Summary: The women who were closest to our Lord reveal to us what the value of the cross is.
Near the Cross of Christ
How do we respond to such a dreadful story?
Three reactions to Jesus:
Pilate: Regretful sorrow.
Chief priests: An offense.(v. 21)
Soldiers:Get what they can take.(v. 23-24)
Women: Faithful until the end. (v. 25)
I.Near the cross, you will find loving care.
(Mary, mother of Jesus)
A.We have high thoughts of Mary, mother of Jesus
“Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God.”?
B.Mary led a very difficult life.
2.A Nazarene: Looked down upon socially.
3.Widow. Loss of her protector and provider.
4. Lost her dream for her son.
IE Jesus becoming a great leader/savior in Israel.
a. Don’t we all have dreams for our children?
- Doctors, lawyers, Prez of US, or pastor of a new church.
- My 8 yr old son will be a NASA engineer.
b.We know we shouldn’t, but we do.
- If they fall short of our plans, we’re disappointed.
c.Imagine Mary’s position!
-Visited by an angel to announce Jesus’ birth.
- She saw Jesus’ signs and miracles.
-May have thought Jesus to be the next great leader of Israel.
-Now, she is watching him die on a Roman cross.
C.Jesus shows care and concern for His mother on the cross. (Jn.19:26-27)
1. Jesus was the oldest son a responsible for his mother’s care.
2.Mary - “Thank you, but what about my crushed heart and devastated spirit?”
"John will care for your needs while I’m gone, but as for your spirit and heart, that’s way I am here on the cross. To heal your hurting heart."
-It was God’s love for us the drove Him.
b.I Peter 5:7 “ Cast all your cares on Him for He cares for you.”
-It His love for us that carries us.
Do you have burdens? Anxiety? Long lasting pain? Bring them to Jesus. He died to bear our burdens.
II.Near the cross, you will find a home in heaven.
(Mary’s sister: Salome)
A. It is believed by some that this is Salome, wife of Zebedee, mother of James and John. (Matt. 27:56)
B. Salome’s story – Matt 20:20-23
1. Parents, you can’t blame her.
2. We’ve wanted the best for our children, as well.
3. She didn’t know what she was asking for.
4. She didn’t get what she asked for.
C. They did get something.
1. “The cup”:
a. To follow in the footsteps of Christ. (verse 23)
b. Doesn’t seem to be much of an honor. Almost a curse.
2. However, we must understand that there is a price to pay for honor in the Kingdom of Heaven.
a. She wanted the glory without paying the price.
b. James and John were willing to pay: “cup”
3. God has a calling for each of us.
4. A position in this life that will reap rewards in the next.
III. Near the cross, you will find abundant life.
A. Before she came to know Christ.
1. Possibly a prostitute.
a. Could be the woman in 7:37
b. Maybe the woman caught in adultery.
2. Definitely had 7 demons out of her. Luke 8:2
a. Not sure what kind of affect they had on her.
b. She was rejected by society.
c.Garesenne Demoniac. 100 demons cast out.
- Compare the two.
d. We know that they must have hindered her life greatly.
- Seven demons might make you the life of the party, but when the party’s over, no one wants to take you home!
B. After she came to know Christ.
2. A follower to the end.
C. What about her past? She didn’t deserve to follow Christ.
1. True, her past seems to be a problem.
a. Ro 6:23 “For the wages . . .”
b. Her problem is our problem Ro 3:23 “For all . . .”
2. Just as Jesus came to heal our hurting hearts as we learned with Mary, He also came to pay this price for our sin.
3. Illus. : Detroit man Nov 2000, saved daughters life by stepping in front of a speeding car.
4. We’ve all sinned and the wrath of God is bearing upon us like that speeding car. But Jesus is there to pull us out of harms way and bear the brunt of this just punishment.
D. We must accept Him. Niccedemus: “You must be born again.”
1. A new life in Christ. I Corinthians 5:17
IV. Near the cross, you will find room.
(Mary, wife of Clopas)
A.“Who is Mary wife of Clopas?”
1. Don’t know. Only mention of Clopas.
2.You’ve heard of a "Name-less face" in crowd.
3. Clopas was a "Face-less name".
4.Could be: cousin, aunt, neighbor, friend, stranger.
B. “There is room at the cross for you.” Hymn
Close with a message of salvation.