Summary: THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST SHOULD LEAD US TO WATCH AND PRAY!
THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST
GOSPEL: MATTHEW 26:36-46
MARCH 3, 2004 MOUNT HOLLY LENTEN LUNCH
HYMN: JESUS PAID IT ALL 210
INTRODUCTION: A few years ago, as a part of orientation for new students at Belmont Abbey College, Father Martin, an elderly monk, gave a tour of the monastery. When the group reached the dining room, Father Martin said he could just imagine THE LAST SUPPER.
Jesus knew what lay ahead of Him, and looked at each of His disciples. He looked at some and thought – You will fall asleep in the garden while I pray; of another – You will doubt and need proof that I have risen; and of another – You will betray me; and yet another – You will deny that you know me.
Then He raised His hand and summoned – “WAITER, SEPARATE CHECKS PLEASE.”
Aren’t we glad today that Jesus paid the bill (IT ALL)!
TRANISTION THOUGHT: Last week we began a journey to the Cross. For some this is a familiar road. For some this is a new journey. For all of us this is the time of the year we remember the Passion of our Christ. This is the time of the year that we fast and pray. Hopefully this is the time of the year that we agonize with our Lord over the price that had to be paid for our sin. Hopefully we remember again and hunger once more to live lives “Worthy of our Calling.” Hopefully, this is the time of the year that we commit once more to faith and obedience, to love and discipleship, and to Jesus and His Kingdom.
Often, we forget the pain and agony that brought our freedom.
OUR TEXT FOR TODAY REMINDS US OF THE JOURNEY OF OUR LORD: HEAR THIS READING FROM THE GOSPEL OF MATTHEW 26: 36-46.
Jesus was a man on death row for our sin. He knew he only had days left until all the sin of humanity would be NAILED to His back, through nails in His hands and Feet. This was not something He was looking forward to, though He had always known that it would end this way.
Let us not miss out on the real humanity seen in Jesus’ earthly pre-resurrected life. Let’s spend some time in pain and sorrow and feel the pain of our Savior, Lord, Brother, and friend.
THESIS SENTENCE: THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST SHOULD LEAD US TO WATCH AND PRAY!
I. THE PASSION OF THE CHIRST IS BETRAYAL (vv. 1-5, 14-16, 21-25, 45b-46)
A. Jesus was betrayed by His own race/people
1. The religious leaders of the day sought His death. verses 1-5
2. Constantly, as we read the life story of Jesus, he is betrayed by His own people. Remember, Jesus said, “Only in his hometown and in his own house is a prophet without honor.” (Matt. 13:57)
3. We know this to be only the beginning as He is constantly under threat of His very life throughout His ministry.
4. Luke 13:31 ff Jesus sorrow for Jerusalem! “At that time some Pharisees came to Jesus and said to him, ‘Leave this place and go somewhere else. Herod wants to kill you.’ He replied, ‘Go tell that fox, I will drive out demons and heal people today and tomorrow, and on the third day I will reach my goal.’”
5. One more thought here about Barabbas: His own people could have let him go, but instead they chose a notorious criminal/prisoner, and cried out Crucify Him.
B. Jesus was betrayed by one of His own disciples (vv. 14-16, 23-25, 45-46)
1. One of Jesus’ most intimate friends? A disciple, one of twelve that Jesus spent 3 years with! A co-worker, one he had sent out into ministry, remember the 72 who went out and came back praising God, but did not continue in the journey. He was betrayed by one of the Twelve that had remained faithful when many had fallen away. (JOHN 6:60-66) JESUS SAID, “YOU DO NOT WANT TO LEAVE TOO, DO YOU?”
2. Jesus was betrayed by Judas! And He had a hard word to say about POOR Judas: verse 24!!
3. Jesus was betrayed by Peter! And HE had already predicted Peter’s betrayal/ denial verse 31!
ILLUSTRATION: Chris Johnson of York, Pa. Reports that Johnny got a part in the big city Passion Play, playing Judas. Evidently the proud parents wanted to see the boy’s name in print, or perhaps a well-meaning friend submitted the story to the press. The local paper ran the story on the front page under the heading, LOCAL BOY BETRAYS CHRIST.
THE TRUTH: WE BETRAYED JESUS!
THE QUESTIONS: How do we betray Jesus? As Christian, his people, his race, as disciples, those who have been in an intimate relationship with Him! Maybe the best question is: Do we still want to betray Jesus?