THE CROSS OF CHRIST DOWNLOAD THIS POWERPOINT AT HTTP://WWW.JLWILLIAMS.ORG/MEDIA/POWERPOINTS/ BIBLICAL PRINCIPLES FOR LIVING SERIES
OUTLINE: • THE PLAN OF THE CROSS • THE PREPARATIONS OF THE CROSS • THE PERVERSIONS OF THE CROSS • THE PROPHECIES OF THE CROSS • THE PERSON OF THE CROSS
5. THE PAIN OF THE CROSS 6. THE PERMANENCE OF THE CROSS 7. THE PRINCIPLES OF THE CROSS 8. THE PATTERN OF THE CROSS 9. THE PREACHING OF THE CROSS
INTRODUCTION: • GOD HAS NOTHING FOR YOU APART FROM THE CROSS; • BUT HE HAS EVERYTHING FOR YOU THROUGH THE CROSS; • EVERY BLESSING AND BENEFIT FROM GOD COMES TO US THROUGH THE CROSS OF CHRIST.
“PRAISE BE TO THE GOD AND FATHER OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST WHO HAS BLESSED US IN THE HEAVENLY REALMS WITH EVERY SPIRITUAL BLESSING IN CHRIST…IN HIM WE HAVE REDEMPTION THROUGH HIS BLOOD, THE FORGIVENESS OF SINS, IN ACCOR-DANCE WITH THE RICHES OF GOD’S GRACE THAT HE LAVISHED ON US… WHICH HE PURPOSED IN CHRIST… TO BRING ALL THINGS IN HEAVEN AND ON EARTH TO-GETHER UNDER ONE HEAD, EVEN CHRIST.” (EPH. 1:3-10)
1. THE PLAN OF THE CROSS • The crucifixion of Christ was not an isolated event that took place in a historical vacuum. • It was the saving event of human history that God had prepared from the eons of past eternity. • Before God spoke the world into existence – He planned the cross!
That’s why the Apostle John called Jesus: “…the Lamb that was slain from the creation of the world” (Revelation 13:8; c.f. 17:18). • “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. For He chose us in Him before the creation of the worldto be holy and blameless in His sight. In love He predestined us to be adopted as His sons through Christ, in accordance with His pleasure and will – to the praise of His glorious grace, which He has freely given us in the One He loves. In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that He lavishes on us…” (Eph. 1:3-8)
“God has saved us and called us…not because of anything we have done, but because of His own purposes and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus…” (II Tim. 1:10).
“Paul, a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ for the faith of God’s elect…a faith and knowledge resting on the hope of eternal life, which God, who does not lie, promised before the beginning of time, and at His appointed season He brought His word to light through the preaching entrusted to me by the command of God our Savior” (Titus 1:1-3).
“From the beginningGod chose you to be saved through the sanctifying work of the Spirit and through belief in the truth. He called you to this through our Gospel that you might share in the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ” (II Thess. 2:13-14).
JESUS SAID: • (Separation & Reward of Sheep & Goats): • “…take your inheritance, the Kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world”(Matt. 25:34). • Jesus Christ: “…the Lamb that was slain from the creation of the world”(Rev. 13:8).
2. THE PREPARATION OF THE CROSS: Therefore, every animal sacrifice in the Old Testament pointed toward the sacrifice of Christ on the cross. This is especially significant because of the defining role that the shedding of bloodplayed in every animal sacrifice.
QUALIFICATIONS FOR SACRIFICES • Every sacrifice was to be perfect and precious – so they were costly. • Each one was precisely prepared in every detail according to God’s instructions. • In each animal sacrifice, there was a loss of life.
Central to every sacrifice was an altar upon which an innocent animal was slain. • Most importantly, the shedding of blood was the very heart of every sacrifice. • All of these annual sacrifices from the Old Covenant were foreshadows of the perfect and final sacrifice of Christ that was the basis for the New Covenant.
HEBREWS SAYS: • (As our High Priest who died once): “…He entered heaven itself…to appear for us in God’s presence. Nor did He enter heaven to offer Himself again and again, the way the high priests enters the Most Holy Place every year with blood that is not his own. Then Christ would have had to suffer many times since the creation of the world. But now He has appeared once for all…to do away with sin by the sacrifice of Himself…so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many people…”(Heb. 9:22-28).
3. THE PERVERSION OF THE CROSS • Religion = Man-made salvation • After Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden, they felt naked and ashamed before each other and before God. • So they did what many people do, they “got religion!” But “no sacrifice”
“…they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves” (Gen. 3:7). • In doing so, they performed the very first religious act in history. “Cheap Grace!” • This was man’s first attempt to deal with his own sin through the work of his hands. • That’s why the central practice in every religion is some form of works righteousness.
Religion is an attempt in some way to “cover up” your own sin by the work of your own hands. • The Biblical word for “covering” is the word atonement. • It is used some 150 times in the Old Testament. • It means “to cover or conceal.”
Atonement is always associated with two things: • Forgivenessof sins; • Reconciliationwith God.
So atonement means: “A covering that conceals a person’s sin and makes it possible for him to approach God.” • So after Adam and Eve sinned, they “got religion” and tried to“…sew fig leaves together to cover themselves.” • Mankind has been “sewing” and “covering” themselves ever since through religion – even in the church!
But God told them that the gravity of their sin and disobedience was too great to be cheaply covered by“fig leaves.” • God had previously warned the man and woman that if they disobeyed Him “…they would surely die.” • Regardless of His love for them, God could not and would not lay aside His holiness and justice.
A punishment unto death would have to take place, or God would compromise His holiness in the face of their rebellion and sin. • Either they would be put to death – or something else living would be put to death in their place. A substitute would have to be found! • So, we read these words: “The Lord God made garments of skinfor Adam and his wife and clothed them”(Genesis 3:21).
This was the first death and act of grace in human history! • This was the first case of “substitutionary atonement” where something innocent was put to death in place of someone guilty. • And this atonement could not take place without the “shedding of blood.”
ABLE’S SACRIFICE • The second sacrifice in the Bible: “Now Abelkept flocks, and Cainworked the soil. In the course of time Cain brought some of the fruits of the soil as an offering to the Lord. But Abel brought fat portions from some of the firstborn of his flock.The Lord looked with favor on Abel and his offering, but on Cain and his offering He did not look with favor”(Genesis 4:2-5). Principle: “Faith” brings “favor.”
“By faith Abel offered God a better sacrifice than Cain did. By faith he was commended as a righteous manwhen God spoke well of his offerings. And by faith he still speaks even though he is dead” (Hebrews 11:4). • Note: Abel is first man in “Faith Hall of Fame.” • So while Cain came to God on the basis of his works, Abel came on the basis of faith – • “And without faith it is impossible to please God…” (Hebrews 11:6).
ABRAHAM’S SACRIFICE • “Take your son, your only son, Isaac (“son of promise”), whom you love and go to the region of Moriah.Sacrifice him there as a burnt offeringon one of the mountains I will tell you about” (Genesis 22:2). • Abraham looked up and there in a thicket he saw a ram caught by its horns. He went over and took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering instead of his son. So Abraham called that place, ‘The Lord will Provide’ (“Jehovah-Jireh”) (Genesis 22:1-14).
“By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had received the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son, even though God had said to him, ‘It is through Isaac that your offspring will be called.’ Abraham reasoned that God could raise the dead, and figuratively speaking, he did receive Isaac back from death” (Heb. 11:17-19; c.f. Rom. 4:1-25).
THE PASSOVER SACRIFICE “The Lord said to Moses and Aaron in Egypt. ‘This month is to be for you the first month, the first month of your year. Tell the whole community of Israel that on the tenth day of this month each man is to take a lamb for his family, one for each household…The animals you chose must be year-old males without defect…Take care of them until the fourteenth day of the month, when all the people of the community of Israel must slaughter them at twilight. Then they are to take some of the blood and put it on the sides and tops of the doorframes of the houses where they eat the lambs…
…That same night they are to eat the meat roasted over the fire, along with bitter herbs, and bread without yeast…This is how you are to eat it: with your cloak tucked into your belt, your sandals on your feet and your staff in your hand. Eat it in haste; it is the Lord’s Passover. On that same night I will pass through Egypt and strike down every firstborn – both men and animals – and I will bring judgment on all the gods of Egypt. I am the Lord. The blood will be a sign for you on the houses where you are; and when I see the blood, I will pass over you. No destructive plague will touch you when I strike Egypt.” (Ex. 12:1-13)
4. THE PROPHECIES OF THE CROSS: • Fulfilled prophecies are some of the greatest proofs for the divine inspiration of the Bible. • Fulfilled Prophecy is also one of the greatest proofs that Jesus was just who He claimed to be – God’s Messiah, the Savior of the world. • No other religion in the world has such a wealth of fulfilled prophecy as does Christianity
No other world religious leader’s coming was foretold hundreds of years in advance in such minute detail as was Christ’s! • The Old Testament was written over an approximate 1,500 years and contains several hundred prophecies and references to the coming of Christ the Messiah. • These prophecies can be divided into two types: prophecies of a Kingly Messiah and prophecies of a Suffering Messiah. Jesus Christ fulfilled both.
Around 30 prophecies specifically related to the circumstances surrounding Christ’s crucifixion on the cross. • Many of the prophecies that were fulfilled by Christ were completely outside of His control or human manipulation – especially events related to His birth and death.
Specific events that Jesus could not have in any way manipulated: • The place of His birth (Micah 5:2) • The time of His birth (Daniel 9:25) • The manner of His birth (Isaiah 7:14) • The details of His betrayal (Psalm 41:9) • The way He would be put to death (Psalm 22:1) • The circumstances of His burial (Isaiah 53:9)
PROPHECIES: (O.T. REFERENCE & N.T. FULFILLMENT) • He would triumphantly enter Jerusalem (Zech. 9:9; LK. 19:28-44); • He would be a “stumbling stone” to Jews • (Ps. 118:22; Rom. 9:32-33); • He would be rejected by His own people • (Ps. 69:8; Matt. 21:42-43); • He would be hated without cause • (Isa. 49:7; Jn.; 15:25);
PROPHECIES • He would be betrayed by a close friend (Ps. 41:9; Jn. 13:21); • He would be sold for 30 pieces of silver • (Zech. 11:12; Matt. 26:15); • The money would be thrown into the temple (Zech. 11:13; Matt. 27:5); • Money used to buy the Potter’s Field • (Zech. 11:13; Matt. 27:7);
PROPHECIES: • He would be forsaken by His disciples • (Zech. 13:7; Matt. 26:31-32); • He would be accused by false witnesses • (Ps. 35:11; Matt. 26:59-61) • • He would be silent before His accusers • (Isa. 53:7; Matt. 27:12-19) • • He would be wounded and bruised • (Isa. 53:5; Matt. 27:26) • • He would be smitten and spit upon • (Isa 50:6; Matt. 26:67) • • He would be mocked • (Ps. 22:7-8; Matt. 27:31)
PROPHECIES • He would fall beneath the cross • (Ps. 109:24-25; Lk. 23:26) • • His hands and feet would be pierced • (Ps. 22:16; Lk. 23:33) • • He would be crucified between thieves • (Isa. 53:12; Mk. 15:27-28) • • He would pray for His persecutors • (Isa. 53:12; Lk. 23:34)
PROPHECIES • His friends would stand afar off • (Ps. 38:11; LK. 23:49) • • He would be stared at on the cross • (Ps. 22:17; Lk. 23:35) • • His garments would be gambled for • (Ps. 22:18; Jn. 19:23-24) • • He would suffer thirst on the cross • (Ps. 22:15; Jn. 19:28) • • Gall and vinegar would be offered Him • (Ps. 69:21; Matt. 27:34) • • He would cry out a forsaken cry • (Ps. 22:1; Matt. 27:46)
PROPHECIES • He would commit Himself to God • (Ps. 31:5; LK. 23:46) • • None of His bones would be broken • (Ps. 34:20; Jn. 19:34) • • His side would be pierced • (Zech. 12:10; Jn. 19:34) • • Darkness would cover the land • (Amos 8:9; Matt. 27:49) • • He would be buried in a rich man’s tomb • (Isa. 53:9; Matt. 27:57-60) • • He would be resurrected from the dead • (Ps. 16:10; Matt 28:6)
PROPHECIES: (Peter’s Sermon to Jews): “You killed the author of life, but God raised Him from the dead. We are witnesses of this…Now, brothers, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did your leaders. But this is how God fulfilled what He had foretold through all the prophets, saying that His Christ would suffer…Indeed, all the prophets from Samuel on, as many as have spoken, have foretold these days. And you are heirs of the prophets and of the covenant God made with your fathers” (Acts 3:17-25).
3 SPECIFIC PROPHECIES ABOUT THE DEATH OF CHRIST: PROPHECY ONE: “The Lord God said to the serpent: ‘Because you have done this, ‘Cursed are you above all the livestock and all the wild animals! You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life. And I will put enmity between you and the woman and between your offspring and hers; He will crush your head and you will strike His heel” (Genesis 3:14-15).
PROPHECY TWO: “Then the Lord sent venomous snakes among them; they bit the people and many Israelites died. The people came to Moses and said, ‘We sinned when we spoke against the Lord and against you. Pray that the Lord will take the snakes away from us.’ So Moses prayed for the people. The Lord said to Moses, ‘Make a snake and put it up on a pole, anyone who is bitten can look at it and live.’ So Moses made a bronze snake and put it up on a pole. Then when anyone was bitten by a snake and looked (faith!) at the bronze snake, he lived” (Num. 21:4-9).
Jesus to Nichodemus: “Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert…so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that every-one who believes in Him may have eternal life.” “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” “For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him”(John 3:14-17).
PROPHECY THREE: “Christ redeemed us (literally means: ‘to buy out of slavery’) from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: ‘Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree’ (Note: OT background of this in Deut. 21:22-23). He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus… (Gal. 3:13)
CONCLUSIONS “Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation. For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.” (I Peter 1:19-21).
5. THE PERSON OF THE CROSS: “He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering…Surely He took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered Him stricken by God, smitten by Him, and afflicted. But He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities, the punishment that brought us peace was upon Him and by His wounds we are healed…the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all…He was like a lamb to the slaughter…He will bear their iniquities…He poured out His life unto death, and was numbered with the transgressors. For He bore the sin of many and made intercession for the transgressors.” (Isaiah 53:3-12)
“…carrying His own cross, He went out to the place called the skull. Here they crucified Him, and with two others, one on each side and Jesus in the middle” (Jn. 19:17-18). • (Peter’s sermon; Day of Pentecost): “Men of Israel, listen to this: Jesus of Nazarethwas a man accredited by God to you by miracles, wonders and signs, which God did among you through Him, as you yourselves know. This man was handed over to you by God’s set purpose and foreknowledge, and you, with the help of wicked men, put Him to deathby nailing Him to the cross…”(Acts 2:22-23)
(Paul to saints at Corinth” “…root out leaven of immorality”): “For Christ our Passover lamb has been sacrificed. Therefore let us keep the Festival, not with the old yeast, the yeast of malice and wickedness, but with bread without yeast, the bread of sincerity and truth.” (I Cor. 5:6-8). • “Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave Himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God”(Eph. 5:1-2).
“For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive by the Spirit…” • (I Pet. 3:18). • “…Jesus Christ, Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made Himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to death – even death on a cross!”(Phil. 2:5-8)
“…Jews and Gentiles alike are all under sin. As it is written: ‘There is no one righteous, not even one…All have turned away…there is no one who does good, not even one’…Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world held accountable to God. Therefore no one will be declared righteous in His sight by observing the law…But now a righteousness from God, apart from the law, has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by His grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. God presented Him as a sacrifice of atonement, through faith in His blood. He did this to demonstrate His justice, because in His forbearance He had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished – He did it to demonstrate His justice at the present time, so as to be just and the one who justifies those who have faith in Jesus.” (Romans 3:9 – 26).