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Summary: Today there are three more important words – words of urgency – and they are “LOOKING UNTO JESUS.” They are words of salvation. They are words of encouragement. They are words of direction. They are words for daily living. So let me ask you, “Who are

Introduction

What power just a few simple words have. Many years ago, the Grand Trunk Railroad sponsored a contest for a phrase to put on a sign at a railroad crossing. Many entries were sent in, as there was a $2,500.00 prize for the winning entry. There were various phrases, some long, some not so long, but one that was very short, simple, and to – the – point. The Grand Trunk Railroad paid the prize money for the words “STOP, LOOK and LISTEN.” And thanks to the creative simplicity of the winning entrant, many lives have been saved by these simple words. This is a sign that is posted for all, but now it simply reads “RAILROAD CROSSING.” We are to realize the urgency of the warning simply by experience.

Today there are three more important words – words of urgency – and they are “LOOKING UNTO JESUS.” They are words of salvation. They are words of encouragement. They are words of direction. They are words for daily living. So let me ask you, “Who are YOU looking to?” This sign, too, is posted for all.

Everyone is looking to someone or something. Who or what are you looking to? It may be that you are looking to some individual who seems to have all the answers. Or maybe you are looking to yourself. Maybe you are holding onto things: bank accounts, houses, careers, things. These words, “Looking unto Jesus,” the Jesus of the cross, are just as critical as the ones on the white “X” at the railroad crossing.

Message

A) LOOKING UNTO JESUS when Grieving (John 11:1; 17-21[32]; 22-26) Mary and Martha believed that Jesus had the power to have kept Lazarus from dying, had He been there. Some of you have experienced great personal loss this past week – in verses 21 and 32, Mary and Martha said, “Where were you Jesus? Where were you in our time of tragedy? If you had been on the job, this wouldn’t have happened. Have you ever wondered where Jesus was when you were hurting? He is aware of your burden. He is aware of your sorrow and loss. He is aware of your hurt. And His awareness is not passive. He knows our hearts, and responds to our despair. When you feel that all hope is lost, that is when Jesus comes on the scene and does what only He can do. Have you watched the news or read the articles in the paper surrounding Jon’s death? Everything I have seen and heard is a powerful testimony of the grace of God. The means by which a family can endure such hardship is by LOOKING UNTO JESUS when grieving.

B) LOOKING UNTO JESUS in Temptation or Trials (Hebrews 4:14-15: “Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. [15] For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.”)

1) Looking unto Jesus begins a battle:

a) The flesh and the Spirit are at war (Galatians 5:17: “For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.” )

b) Forces of evil join the battle (Ephesians 6:11: “Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.”

2) The enemy tries to discourage us

a) Attacks our bodies, minds, and families (Job)

b) We are vulnerable when we are depressed

3) When you are defeated, LOOK UNTO JESUS

4) He will drive the clouds away

C) LOOKING UNTO JESUS for Salvation (John 3:14-16: “And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: [15] That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.[16] For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”)

1) Nicodemus and his search for eternal life

2) He was confused by “Ye must be born again.”(how can a man be born when he is old?)

3) Jesus makes the new birth plain

a) He uses and Old Testament illustration

b) The fiery serpents of Numbers 21:4-9: “And they journeyed from mount Hor by the way of the Red sea, to compass the land of Edom: and the soul of the people was much discouraged because of the way. [5] And the people spake against God, and against Moses, Wherefore have ye brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? for there is no bread, neither is there any water; and our soul loatheth this light bread. [6] And the Lord sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and much people of Israel died.

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