Summary: A Christian’s life is lived in battle until the day of glory.

Sermon: "Shelter on the Stormy North Side of

Jesus" Rev. David P. Anderson

Isaiah 43:6-21; Phipl. 3:8-14; Luke 20:9-19

We read again from God’s perfect Word,

recorded in the Gospel of Luke, and we read

in Jesus name: 17 Jesus looked directly at

them and asked, "Then what is the meaning of

that which is written: "’The stone the

builders rejected has become the capstone’?

18 Everyone who falls on that stone will be

broken to pieces, but he on whom it falls

will be crushed." (Luke 20 NIV)..

One of our favorite Lenten Hymns–one we all

love to sing–is "Rock of ages cleft for me."

This morning I would like to ask you how you

would picture Jesus as a rock?

Does your picture of Jesus as a rock look

like a stone, smooth on all sides... with no

sharp edges... never cutting or hurtful?

Or is your picture one of a beautifully cut

gem, polished and sparkling.. a Jesus framed

and adorning our walls, but like an ornament,

makes little practical difference in our


Or is your picture of Jesus as the rock, one

of a white stone, finely chiseled; with

square, sharp edges and easily made to fit

the places where we want Him to support our

lives... to bear us up.... to make us strong?

Is your picture of Jesus that of a jagged

rock, cutting and cruel, bringing difficulty

and hardships into your life?

When I picture Jesus the Rock, I see a great

mountain o stone, like Mount Rushmore.

To the south of this great mountain of rock,

and facing heaven’s glory, I see trim, tight,

shining, well cut and polished edges,

sparkling like the facets of a great jewel.

But to the north, where humanity lives in a

cleft, I see a rugged, threatening, terrain

with cliffs, jagged rocks, and dangerous


Where did we ever get the idea of the "Gentle

Jesus, meek and mild" except that we want to

see Jesus from the south side... in heaven’s

light... sparkling in the beauty and glory of

eternity? This isn’t where we presently

live, so we’d better see our Lord as He saw

himself--a suffering servant to all humanity.

Jesus did not speak of Himself as a smooth

rock, or a beautiful rock, or a stone

builders’ want to place in their walls! No!

He is the rock of granite who causes our

conceits and ambitions to be broken to pieces

and crushed under a servant’s weight. He is

the stumbling block of God’s concealed,

murky, sacrificial presence within a world of

transparent selfishness and greed.

All through the Scriptures we hear the sound

of people stumbling.... Nicodemus,

bewildered! A young man sorrowful, for he

was very rich; James and John, tripping over

ambition; Peter, afraid in the firelight...


The disciples, sullen and angry, gathered

after the crucifixion around the table with

the dust of the road still on their feet....

Thomas, shaking his head at the news of the

Resurrection; Paul, on the Road to Damascus,

"breathing out threats of slaughter." And

poor John Mark, who, "departing from them

returned to Jerusalem."

We ourselves, disappointed with how God has

acted at critical times in our lives...

bitter, neglectful of worship, and doubting.

We stumble over the north side of Christ the


Jesus–like a mountainous block of granite-~->

at the north side rough-hewn, discarded, and

put out of mind. Workman stumble over it.

Glory seeking Christians, with infinite

pains, try to rid themselves of it; but the

ropes break, the girders give way, and it

crashes down as we are reminded that we live

on the Stormy North Side of Jesus.

On the stormy north side the prophets lived

and brought God’s holy word to the people.

God loved these men of flesh and blood, and

considered them friends. But on the stormy

north side they were beaten, abused, and

ridiculed-- even killed.

The stormy north side of Jesus looks like

Calvary’s mountain and we don’t much like to

see it. We don’t want to live there and we

become angry when the cold winds of suffering

and pain beat upon us.

Yet the Great Rock Himself–one side toward

heaven beautiful and bright, & one side

toward Calvary rough and mean–is rolling down

the ages.... rolling down the corridors of

history, and He can’t be stopped!

He rolled down from Calvary’s mountain

covered in blood and gore and paused briefly.

He rolled out of the dark tomb–Satan thought

that he had buried Christ in death, but the

Lord of Life broke the bonds and rolled on

and on...

He rolled through the institutionalism and

superstition of the Dark Ages... and He kept

on rolling.

He rolled as the Jesus of history through the

intellectual and spiritual sterility of Deism

and the Enlightenment... and He kept on

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