Sermons

Summary: WHERE ARE YOU AT IN YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH JESUS? WHY ARE SOME REALLY CLOSE, SOME NOT SO CLOSE AND OTHERS SEEM SO FAR AWAY FROM CHRIST? WELL, WE CAN ALL BE CLOSER IF WE "WANT" TO BE CLOSE TO JESUS.

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TITLE: OUR DISTANCE FROM JESUS 1/27/02

TEXT: MATTHEW 26:36 – 43, 47 - 50

INTRO:

ONE OF MY FAVORITE PASSAGES OF SCRIPTURE IS HERE IN CHAPTER 26 OF THE BOOK OF MATTHEW. I HAVE OFTEN READ THIS PASSAGE AND WONDERED ABOUT ALL THAT TOOK PLACE ON THAT NIGHT.

IT IS A SPECIAL PASSAGE TO ME BECAUSE I SEE THERE MY SAVIOR ON HIS FACE WEEPING AND SHEDDING TEARS MINGLED WITH BLOOD OVER A POOR WRETCHED SINNER NAMED NILES LLOYD.

I BELIEVE IT WAS AT THIS PLACE THAT SATAN AND ALL THE DEMONS OF HELL CAME AGAINST JESUS TO TRY AND KEEP HIM FROM DRINKING THAT CUP AND GOING TO THE CROSS WHERE HE WOULD DIE FOR THE SINS OF ALL THE WORLD. WE ALL OUGHT TO THANK GOD THAT JESUS DIDN’T QUIT!

NOW TONIGHT, LETS READ SOME OF THE HAPPENINGS THAT WENT ON THERE IN THE GARDEN.

READ TEXT: 36 – 43, 47 – 50

NOW TO GET A GREATER UNDERSTANDING OF THE EVENTS THAT TOOK PLACE ON THAT NIGHT, LET ME GIVE THEM TO YOU IN THE PROPER CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER.

1. JESUS MET WITH DISCIPLES IN THE UPPER ROOM AT PASSOVER

2. THEN ACCORDING TO JOHN’S GOSPEL, HE AROSE AND GIRD HIMSELF WITH A

TOWEL & WASHED DISCIPLES’ FEET

3. THEN AFTER THE FOOT WASHING, THEY HAD COMMUNION

4. JESUS THEN TOOK THE SOP AND DIPPED IT AND GAVE IT TO JUDAS AND

SAID, “WHAT THOU DOEST, DO QUICKLY.” AND JUDAS WENT OUT THAT

NIGHT TO BETRAY THE LORD JESUS.

5. THEN THE BIBLE SAYS THAT HE AND HIS DISCIPLES LEFT THE CITY OF JERUSALEM AND WENT THROUGH THE EASTERN GATE AND TO THE GARDEN OF GETHSEMANE.

NOW WHEN JESUS LEFT, 11 OF HIS DISCIPLES WENT WITH HIM, JUDAS AS WE KNOW WENT TO BETRAY HIM. AND HERE IS WHAT I WANT YOU TO SEE.

1. THE EIGHT

IN VERSE 36 HE TOLD 8 OF HIS DISCIPLES TO STAY ON THE OUTER PERIMITER.

2. THE THREE

IN VERSE 37, THREE OF HIS DISCIPLES WENT DEEPER INTO THE GARDEN, THAT WAS PETER, JAMES AND JOHN.

3. THE ONE

AND THEN IN VERSE 39, WE FIND THAT JESUS WENT A LITTLE FURTHER AND WAS THERE ALL ALONE.

SO HERE WE HAVE IT, A GROUP OF 8 ON THE OUTER EDGE OF THE GARDEN. A GROUP OF 3 A LITTLE BIT DEEPER AND THEN YOU HAVE JESUS ALL ALONE INTO THE DEEPEST PART OF THE GARDEN.

AND THESE 3 GROUPS IS WHAT I WANT TO FOCUS ON TONIGHT.

NOTICE FIRST OF ALL THEIR –

I. DIFFERENCE IN POSITION

AS YOU VISUALIZE THIS GARDEN, YOU SEE JESUS THERE AT THE INNER CIRCLE. AND IT IS INTERESTING TO NOTE THAT THE SMALLEST GROUP OF 3 DISCIPLES ARE CLOSER TO JESUS THAN THE OTHER EIGHT. AND AS I READ THAT, I CAME TO THE UNDERSTANDING THAT THOSE 8 DISCIPLES WHO WERE THERE ON THE OUTER PERIMITER OF THE GARDEN OF GETHSEMANE WERE CLOSER TO JUDAS THAN WERE THE OTHER THREE!

NOW THESE 8 WERE NOT –

* AGAINST JESUS, THEY DID NOT SPEAK AGAINST HIM

* THEY WERE NOT BLASPHEMOUS AGAINST CHRIST OR ANYTHING LIKE THAT

BUT THE POINT I WANT ALL OF US TO SEE IS THIS: IT WOULD NOT HAVE TAKEN TO MANY STEPS TO JOIN UP WITH THOSE WHO WERE ON THE OUTSIDE OF THE GARDEN. JUST A FEW MORE STEPS AND THOSE 8 WOULD HAVE YOKED UP WITH THE LIBERALS, JUST A FEW MORE STEPS AWAY FROM JESUS AND THEY WOULD HAVE YOKED UP WITH THE WORLD.

OF COURSE THE POINT IS THIS: YOU AND I AS CHRISTIANS NEED TO GET AS CLOSE TO JESUS AS POSSIBLE AND STAY THERE AS LONG AS POSSIBLE.


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