Sunday, April 29, 2007

Good Friday 2007

INTRODUCTION

Last Sunday was Palm Sunday, the Triumphal Entry.

During this last week, the week of the Passover, Jesus has cursed the fig tree, cleansed the temple, been questioned by the priests, Jesus has the Passover meal with the disciples on Thursday, which brings us to this day in time.

Friday, Good Friday. The day our Lord and Savior was tried, convicted and sentenced to death.

Each year millions of people celebrate today, because without the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, we would all be bound and destined for eternity in separation in Gehenna, the final eternal hell.

But because of this event, our relationship with the Father in heaven can be restored, and we can once again call out to the name of the Lord and be saved!

Jesus was arrested Thursday night, and instead of speaking on the trial of Jesus, I want to look at the trials we face, and our adversaries in life, sometimes they are people, sometimes circumstances, sometimes health issues, and I want to look at what took place earlier this Thursday because Jesus was betrayed.

Specifically, Jesus’ last time in prayer with the Father before his sacrifice.

PRAYER FOR THE HOLY SPIRIT AND UNDERSTANDING

SCRIPTURE READING

Matthew 26:36 – 46

36 Then Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to them, "Sit here while I go over there and pray." 37 He took Peter and the two sons of Zebedee along with him, and he began to be sorrowful and troubled. 38 Then he said to them, "My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me."

39 Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, "My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will."

40 Then he returned to his disciples and found them sleeping. "Could you men not keep watch with me for one hour?" he asked Peter. 41 "Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak."

42 He went away a second time and prayed, "My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may your will be done."

43 When he came back, he again found them sleeping, because their eyes were heavy. 44 So he left them and went away once more and prayed the third time, saying the same thing.

45 Then he returned to the disciples and said to them, "Are you still sleeping and resting? Look, the hour is near, and the Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. 46 Rise, let us go! Here comes my betrayer!"

The Unanswered Prayer of Jesus

TIMELINE OF EVENTS

  1. Passover meal – “The Last Supper” Thursday Night

Jesus taught the separation of man & God because of sin.

1. Our sin causes separation.

2. This unrighteousness keeps us from the Kingdom of God

3. This unrighteousness blocks our prayers from God’s ears

4. Outside of God’s Kingdom, we have no protection, no benefits, no blessings, no gifts, no fruits, because without salvation you can not have the Holy Spirit.

5. We need forgiveness, to be redeemed to the Father

Jesus taught fellowship restored through His blood.

1. He is the Lamb, the perfect sacrifice

2. Entered Jerusalem same day as Passover lambs

3. Examined by high priest in town square for blemish, found to be spotless in the spiritual sense, for He was a spiritual sacrifice, redeeming our souls

Jesus shared first communion, body broken, blood spilled.

1. bread-body broken because of our sin

2. blood-spilled for our redemption

3. “Do this” remembering what He has done for us

Jesus tells the disciples He must go and prepare a place where we can be with Him.

Jesus reveals to us, His betrayer.

  1. Gethsemane

Jesus was full of sorrow, and troubled (because He suffered for our sin)

1. Jesus never felt the pain of sin before

2. He never felt the anguish of separation from the Father

Not wanting to be alone because of His anguish, He asked Peter, John & James (2 sons of Zebedee) to stay with Him.

1. He felt so alone, He needed to surround Himself with friends

2. friends will fail you, can not replace God

For the first time, Jesus felt the pain and anguish of sin, and the sorrow of separation from the Father because of that sin.

1. “My soul is overwhelmed!”

Stay with me and keep watch (stay awake with me)

Jesus walked a little further, fell on His face and prayed to the Father in heaven.

“TAKE THIS AWAY…IF THERE IS ANY OTHER WAY, but not my will Father, but as you will.”

The disciples were sleeping.

1. “Could you not even stay awake for me for one hour?”

2. “Watch and pray you do not fall into temptation, the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

“TAKE THIS AWAY…IF THERE IS ANY OTHER WAY, but not my will Father, but as you will.”

They were asleep again.

“TAKE THIS AWAY…IF THERE IS ANY OTHER WAY, but not my will Father, but as you will.”

Three times Jesus prayed from this to be removed.

Pain, suffering, the separation from the Father, everything that is associated with sin that we feel inside.

He was asking also for there to be another way to accomplish this task.

A way other than the cross, and torture.

But there was no other way but God’s will.

And Jesus, although He prayed to the Father three times, was denied.

His prayer unanswered.

Because the Father’s will was the only way mankind could be redeemed.

The cross, although terribly painful, unimaginable, was the only way we could be reunited with the Father in heaven.

So that is the path Jesus followed.

Satan during Jesus’ temptation offered the easy road.

Jesus knew that was not the Father’s will, and did not accept the easy path.

We face trials in our lives.

Pain, suffering, guilt from unconfessed sin, perhaps illness or what ever is going on in our lives, we feel sometimes the tremendous sorrow and trouble as Jesus did.

Perhaps we are suffering from separation from our heavenly Father because we have never accepted Jesus’ sacrifice as payment for our debt of sin.

And we pray and pray for our Father to take it all away.

We pray and pray that our will be done.

Perhaps forgetting that the Lord’s ways are above our ways.

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