Summary: Easter sermon
Intro: Today is Easter, a day many of us have been looking forward to for a long time now. We’ve been having Easter egg hunts, coloring eggs, buying special outfits, getting flowers, and all kinds of other activities associated with Easter. But, there was another event we remembered this week: Good Friday. Now the excitement is always with Easter. There is a time of solemn remembrance on Good Friday, but the excitement comes on Easter morning, when we remember the resurrection from the dead.
Good Friday is a day we remember the rejection, the mocking, the scourging, and suffering Jesus went through. It is a day of sadness and sorrow. Yet, we know that to get to Easter morning, Jesus had to go through Good Friday.
How do you deal with all the problems you face? God’s plan for Jesus was to die!
We have been talking the last several weeks about times when the world sees a failure, but God sees a success. Today we want to talk about how death can be successful.
I. There is Success in the Death of a Sinless Sacrifice.
Our God is an amazing God. His plans are always perfect. From the beginning, when Adam and Eve sinned, God had a plan to deal with sin. He killed innocent animals and clothed them in the skins. Throughout the Old Testament, we find the record of the Jews and their history. God gave them instructions about making sacrifice. When someone sinned, they needed to take a spotless lamb, and take it to the priest to be killed to atone for their sin. Hebrews 10:11 tells us that the blood of bulls and goats could never take away sin. They covered the sin; looking forward to the day when a perfect sacrifice would be made.
Why did Jesus have to die? There was no other way to have our sins forgiven. All the bulls and goats sacrificed throughout the Old Testament were symbolic of the one perfect sacrifice to be made by Jesus.
There was no other way for our salvation to come about. We were sinners, with a nature inclined to doing wrong. That sin separated us from God. We could not save ourselves. No amount of good works can take away our sins. Only through accepting the sacrifice of Jesus could our sins be forgiven.
The wisdom of God often looks foolish to the world. It seems foolish to find victory in defeat. Yet, that is exactly what Christ did on the cross. The ladies sang a song, “The great divide.” In that it tells that there is a cross to bridge the great divide. If we think about our sins keeping us separated from God, as though there were two mountains with a great chasm between. There would be no way we could get across the chasm ourselves. Yet, if there would be a bridge, we could cross the bridge and get to the other side to be with God.
Now, the bridge has already been built. When Jesus died on the cross, the power of our sins’ separating us from God was broken. Now there was a way to restore our relationship to God and have our sins forgiven. Yet, only those who cross the bridge get to go to heaven and be with God. Many people talk about knowing Jesus paid for their sin; they believe Jesus died and rose again; yet there is still one thing lacking. They have never crossed the bridge - they have never said “Yes, Jesus, I will accept you as my Savior. Please forgive my sins and save me.”
Why did Jesus have to die? It was the only way to provide salvation. Have you received salvation? If today you had to answer the question, would you say you are still thinking about going on the bridge, or have you taken the bridge to cross to fellowship with God.
I want to stop here in the middle of the message and offer anyone here who has never prayed to accept Jesus Christ as Savior a chance to do that right now. Let’s pray.
## Lead through words of sinners’ prayer.
There is success in the death of a sinless sacrifice.
II. There is Success in the Preaching of the Death of a Sinless Sacrifice
God knew that while the world would look at Jesus as a failure, those who were truly wise would accept him as Lord. Yet, God also knew that this message of his love and salvation needed to be shared to the whole world. And he chose an amazing way to spread the good news. God could have given everyone visions; he could have caused great comets and signs in the heavens; he could have sent angels to tell everyone. Yet what plan did he choose to tell the world? You and me. You might think that’s a pretty poor plan - but it’s not. It’s the best way we could tell the good news.