Summary: To stress the importance of receiving salvation so that we may be paradise-bound.
The 3 Crosses
Text: Luke 23.33-43
Thesis: To stress the importance of receiving salvation so that we may be paradise-bound.
(1) One of the scenes of the crucifixion that has always stood out to me involved the 2 thieves between whom Jesus was crucified.
(2) Let us note the 3 crosses and what they represent:
I. The Cross of Redemption –
A. This is the cross of Jesus.
B. On this cross, the lamb of God was sacrificed (cf. John 1.29).
1. His blood was shed “for the remission of sins” (Matt. 26.28).
a. There was no other that we could be saved.
b. Thus, God sent Jesus (John 3.16) and Jesus was willing to lay down His life for us.
2. He tasted death for every person (Heb. 2.9).
II. The Cross of Rejection –
A. This is the cross of the first thief – “One of the criminals who were hanged there was hurling abuse at Him, saying, "Are You not the Christ? Save Yourself and us!”
B. How many people today reject Jesus?
1. The rich young ruler went away sorrowful (Mark 10.17-22).
2. “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, the way a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were unwilling” (Matt 23.37).
III. The Cross of Reception –
A. This is the cross of the second thief – “But the other answered, and rebuking him said, "Do you not even fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? And we indeed are suffering justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong. And he was saying, "Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!” (Luke 23.40-42).
B. When we receive Jesus, then we are paradise-bound (v. 43).
C. How do we receive Him?
(1) Jesus died for you!
(2) Which cross represents you – rejection or reception?