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                        "THE GOSPEL OF MATTHEW"

                  The Crucifixion Of Jesus (27:32-50)

INTRODUCTION

1. Without question, the crucifixion of Jesus was a terrible event...
   a. It was an excruciating and painful way to die, which Jesus was
      willing to accept without pain-killing drugs - Mt 27:32-35
   b. It was a shameful way to die, mocked by those who watched,
      crucified with common thieves - Mt 27:36-44
   c. Along with the physical suffering, there was the spiritual agony
      - Mt 27:45-50

2. While there may be a place for contemplating upon the actual
   physical agony Jesus endured...
   a. Jesus did not want people to weep for Him, but for themselves
      - cf. Lk 23:26-31
   b. Even on the cross, His concern for others was evident - Lk 23:34
   -- So the purpose of the crucifixion was not just to engender pity
      for Jesus

[The significance and lessons to be learned from the crucifixion go far
beyond feeling sorry for what Jesus suffered.  For example, we should
never forget that "The Crucifixion Of Jesus" is...]

I. THE CONDEMNATION OF SIN

   A. JESUS DIED BECAUSE OF SIN...
      1. As foretold, He died for our sins - 1Co 15:3; Isa 53:5-6
      2. He gave Himself for our sins - Ga 1:4
      3. He bore our sins on the cross - 1Pe 2:24
      -- May the thought of the crucifixion remind us of our own
         sinfulness and the need for redemption - 1Jn 1:8-10

   B. JESUS KILLED SIN...
      1. He condemned sin in the flesh through His death - Ro 8:3
      2. Now making it possible for sinners to destroy their own body
         of sin, when united with Him by baptism into His death - Ro 6:
         3-6
      -- May the thought of the crucifixion remind us of our duty to
         crucify the sinful passions of the flesh - Ga 5:24; Col 3:5-11

[To motivate us in our efforts to let Jesus' death help us deal with
the problem of sin, we should also remember that "The Crucifixion Of
Jesus" is...]

II. THE REVELATION OF LOVE

   A. JESUS DIED BECAUSE OF LOVE...
      1. The love of the Father for a lost world - Jn 3:16; Ro 5:8
      2. The love of the Son - Ep 5:2
      -- May our contemplation of the crucifixion never neglect the
         love that was behind the fact - 1Jn 4:9-10

   B. JESUS THEREBY DEMONSTRATED WHAT TRUE LOVE IS...
      1. We now understand the meaning of true love - 1Jn 3:16; Jn 15:13
      2. His love serves as the pattern for our love - Jn 13:34-35;
         15:12
      -- May our contemplation of the crucifixion remind us of the high
         standard of love we are called to show toward one another 
         - 1Jn 4:11

[As we strive to overcome sin and love one another, assisted and
motivated by the death of Jesus on the cross, we should also be mindful
that "The Crucifixion Of Jesus" is...]

III. THE REDEMPTION OF THE WORLD

   A. JESUS DIED FOR ALL...
      1. God desires all men to be saved, not desiring any to perish
         - 1Ti 2:3-6; 2Pe 3:9
      2. Therefore He offered Jesus as a propitiation for all - 1Jn 2:
         1-2
      -- May our meditation upon the crucifixion include thinking about
         the need of others

   B. JESUS IS THE WORLD'S ONLY HOPE...
      1. He is the only way to the Father - Jn 14:6
      2. Only in His name is salvation to be found - Ac 4:12
      3. Deny the Son, and one does not have the Father - 1Jn 2:23
      4. Abide in His doctrine, and one has both the Father and the Son
         - 2Jn 9
      -- May our meditation upon the crucifixion move us to do what we
         can to proclaim the message of redemption to those lost in sin
         - cf. 2Co 5:18-6:1

[And so the death of Jesus on the cross should prompt us to look both
inward and outward, to address both our spiritual needs and those of
others. To what extent effort may be required in these areas, we should
also view "The Crucifixion Of Jesus" as...]

IV. THE INSPIRATION OF SACRIFICE

   A. JESUS PROVIDED THE EXAMPLE...
      1. His death demonstrated the mind of humility - Php 2:3-8
      2. His suffering demonstrated the example of suffering patiently
         - 1Pe 2:20-24
      -- May our reflection upon the crucifixion move us to consider
         what His sacrifice should inspire us to do

   B. JESUS' SACRIFICE IS DESIGNED TO INSPIRE US...
      1. To walk in love - Ep 5:2
      2. To walk in humility - Php 2:3-5
      3. To suffer patiently when mistreated for doing good - 1Pe 2:
         20-24
      4. To give of ourselves to others - 2Co 8:9; 1Jn 3:16-18

CONCLUSION

1. Certainly more could be said about "The Crucifixion Of Jesus"

2. But perhaps these few thoughts will increase our appreciation of
   this significant event...
   a. His death is the condemnation of sin
   b. His death is the revelation of love
   c. His death is the redemption of the world
   d. His death is the inspiration of sacrifice

3. Have you taken advantage of what "The Crucifixion Of Jesus" means
   for you...?
   a. Have you been crucified with Christ?
   b. Are you putting to death the deeds of the flesh?
   c. Are you growing in love?
   d. Are you concerned and doing something about the redemption of the
      world?
   e. Are you inspired in your service to your brethren and the lost by
      the example of Jesus' sacrifice?

In the words of the apostle Paul:  "We then, as workers together with
Him also plead with you not to receive the grace of God in vain." (2 Co
6:1)
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