THE DEATH OF JESUS CHRIST
Text: Matthew 27:45-54
` Previously in this series, we learned Good Friday is a call to follow Jesus wholeheartedly, depend on God’s grace and cultivate self-control in life. This sermon is the last instalment the series. Today we are going to draw three more life applications from the observations recorded in the Bible at time of the passion and death of our saviour.
1. Divine Judgement
Now from noon until three, darkness came over all the land. At about three o’clock Jesus shouted with a loud voice, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”When some of the bystanders heard it, they said, “This man is calling for Elijah. “Immediately one of them ran and got a sponge, filled it with sour wine, put it on a stick, and gave it to him to drink. But the rest said, “Leave him alone! Let’s see if Elijah will come to save him.” (Matthew 27:27-54)
A. A supernatural darkness lasted all over the land. Skeptics say this was just a solar eclipse but a solar eclipse cannot occur during a full moon.
B. The darkness came in broad daylight. It was actually a sign of judgement.
C. Jesus shouted with a loud voice, “eli, eli, lema sabachthani” because the judgement was on him. Not the world.
What is divine judgement?
· Wrath of God. Jesus was exposed to it when he became the sin offering for us on the cross.
· Separation from God. God forsook Jesus. Hence the shout “eli, eli, lema sabachthani”
· Condemnation to eternal punishment in the terrible lake of fire intended for Satan and his company.
The one who believes in him is not condemned. The one who believes in him is not condemned. The one who does not believe has been condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the one and only Son of God. (John 3:18) Whoever refuses to believe in the sacrifice of Jesus stands condemned in the eyes of God.
2. The Accomplishment
And Jesus cried again with a loud voice, and yielded up his spirit. And behold, the veil of the temple was rent in two from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake; and the rocks were rent; and the tombs were opened; and many bodies of the saints that had fallen asleep were raised; and coming forth out of the tombs after his resurrection they entered into the holy city and appeared unto many. (Matthew 27:50-53)
A. According to John 19:30 “It’s finished were Jesus’ exact words”. These words were confirmed by three miraculous signs.
B. The veil of the temple which separated the presence of God from the presence of man was rent in two from the top to bottom.
C. The earth quake and the rocks were rent, the tombs were open and many saints who had died before Christ were brought back to life.
Why did Jesus say it’s finished?
· He crossed the finishing line. He accomplished the Mission. His sufferings were over.
· He finally bridged the gap between man and God. The earth and the temple veil were witnesses of this.
· His death meant the fulfillment of all Old Testament prophecies, symbols, and foreshadowing’s of the coming Messiah.
By his will we have been made holy through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. (Hebrews 10:10)
We can do away with religion and rituals because Jesus finished it on the cross of Calvary.
3. The Confession
Now the centurion, and they that were with him watching Jesus, when they saw the earthquake, and the things that were done, feared exceedingly, saying, truly this was the Son of God. (Matthew 27:54)
A. These were the Roman Soldiers and their Centurion who were guarding Jesus.
B. The Centurion was the same man who presided over Jesus’ execution, the man who ordered the nails to be driven into His hands and feet.
C. All of them were extremely terrified and said, “Truly this one was God’s Son!”
Why did they confess?
· Once again this was fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecy. Isaiah 45:23-24) says every knee shall bow before God.
· They saw the miraculous happenings. Probably heard what happened in the temple as well as the graveyard.
· They had crucified many outlaws before. But Jesus’ behavior was different even when he was on the cross.
because if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. (Romans 10:10)
Good Friday is the miracle that the son of God died to set us free. That freedom is only a confession away.
Good Friday is not just another Christian holiday. Rather it’s a great miracle because,
· We stand justified before God because Christ took my punishment upon himself.
· We can do away with religion and rituals because Jesus finished it on the cross of Calvary.
· We only need to confess with our mouths and believe in our hearts that Jesus is Lord to be saved.
Good Friday is a reminder Jesus died on a cross, so that we shall have everlasting life. He had nothing to gain but you. What will you do about it?