LESSONS FROM THE CROSS – PART 2
This is the third different gospel we have read that looks at what was being said and done while Jesus hung on the cross. Each one we have read has some similar parts to what was happening. But each of the three has some things Jesus said or did that were slightly different from the others. There are, of course, four gospels. Matthew and Mark are the most in common. They tell of the events almost identical to one another. Why are there differences between the accounts of Mark, Luke and John? We can only guess. It is possible they were there at different times and as a result saw and heard different things as they were happening. We simply do not really know. I am convinced God made sure everything was accurately recorded about everything that was said and done while Jesus was on the cross. Let us look at what Mark saw and recorded. The first few verses we read tells of Jesus’ slow journey to where he was to be crucified. On the way, we see how he was ridiculed, beaten and spit on. They even mockingly dressed him up as a king with a purple robe before they stripped him and crucified him. Once hung on the cross to die many of the things said were similar between the four gospels. But again, there are slightly different things told between Mark, Luke and John. As we saw last week, Luke went into detail about the exchange between Jesus and the two criminals crucified with him. If you remember, back to Easter Sunday, John told of the special moment Jesus shared with Mary, his mother, and how he put John in charge of her welfare from that point on. Here we read of the moments just before Jesus died. Jesus said to God the father. “My God, why hast thou forsaken me?” Do you believe for a moment Jesus did not understand why this had to happen? I am convinced it was at this precise moment the sin of every single person from Adam and Eve, to those living at the moment of the crucifixion, to this present time and beyond was place on Jesus. At that very moment in time, it seemed Jesus was literally alone paying for everyone’s sin and it was overwhelming. In Proverbs 6:16-19, we read there are six things the Lord hates, seven that are detestable to him—haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies and a man who stirs up dissension among brothers. For a brief moment in time, God laid every one of those sins everyone had committed, and all the sins everyone would commit in the future on Jesus as he hung on the cross. Jesus being perfect and one who could not tolerate sin in his life saw all the sin of all time and it was seemingly more than he could stand. That is what Jesus, God in the flesh, chose to do for us. If we were to read the 37th verse in Mark, the 15th chapter it says Jesus with a loud cry breathed his last and died. I would like us to go to John’s account one more time in John 19:30. We read, “When he had received the drink, Jesus said, it is finished. With that he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.” I believe after Jesus had the sin of the world placed on him by God the father, the loud cry talked of in Mark is actually Jesus saying IT IS FINISHED as recorded in John. Jesus did not say “it is finished” in a defeated way but triumphantly declaring to all the world to see. Satan and sin has been defeated. We no longer have to live in fear. God has paid the ultimate price for our sins once and for all. Our salvation is secure. All we must do is acknowledge Jesus as Lord and Savior and thank God for carrying our sins to the cross. Jesus incredibly was doing all of this out of love while dying on the cross, suffering a death he did not deserve, but chose to do for us. The victory has been won. Death has been defeated. What is the lesson God is sharing with us? There is nothing God will not do for us. Also, that Jesus gave everything he could for us, by being willing to die on the cross to take away our sins. Nothing, including this Coronavirus, can have victory over us without first passing through our God’s hands. Those of us who have received Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior have the victory in this life and the life to come. For those who have not yet allowed Jesus to be Lord of your life, now is the time. God died on the cross for you. God is reaching out to all of us who are weak and heavy laden and inviting us to come and give us rest.
Numbers 6:24-27—“May the Lod bless you and keep you, the Lord make his face to shine on you and be gracious to you, the Lord turn his face to you and give you peace.”
Announcements May 3, 2020
May 10: worship with us on facebook live at 10:00 when Larry gives the message. You can also watch this any time after the session is over. We will worship this way during all of May, or as long as the stay-at-home order is in effect.
Remember to get an Upper Room: May/June issues are available in the copy room at church. Call Nancy Born-Martin if you are unable to get one, and she will be sure you get a copy. Large print and regular are available. You may also get a PDF copy of the May/June issue of UPPER ROOM on line at www.upperroom.org/covid-19
Offerings: Thanks to everyone for keeping up with your offerings! Please continue to either mail your offerings to the church at PO Box 45 or, if you have a key to the church, put it in the donation box at the back of the sanctuary in a properly marked envelope.
Please let Stacie Warren or Larry Traxler know of any supplies you need and are unable to get for yourself. Someone in the church will get them for you.
Let Carol Kussart or Kathy Gentry know if you need a mask.
June 7: tentative date for the Strawberry Festival, in some form, we hope
Cancelled: May board meeting and May council meeting
We will try to have a board meeting on Wednesday, June 10, if possible.
First Sunday of the month: Food Banks
Food needs: boxes of cereal, boxes of prepared foods, such as soups, potatoes, rice, mac & cheese, peanut butter, jelly
This month, in lieu of a food donation, please consider sending The Lord’s Storehouse a monetary donation. The address is PO Box 229, La Place, IL 61936
Donation Box May and June: Vacation Bible School
--Don’t forget to check mailboxes when you are able.
Keep up on denominational happenings at www.brethren.org
Larry Traxler’s phone number: 217-454-2362
Keep in Your Prayers
Adiline Young; Barb Baker; Kim Lehmann; Dylan Junior; Doug Fansler; Liam Martina; Ali Bryant; Jeff Sawyer; Liza Yore; Candy Dobson; Anna Rose Larrick; Mike Gentry; Gary Jesse; Norm & Marge Starr; Shawn Cain; Robert Cripe; Mayo Hanaver; Zola Copeland and family; Jennifer Like; Patty Cripe; Lauren Gross; Stacie Warren; Nancy Gorrell; many unspoken requests; Coronavirus crisis; healthcare workers and first responders; Michelle Wright and family with the death of her father Jim McCleery; Brittany Wright and family with the death of her stepfather Rick Beldock
Military and Other Services and their families
Brethren Volunteer Service workers; Disaster project workers
Praise: Tim Laird’s last scan showed no cancer.
Clyde and Nancy Fansler thank the congregation for prayers for Sam Nall, Mindy Fansler Nall’s father-in-law. He was diagnosed with pneumonia and is on the road to recovery.
Prayers and cards of encouragement are requested for our Shut-ins:
Zola Copeland – 214 E. Fitch St. Forsyth, IL 62535-9668
Anna Rose Larrick – C/O Evergreen Place #110
4825 E. Evergreen Ct. Decatur IL 62521
Shawn Cain – 208 West Wait St. Cerro Gordo IL 61818
Robert Cripe – 21 Park Street Danville IL 61832