THE LIVING WORD TRANSCRIPT
Program Air Date – 5-16-10
LESSON TITLE: “THIS IS THE DAY THAT THE LORD HAS MADE: THE DAY OF CHRIST’S DEATH”
In James 1:17 we read, “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.” Oh, the many wondrous things we have to be thankful for in this life as those who are richly blessed in Christ Jesus.
I’m also glad you chose to give this time to God, on this beautiful Lord’s day morning. What could we have to be more thankful for than this opportunity to come before our Father’s throne and to Worship Him? Won’t you do your part this day to see that all that is done is to His glory and according to His will!
Now let’s take a moment to speak with our God and show our thanksgiving in prayer!
It’s now time to begin our song of praise this morning. So wont you join in with the congregation at this time as we sing together the first hymn of the day, its name, “Blest Be the Tie That Binds!”
(SONG # 1)
We started out this morning with an encouraging verse which reminds us of the fact that our God blesses us with all good things. In fact, James said that “every good gift and every perfect gift,” is from God. No doubt this is why our God expects us to show our thankfulness and love toward Him, by doing those things which He commands.
I think this is exactly what Paul had in mind in 1 Thessalonians 5:17-18, where he said, “pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” Notice the things we are encouraged to do here if we want to accomplish the Will of God!
First we are to Pray. And not just now and then but as often as we can, “without ceasing.” As followers of God we are to ever have an open line of communication with our God as we speak to Him and thank Him in prayer.
The second thing we learn about our duty is a need to give thanks in everything! As we pray, God wants us to show our thankfulness for all He has done, all He is doing, and all He has promised to do for us. Do we give thanks for all things as we pray to our God?
Finally, notice that these things are not just suggestions or actions that might be good to consider. This verse says that this is God’s own Will! So when we pray always, and give thanks for all things in our prayers to God - we are accomplishing the very Will of God almighty. And we all know that when we accomplish the things of God, we thus are found pleasing in His sight!
So let me exhort us all to be more thankful toward God for all that we are and all that we have. Let’s all get into the habit of always showing our thankfulness to God through prayer, for everything that we have been blessed with in this life. It’s never too late to express our complete thankfulness to God.
Today we are excited to have a graduate from the Bible Institute of Missouri with us. Brother Andy Heavin is presently the minister for the Lee & Walnut church of Christ in Sapulpa, Oklahoma. We thank him for being with us and look forward to him leading our main thoughts from God’s Word.
As far as our study of the day, we are continuing with our series which is entitled, “This Is the Day That the Lord Has made.” Our specific lesson of the day deals with, “The Day of Christ’s Death!” So please stay with us this morning and after our next song together, brother Andy will be leading us in the main thoughts of the day.
But for now let’s join together in our second song of the morning. The name of this hymn, “Count Your Blessings.”
(SONG # 2)
By Andy Heavin
Good morning! We appreciate you tuning in this morning to this program. Certainly as we look today and consider the day of Christ’s death we think about Christ and all that He has done for us in this life.
In John chapter 15 and verse 13 Jesus said to His disciples, “Greater love has no one than this than to lay down his life for his friend.” Indeed His disciples and those who follow and obey Jesus are His friends. We know that God gave His only begotten Son that we might have the hope of everlasting life and we might have that opportunity and so as we think about Jesus and the greatest story ever told, today we want to focus perhaps on the saddest part of the story as we look into the death of Christ.
I hope that you will turn in your Bibles with me to the book of Matthew chapter 27 as we want to consider some of the things and the events that took place during this time in Jesus’ life. There in Matthew chapter 27 beginning in verse 36 it says, “Jesus came with them to a place called Gethsemane and said to His disciples, ‘Sit here while I go and pray over there,’ and He took with Him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee and He began to be sorrowful and deeply distressed. Then He said to them, ‘My soul is exceedingly sorrowful. Even to death, stay here and watch with Me.’” Again Jesus went a little further and prayed and perhaps those words that we’ve heard, those words that we know Jesus said there in verse 39, “Oh My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me. Nevertheless, not as I will, but as You will.” Jesus went on to pray this two more times in verse 42 and verse 44. It is amazing that Jesus here at this time in His life when He knew the events that were about to transpire in His life, that indeed He was going to have to give His life that He turned to the Heavenly Father in prayer.
Do we do the same in our own lives when we are faced with struggles? Here He knew He was about to die. He didn’t lose His faith. He didn’t turn away, but instead He turned to God.
As we read in Luke chapter 22 and verse 44, we see what an exceedingly sorrowful and agonizing time this was for Jesus as there in that text it says that “His sweat became like great drops of blood.” Can you imagine being at such a point in your life? You’re there on your knees praying to God and you’re sweating like so.
Jesus had an amazing prayer life with His Father in Heaven. Certainly here as He was facing these times, He was praying for strength to make it through this difficult time in His life that He might indeed be able to complete the Father’s Will. He was all about making sure God’s Will would be done for Him in this life. And certainly we ought to be thankful that He did go through and that He did obey and complete the Father’s Will.
But as we go on, we see as He was there in the garden, after He had prayed these things the third time in verse 47 it says, “And while He was still speaking, behold Judas, one of the twelve with the great multitude with swords and clubs came from the chief priest and elders of the people.” We know that Judas, one of His own, was the one that betrayed Jesus Christ. His betrayer, in verse 48, had given them a sign saying, “Whomever I kiss, He is the One. Seize Him.” What did Judas do? He went over and he kissed his Savior. He kissed Jesus betraying Him into the hands of those who had come to arrest Jesus there at this time.
As we go on to see, Peter took out a sword and he struck one of the servants of the High Priest cutting off his ear. Jesus said, “Put that sword in its place,” in verse 42, He says, “For all who take the sword will perish by the sword. Or do you not think that I can now pray to My Father and He will provide with Me more than twelve legions of angels? How then could the scriptures be fulfilled that it must happen thus?” And so there it was that Jesus was arrested and taken by His betrayers and put on trial. There in verse 56, we see that at that time all the disciples forsook Him and fled. They left Jesus at this time, this most difficult and agonizing time in His life, Jesus was all alone. But there in verse 57, it says, “And those who laid hold of Jesus led Him away to Caiaphas, the High Priest, where the scribes and the elders were assembled. But Peter followed them at a distance to the High Priest courtyard and he went in and sat with the servants to see the end.” I find it interesting that when Jesus was put on trial that Peter was right there sitting in the midst of them. Then we see in verse 59 that the Chief Priest, the elders, the counsel, they were seeking false testimony. They could find no fault with Jesus, but they were making up stories, blaspheming against the Savior, looking for these false witnesses that they might destroy Jesus, that they might crucify Him upon the cross. Verse 64, Jesus is answering them and He says, “It is as you said, nevertheless I say to you, Hereafter you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the power and coming on the clouds of Heaven.” Then the High Priest tore his clothes saying, “He has spoken blasphemy. What further need do you have witnessed? Look now you have heard this blasphemy?”
What do you think they answered and said? They said, “He is deserving of death.” All because He said that indeed He was the Son of Man and that they were going to see these things come to pass. Indeed He was the Son of God. He was the Savior. He was the Messiah that they were looking for, that they had hoped for who was going to provide them with life and things to come. As He is there on trial, as they said He was deserving of death in verse 67, it says, “They spat in His face and beat Him. Others struck Him with the palms of their hands saying, ‘Prophesy to us, Christ.’” Who is the one who struck you? Mocking Him, beating Him, Spitting upon His face.
Imagine yourself in this same situation. How would you react if people were telling lies about you spitting in your face and beating you? How would you respond? After these things, we read and know that Jesus was delivered into the hands of Pilate beginning there in chapter 27. It is there in chapter 27 that as He is before the Roman government and Pilate the Jews must now convince him that Jesus is deserving of death. It is interesting in Luke chapter 23 and verse 4 that Pilate says, “I find no fault with this man. Jesus is an innocent man. Why do you seek to put Him to death?” But instead of releasing Jesus, Pilate gives in to the Jews demands. Instead of releasing Jesus, he gives them the choice, “Who do you want me to release? Do you want me to release Barabbas, this murderer, this robber, or do you want me to release Jesus, this innocent man?”
Think again about some of the things that Jesus did during this whole time. He knew that Judas would betray Him, but He went to the garden, a place where Judas knew Jesus would have been and Jesus didn’t hide. He was willing to face His accusers. In His trial, Jesus did not try to incriminate His accusers. He didn’t get ugly. He didn’t stand up and cause troubles. He took it. He followed His own teachings, we might say, and turned the other cheek. He practiced what He preached at this most difficult time in His life.
Would we be willing to do the same ourselves today if we were faced with the same troubles?
The apostle Paul was one who endured many things in his life. We read about that in 2 Corinthians chapter 11. Can you imagine even suffering just a bit of what Paul did and standing strong in the faith and doing what is right? We should count it a joy when we fall into various trials especially when we consider what it is that Jesus has done for us in giving Himself for us.
There in Matthew chapter 27, again as we see these things as Jesus is ready to be released to be crucified, we see there in John chapter 19 as he has been sentenced to death that Pilate in John chapter 19 and verse 1 took Jesus and scourged Him. I don’t know if you are familiar with the practice of scourging. But this scourging is taking a whip that has bits of metal, bits of bone and glass tied in the end of it, and as they took that they beat Jesus in the back. Can you feel? Can you imagine the flesh tearing as those bones dig into the flesh and rips the skin? Not only that, in verse 2 it says, “The soldiers twisted a crown of thorns and put it on His head, and they put on Him a purple robe mocking Him as a king.” They said in verse 3, “Hail king of Jews and they struck Him with the palms of their hands.” Again, not only had He already endured many of these things, but they continued to mock, continued to ridicule Him and humiliate Him.
But as we see these things, after even enduring these things, Jesus is made to carry His own cross to His death. There in chapter 27 of the book of Matthew, it says, “Now,” in verse 32, “they came out. They found a man of Cyrene, Simon by name. Him they compelled to bear His cross because Jesus fell beneath the load.” He was unable to bear it? Would you be willing to carry the cross of Jesus there to Calvary and all those things? There He was now at Calvary. As they lay that cross down, as they lay Jesus there and stretch Him out on the cross and they began to nail Him to that cross, do you hear the hammer striking those nails? Do you hear the cries of Jesus as they pierced His flesh? Now they pick up that cross. They drop it in this hole that they have dug in the ground, and Jesus is there hanging upon the cross. There He is near the final hours of His life, stretched out ready to die. Do you have the strength to say what Jesus says? There is His accusers and all those who are guilty of putting Him upon the cross, and He says in Luke chapter 23 and verse 34, “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.” These are the people who are responsible for putting Him there upon the cross.
But Jesus endured those things for us. He gave His life that we might have hope, that we might have the opportunity to spend eternity with Him in Heaven one day. We can have that hope. We have so much to be thankful for because of the sinless life of Jesus. It is in His death and shed blood that we have much hope. In fact, it is the blood that Jesus shed there upon the cross that offers us forgiveness of sins. It is by His blood that we can be cleansed or washed of our sins.
In Hebrews chapter 9 and verse 22 as well as chapter 10 and verse 18 it says, “Without the shed blood of Jesus there would be no remission of sins.” Jesus gives us that opportunity because of what He did that we can be forgiven and have hope with Him one day.
In 1 John chapter 1 and verse 7 the child of God, the one who has obeyed His Will, the one who has repented of His sins, confessed Christ and has been baptized for He comes into contact with the blood of Christ that he raises his sins away as he is raised out of the grave to walk in newness of life as we read about in Romans chapter 6 beginning in verse 3 through about verse 11. We see those things taking place. But as a child of God, those who have obeyed His Will, those who remain faithful, they know as it reads in 1 John 1 and verse 7 that it is the blood of Jesus Christ that continues to cleanse us of our sins if we will but repent of them and confess them before Him.
Aren’t we thankful for the love of Jesus? Aren’t we thankful for the love of God who sent His Son, who gives us this hope? I hope that you remember, I hope that you think about the death of Christ in your life and what He has done for you, the hope that you can find in Him and being grateful and thankful for His life. Will you consider what Jesus has done for you?
(SONG # 3 - “To Christ Be Loyal And Be True!”)
Thank you again for choosing to be with us today, in giving this time to God. I hope our time together has been an encouragement and blessing to all of us. We invite you back every Lord’s Day morning at 7:30, as we commit ourselves to this offering for God!
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How blessed we are to have a Savior who was willing to suffer on Calvary. What a price He was willing to pay for you and me! Have you responded to His great love for you? Have you obeyed all of His commandments?