Summary: This message centers around the different individuals and groups of people who surrounded the cross at the crucifixion, and, "They Watched Him There".
“They Watched Him There”
INTRODUCTION: Matthew 27:35-39 – all turn, read.
There was a great crowd who saw the scene at Mt. Calvary that day. On Friday, we celebrate an EXECUTION. There were 3 crosses. Over the middle cross as a sign: “This is Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews”. It was written in Greek, Latin & Hebrew … so ALL could read it. This was His claim … this is why He was crucified. It was the only thing that they could accuse Him of.
What would WE have seen that day?
o A DEATH beyond human comprehension.
o PAIN so intense, it would make us shudder.
o BLOOD running down His brow, covering His hands & feet.
o BEARD plucked out by the handful … beaten … spat upon.
There were many who watched this horrible sight … “They Watched Him There” – 27:36
I.- GOD WATCHED HIM THERE
1.- He saw HIS ONLY BEGOTTEN SON
The crucifixion of Jesus, God’s Son, didn’t take God by surprise. It was prophesied in the Old Testament as to:
o The MEANS … on a cruel cross.
o The TIME … Daniel Chapter 9.
o The MANNER … between 2 thieves.
God looked upon His Son as the FULFILLMENT of all the Old Testament sacrifices … the only ACCEPTABLE sacrifice for the forgiveness of sins. Only the blood of JESUS could do that.
2.- He saw YOU AND ME
When God saw Jesus, He was looking at EVERYONE who would ever trust Jesus for the forgiveness of their sin. That’s why Paul could say (Gal. 2:20) – “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”
When I stand before Holy God, my sin debt will be marked “Paid in full”. WHY? BECAUSE … God saw ME that day … when He looked upon His Son, Jesus.
II. THE ANGELS WATCHED HIM THERE
This must have been a bewildering sight for them! They had worshipped Him from the time of their creation.
o They announced His birth to Mary.
o They reassured Joseph that this was God’s child.
o They witnessed His birth in the stable.
o They told the shepherds to go to Bethlehem.
o They witnessed His baptism … miracles … healings … preaching & teaching ministry.
AND NOW … they witness Him hanging on a cross … suffering in torment & agony. “They Watched Him There” … in wonder & amazement!
III. MARY WATCHED HIM THERE
She was chosen by God to give birth to the Messiah.
She watched Him grow up … and cared for Him.
She heard Him declare, at age 12, “I must be about My Father’s business.”
NOW … she is watching Him as He is DOING His Father’s business … hanging on a cross. What she saw there that day, no mother should have to witness. BUT … Mary was there … she “Watched Him That Day.”
IV. THE WOMEN WATCHED HIM THERE - Matthew 27:55-56
We aren’t told who all the women were who watched Him there that day.
It could have been:
o The woman with the infirmity 18 years … whom Jesus healed.
o The woman whom Jesus raised her son from the dead.
o The woman whom Jesus cast demons out of her daughter.
We aren’t told exactly who all was there. BUT … they hadn’t forgotten Jesus, who changed their lives.
53 days later, there were 3000 people saved on the Day of Pentecost. Several days later, Peter preached again, and 5000 were saved. Just days before the crucifixion, the people had cried our “Crucify Him! Crucify Him!” A few weeks later, over 8000 were saved.
WHY SUCH A CHANGE? Matthew 27:50-53
The earthquake opened up the tombs, and they could look inside, and see the dead bodies of their loved ones. For 3 days, they couldn’t roll the stones back over the entrances to the tombs … it was the Sabbath … the Passover. I’m sure they camped outside the tombs and guarded them for 3 days.
THEN … when Jesus arose from the tomb, the dead came out of their tombs in their resurrected bodies, and went into Jerusalem. IMAGINE seeing the body of your father/mother/child in the tomb for 3 days … they had been buried years before. THEN … they appear to you. They tell you that Jesus is ALIVE … He is the Messiah …He died to pay the penalty for your sin … AND … He arose to give them new life.
Think of the stories they must have told:
o How they had been in Paradise these many years.