Summary: Here’s an Easter time message that deals with the differences between the three who died on Golgotha Hill and the differences between the saved and the lost.

"What Can We Learn From The Three Crosses?"

Luke 23:32-56

And there were also two others, malefactors, led with him to be put to death. [33] And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary, there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the other on the left.

[34] Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots. [35] And the people stood beholding. And the rulers also with them derided him, saying, He saved others; let him save himself, if he be Christ, the chosen of God. [36] And the soldiers also mocked him, coming to him, and offering him vinegar, [37] And saying, If thou be the king of the Jews, save thyself. [38] And a superscription also was written over him in letters of Greek, and Latin, and Hebrew, THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS.

[39] And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If thou be Christ, save thyself and us. [40] But the other answering rebuked him, saying, Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation? [41] And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this man hath done nothing amiss. [42] And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. [43] And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise. [44] And it was about the sixth hour, and there was a darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour. [45] And the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was rent in the midst.

[46] And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the ghost

There are many ways to die.

It might be due to an accident.

We had a terrible tragedy this week in Edwards County.

A woman mowing a pond bank was killed

when the mower tipped over on her.

Before help could arrive...

leaking gasoline exploded and she burned to death.

Ironically...her first husband was killed

when he fell in a construction accident.

And this woman’s 2nd husband lost his first wife

when she was struck by a train.

You might die because of some disease.

It might be due to cancer..heart attack...a stroke.

Your death could be due to old age.

Or....there’s the possibilty that you will die

because somebody might kill you.

Perhaps a doctor will make a mistake.

Maybe somebody will become intoxicated

and crash his vehicle into yours.

Maybe someone will murder you in a robbery

We really don’t want to think about things like that.

Though there are many ways to die

there are only 2 possible conditions

in which one might meet the hour of death.

We see each of those two conditions in the text for today.

But before we look at the text more closely,

let me share the story of 3 young men.

Bill, Ted, and Jimmy Marks were brothers.

Though they lived in East St. Louis...

they seemed to have a bright future.

They came from a good Christian home.

They were loved by their parents.

Their father had a good job.

Bill was the oldest brother.

He was a good boy.

But his younger brothers..Ted & Jimmy were rascals.

When Ted & Jimmy grew into their teens,

they joined a gang in East St. Louis.

They became involved in gang fights.

They went to wild drug parties.

By the time they reached the age of 16...

Ted & Jimmy had both fathered several children.

Both boys had police records

because of the numerous crimes they committed.

Bill Marks tried desparately to persuade his brothers to change...

but they just laughed at him.

In a real sense, the elder brother Bill

represents the attitude, actions and experience of Jesus Christ.

Jesus came to offer us a different, better and Godly way of life.

He, too, was rejected and laughed at.

His plea fell on deaf ears.

One night, Ted & Jimmy attempted to rob a gas station.

During the robbery...

Ted Marks was shot and killed.

He had not accepted Bill’s offer of help.

Ted Marks died in his delinquency.

A similar situation shows up in today’s Bible text.

In spite of all Jesus’ grace, intent, desire and ability to save

we see 1 man rejecting Him even unto death.

Let’s consider the first man.



Verse 39:

And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If thou be Christ, save thyself and us.

· Isn’t this amazing?

· There he is hanging on a cross.

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