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Summary: When we view our lives through the cross, we see ourselves the way God sees us.

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“Look at the Cross”

Luke 23:44-49

When we view our lives through the cross, we see ourselves the way God sees us.

Sunday Morning Sermon

2.18.07

Intro:

Clip of the passion of the Christ – scene 28, after the bird and right at the dark clouds – this is where the text starts.

(Start with Title and text)

Discussion:

When I survey the wondrous cross

On which the prince of glory died,

My richest gain I count but loss

And pour contempt on all my pride.

See from His head, His hands his feet,

Sorrow and love flow mingled down;

Did e’er such love and sorrow meet

Or thorns compose to rich a crown?

Were the whole realm of nature mine

That were a present far too small

Love so amazing so divine my soul,

My life my all…

2004 Mel Gibson comes out with this movie about Christ. With the exception of a few scenes it sticks pretty close to the Biblical account – I don’t know if Jesus invented the dinner table – but we could just throw that invention in as bonus. One of the reasons this movie was so controversial was because of who it blamed for the death of Christ – The Jews killed Jesus and therefore all Jews are bad – “I hate JEWS – God loves me.”

But I think it shows clearly the reason he died –

Turn with me to our text this morning – (Advance) Luke 23:44-49 (read)

I want us to look at the cross – I want us to see our lives through the cross – because when we do that, I believe we will see ourselves and the world the same way God sees us.

I see two things about the cross this morning: (Advance)

I. Love of the cross

The Bible says that the greatest a man could love another is when he is willing to lay down his life.

a. God’s love has been demonstrated throughout history

Remember Adam and Eve in the garden – after they sinned – God could have blasted both of them right then and there – We would refer to it as “REBOOTING” – starting completely over – instead he walks with them – He asks them what they’ve done.

Israel as a nation – continued in this cycle of being close to God and far from God – He delivered them from harm and defeat many times.

Joshua Chapter 1 – MOSES died! God calls Joshua to lead his people where Moses couldn’t – God tells Joshua – “Never will I leave you never will I forsake you.” – BE Strong and brave – God gives Joshua this command that wherever he goes – he shouldn’t fear because God is right there with him.

Jonah – Doesn’t want to go to Neivah because those people can’t tell their right hand from their left. He hires 3 pirates who don’t do anything, to go the opposite direction – God sends a big fish to save Jonah because he has a purpose for him. He loved Jonah enough to work his plan through his life.

David fills the book of poetry with four wonderful words – “HIS LOVE ENDURES FOREVER”.

We also have countless NT records of Jesus demonstrating his love, through his kindness, through his teaching, through calling his disciples – knowing that Judas was going to betray him and he eats with him anyway – Knowing that Peter denied him, restores him anyway – knowing that Thomas doubted him, and gives him proof.

b. Our God is a loving God

Paul looks at the life of Christ – and sees God’s absolute love for us.

i. While we may not understand everything he does

Don’t make the mistake of considering yourself beyond his love.

Paul asks the Roman Christians – (Advance) Romans 8:35a Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Skip one verse down…

(Advance)

Romans 8:37-39 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

We are not beyond the love of God.

c. God is deeply concerned about your life

He wants a relationship with you. But he wants it on a higher level. You can fake things with your friends – you can act happy when you are not – you can come into our worship and smile and pretend than your world isn’t falling apart. Pretend like everything is ok – and ok is enough. I think that’s something we learn – I’m quite sure it’s something we learn. When we figure out we were going to have a baby, we read EVERYTHING we could find about babies. I read this that children up to a certain age can’t fake happiness.

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