Summary: After asking several people on the street what the cross meant to them, the answers were astounding, how would we as Christians answer that question? What does the Cross mean to us.
What’s the meaning of the Cross?
1. To some a symbol, maybe a religious symbol (like the star of David) a reminder, a crutch, a form of punishment, where some nice Jewish boy died years ago.
2. Bible says it is foolishness to them that perish – If you’re looking for some scientific or technical solution to man sin, or to the process of salvation. It is foolishness to you.
3. To the Jews it says the cross is a stumblingblock – I guess you could look at it and say that this would be like us sitting here today with our preconceived ideas about how all of this should work out, and how God should do things. And if He doesn’t do them the way we think He should, or if we think there should be some other way then it becomes a stumbling block.
a. There are a lot of people today that this it true of. Many today will believe in anything to say that the cross is of no effect.
b. I am a firm believer that evolution would be gone today if science had some other way to explain our existence other than God.
4. This morning I want to go back. Back to the cross of Christ, I want to stand there beneath it and look up and see what they saw, hear what they heard.
a. It’s the first century probably a hot sunny day, and the streets are all a bustle.
b. You get up in the morning and maybe you have a lot to get done before Passover begins. But something is going on down the street.
c. This man called “Jesus” sometime during the night has been arrested, while you slept, he has been put on trial and is now walking down the street. Lets pick up right there.
5. Matt. 27.32
a. Your name is Simon. You don’t really know what is going on and you really don’t want to be involved, but here you are.
b. Grabbed by Roman soldiers, screaming and yelling at you to pick up the cross and help this man carry it. (this was really unusual, normally they would carry their own) but this man, was so beaten, bloodied and bruised. That you had to take a second look.
c. Wait a minute wasn’t this the man that was so welcomed into town just days earlier.
i. But now you see a man.
ii. After a night of abuse, after a crown of thorns has been placed on His head, as the blood runs down his back, and he’s stumbling.
iii. You reach out to catch him, and then bear the burden of His cross, your eyes meet and there you are, face to face with eyes of such compassion, a love immeasurable.
iv. You look into the eyes of God, moments before he dies for you and all you can see is LOVE!
6. Arrive at Golgotha
a. The purpose for Jesus coming to this earth was about to be fulfilled. In fact
i. The angels announced “he will save, his people from their sins”
ii. He said Himself, “I have come to seek and save that which was lost”
b. He’s taken and nailed to the cross
i. Lifted between the heavens and earth. Wait didn’t he say “if I be lifted up, all men will be drawn unto me”
ii. I wonder just for a moment…
c. what did Jesus see from the cross.
i. When we look up to the cross, we see the savior of the world, God in the flesh, the Lamb of God
ii. But when He looked down from the cross what did he see.
1. His mom & John
2. Soldiers parting his garments, Pharisees, Jews, Romans, laughing, mocking.
3. Sin, He saw sinners… doing what sinners do. And not even realizing it.
4. And then He did the unthinkable He forgave “father, forgive them they know not what they do”
d. When he said that one of the thieves on the cross beside him heard it, and was amazed. He looked out at the same crowd and probably wondered how in the world this man could have that kind of love unless truly he was the Son of God.
i. The thief’s heart broke, he repents, and accepts Christ
ii. No cleaning up, no church membership, no good works, just Christ.
iii. Peter fled, the disciples hid, Jews mocked, People laughed, and the Thief went to spend eternity with God…
7. After just a very short time on the cross
a. The sins of the world are placed on His shoulder “my God, my God”
b. And “it is finished” tetelestai - paid in full, redeemed, completed purchase, whoa – the KING OF KING Paid the price for my sins and yours ‘ THAT’S SOMETHING TO GET EXCITED ABOUT’