard, seen &/or experienced the power of Jesus prior to the crucifixion. This man evidently accepted Jesus as Messiah, making his decision while on a cross himself, being faced with the reality & certainty of death. He asked Jesus to remember him in His kingdom. He did not approach Jesus as a lunatic or liar but as Lord.
Although probably not grasping the fullness of Jesus’ Kingdom he grasped it with a trusting heart, much unlike the leaders & crowd which sent Him to the cross & taunted Him.
The criminal recognized that Jesus’ kingdom was not of this earth. He also recognized that Jesus was King in said Kingdom. He also understood enough to know that he needed Jesus’ Kingdom & that he needed Jesus in order to be part of it.
Heb. 4:1-2—“Therefore, since a promise remains of entering His rest, let us fear lest any of you seem to have come short of it. For indeed the gospel was preached to us as well as to them; but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it.” *:43—“And Jesus said to him, “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.””
Jesus responds positively to the criminal’s request. Jesus assures him that he will this very day(upon his death) be with Him in the place He refers to as “Paradise.”
This word gives us a picture of the serenity one experiences upon death—IF they die Christ.
It is, at once, a picture of a planted protected garden, reminiscent of or in actuality, Eden(Gen. 2:8-10, 15-17).
2Cor. 12:1-4—“It is doubtless not profitable for me to boast. I will come to visions & revelations of the Lord: I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago--whether in the body I do not know, or whether out of the body I do not know, God knows--such a one was caught up to the third heaven. And I know such a man--whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows-- how he was caught up into Paradise & heard inexpressible words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter.”