Summary: The urgent task and maximum priority of the Church is the fulfillment of our Lord’s final instruction. The Way of the Cross does not end at the crucifixion or with the resurrection. It ends 50 days after Passover with the Great Commission. We bleed evangelism.
Message by Eddie Fernandes
(Click series title) Introduction
We end a 12-week journey today. We have been in a 3-month study on the Stations of the Cross. We did not follow the traditional 14 stations. We will also not end at Calvary, as most traditions do. Let me remind you of the 11 places we visited, with different preachers helping us grasp truths at each of those stations. All of these took place within the last week of the life of Jesus prior to His death on a cross. We began with the Last Supper. On the screen you will see a slide with all of our messages to date. I am not going to say all the titles, but I will ask the multimedia team to leave that slide on for 30 seconds: (Click all titles one slide)
• MAY 10: The Last Supper – The centrality of Fellowship (1/12)
• MAY 17: The Garden of Gethsemane – The vitality of Intercession (2/12)
• MAY 24: The Sanhedrin – The cruelty of Injustice (3/12)
• MAY 31: The High Priest’s Courtyard – The essentiality of Forgiveness (4/12)
• JUNE 7: The Via Dolorosa – The universality of Suffering (5/12)
• JUNE 14: The Via Sacra – The nobility of Service (6/12)
• JUNE 21: The place of the skull – The scarcity of Essentials (7/12)
• JUNE 28: The Mount of Calvary – The necessity of Trust (8/12)
• JULY 5: The Garden Tomb – The sagacity of Patience (9/12)
• JULY 12: The Empty Grave – The irrefragability of Victory (10/12)
• JULY 19: The House with bolted doors – The irrefutability of His appearance (11/12)
In each of those places we learned how to respond by studying the response of Jesus. Last week Zaca ministered for the first time in 7 years. I was amazed. Did you enjoy his teaching? He is a critical thinker and an avid reader. In his teaching style he taught us lessons we can learn at the ‘House with the Bolted Doors,’ as the Resurrected Jesus appeared to His astonished Disciples. He taught us there can be no denying the resurrection.
(Click intro title) Today I am going to preach a message titled: The Mount of Olives – The priority of the Great Commission. The Key People we will look at are Jesus and His Disciples. The Key Teaching to be grasped is OBEDIENCE. The Key Scriptures are found in Matthew 28, Acts 1 and Mark 16. This event took place 40 days after the Passover, unlike all of the other events which happened in the space of one week.
Let’s work on the theory defended by some historians. This is just a theory. We cannot pin-point the exact day and year; as such these dates could be out by a couple of years, either way. But this helps us understand. Some believe Jesus rose on Easter Sunday, April 5th, 33AD; or on Nisan 16 in the year 3793 of the Hebrew Calendar. This would have been during the Jewish Festival of Firstfruits. Over the next 40 days He appeared in diverse places to diverse people. His disciples saw him several times, as did His mother and several women. He appeared to two travelers on the Emaus road. He appeared to his family and to doubting Thomas. Finally, he appeared to 500 people at one time. Then, on Friday May 15, AD33, or on the 26th of IYYAR in the Hebrew calendar, He ascended to heaven on the Mount of Olives.
For 10 days following the Ascension His disciples waited in Jerusalem, as He had instructed them to do. Then, exactly 50 days after Passover, and 10 days after His ascension, Jesus sent His Holy Spirit on 120 disciples who were gathered, waiting and praying in the Upper Room in Jerusalem. That day, what seemed to be tongues of fire, descended on those disciples, a mighty rushing wind was felt, they began to speak in unlearned and unknown tongues, and 3,000 people gave their hearts to Jesus. This happened in response to the powerful and anointed preaching of Peter. Thus, the Church of Jesus Christ was born in Jerusalem.
Luke begins his account of the expansion of the Church, called the Book of Acts, by remembering the promise of Jesus. (Click verse a) “On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command: ‘Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’ Then they gathered around him and asked him, ‘Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?’ (Click verse b) He said to them: ‘It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.’ After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight” (Acts 1:4-9 – NIV). Let’s dissect the words of Acts 1:8, phrase by phrase.