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Summary: The cross is about a holy God, a sinful people, and the God-man Savior, Jesus Christ, providing reconciliation between God and man by providing the ultimate sacrifice for sin. In order to better understand the events of Calvary, we can look at some of the

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The Journey to Calvary

(Mark 15:21, Luke 23:26-31, John 19:19-22)

INTRO

1. Calvin Miller said, "One cannot even begin to understand the life of Christ without understanding His death."

2. JUST FOR YOU

In Peggy Noonan’s book When Character Was King, she tells about a meeting between President

George W. Bush and President Vladimir Putin of Russia. It was their first meeting as world leaders

and Bush wanted to be sure they connected-- that they looked for depth of soul and character, not

simply had a political meeting.

Bush brought up a story he had read about Putin. His mother had given him a Christian cross that

Putin had had blessed while in Jerusalem. Bush had been touched by the story.

Putin told a story in response. He had taken to wearing the cross, and one day had set it down in a

house he had been visiting. Strangely, the house had burned down, and all Putin could think about

was that his cross was lost in the ruble. He motioned for a worker to come to him, so he could ask

him to look for the cross. The worker walked over to Putin, stretched out his hand, and showed him

the already recovered cross.

Putin told Bush “It was as if something meant for me to have the cross,” inferring that he believed in

a higher power.

Bush said, “Mr. Putin, President Putin, that’s what it’s all about—that’s the story of the cross.”

The story of the cross is that God intended it just for you.

Source: SermonCentral staff. Citation: Peggy Noonan. When Character Was King, pp 306-307. New

York: Viking, 2001.

3. A cartoon has been found in the ruins of ancient Rome showing how crazy the Christian message seemed to the people of that time. It’s a caricature of Jesus’ crucifixion, showing a man’s body hanging on a cross – but the body has a head of a donkey. Standing to left of this cross is a man with his hands raised in worship. Underneath is the inscription, “he worships his God!”

4. As we head into the crucifixion and then resurrection of Jesus Christ, I find these portions evoke emotions like no other. But I also know we do not want to zip past the death of Christ to celebrate the Resurrection. We need to pause and ponder.

MAIN IDEA: The cross is about a holy God, a sinful people, and the God-man Savior, Jesus Christ, providing reconciliation between God and man by providing the ultimate sacrifice for sin.

TS------- In order to better understand the events of Calvary, we can look at some of the persons involved in that traumatic but precious scene.

I. Simon the Cyrene (Mark 15:21)

1. Cyrene. Libya

2. A Jew in town for the Passover/Feast of Unleavened Bread, first strong looking guy who was walking by….

3. This innocent bystander would likely become a follower of Christ….Mark points out the names of his sons as though they were known to the church

4. Romans 16:13

5. This horror turned out to be a blessing for Simon; indeed, God often uses trauma and hardship in our lives to draw us to Himself….He shakes us to wake us…

6. Ray Botz’s song, "Watch the Lamb," portrays this event well…

Application: Some of you have a testimony like Simons’—a tragic or traumatic experience shook you and awakened the sense within you that you need God….maybe that awful thing that happened ended up being the best thing in your life!


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