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April 9, 2006
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The Passion of the Christ – “True or False”

April 9, 2006.  Pastor Matt

 

FROM THE PAMPHLET: It is OK to have doubts.  God isn’t afraid of your questions

 

-         Anyone have Jesus and all He said or did completely figured out?

-         If we are honest with each other, we all have doubt about Jesus.

o       To think we have the Son of God all figured out is a prideful thing.  In a way, it puts you above Him.

 

In Proverbs 8:17, as if Wisdom was the person speaking, He says, I love those who love me, and those who seek me find me.”

 

Matthew 7: 7-8, When Jesus was speaking of prayer- of asking God for some things, he says,

"Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.  For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.

 

-         I believer this not only applies to things but to understanding, to wisdom

 

James 1:5, tells us, If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to

all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.

 

FROM THE PAMPHLET:  You Don’t have to leave your mind behind to have faith in Jesus.

 

-         For those of you with doubts, ask the Lord to show you who Jesus is (today).

-         I hope that you will listen today to what is being said, and genuinely seek out some answers.  Remember the Bible promises that if you seek Him, you will find Him.

 

**Warning** Seeking Him means we must do something with Him once we find Him and figure out what He is all about.

 

Today, I’m going to ask you one question.  It is the same question Jesus asked His own diciples:

 

Matthew 16:13-16.

13When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, "Who do people say the Son of Man is?"  14They replied, "Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets."  15"But what about you?" he asked. "Who do you say I am?"  16Simon Peter answered, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God."

Who is Jesus?  Who do you say Jesus is?

 

(Is Jesus really who He says He is and did He do what He said He did?)

 

- Can you answer as Peter did?  Will you answer as Peter did?

 

Turn to John 12:9-13.

-         Jesus was hanging out in the town were He raised Lazarus from the dead, hanging out with Lazarus whom He had risen from the dead. 

9 …a large crowd of Jews found out that Jesus was there and came, not only because of him but also to see Lazarus, whom he had raised from the dead. 10So the chief priests made plans to kill Lazarus as well, 11for on account of him many of the Jews were going over to Jesus and putting their faith in him.

-         People put their faith in Jesus because of what He did.

 12The next day the great crowd that had come for the Feast heard that Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem. 13They took palm branches and went out to meet him, shouting,
   "Hosanna!"
   "Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!"
   "Blessed is the King of Israel!"

-         People put their faith is Jesus because they wanted Him to be their king

-         People to this day See Him as a great person

-         He was a prophet who could have been a king.

-         Today, people see Jesus the way they want to see him because they are looking to get something out of Him

o       “What’s in it for me?”

-         People have an idea of who Jesus is, but do we have it correct?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Flip a few more chapters ahead to John 18:28-38.

 

 28Then the Jews led Jesus from Caiaphas to the palace of the Roman governor. By now it was early morning, and to avoid ceremonial uncleanness the Jews did not enter the palace; they wanted to be able to eat the Passover. 29So Pilate came out to them and asked, "What charges are you bringing against this man?" 

 

-         In other words, who do you say Jesus is?  What do you say He has done?

 

30"If he were not a criminal," they replied, "we would not have handed him over to you." 

 

-         Some people see Jesus in a negative way because they don’t like what He has to say.  They don’t like what He has done.

 

31Pilate said, "Take him yourselves and judge him by your own law." "But we have no right to execute anyone," the Jews objected. 32This happened so that the words Jesus had spoken indicating the kind of death he was going to die would be fulfilled.  33Pilate then went back inside the palace, summoned Jesus and asked him, "Are you the king of the Jews?"  34"Is that your own idea," Jesus asked, "or did others talk to you about me?"  35"Am I a Jew?" Pilate replied. "It was your people and your chief priests who handed you over to me.

 

-         some people could care less who Jesus is because they think Who He is does not apply to them

-         They are indifferen t either way

-         The Truth is that you cannot be indifferent about Jesus.

o       When you are face to face with Him, you must choose

o       Pilot did not have to question Jesus privately, but something about Who He was moved Him to further action

 

What is it you have done?"  36Jesus said, "My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jews. But now my kingdom is from another place."  37"You are a king, then!" said Pilate.

 

-         Some people do not understand Jesus and because they do not understand Him, they make fun of Him

-         We often make fun of things we don’t understand

-         The world pokes fun of Christians because they don’t understand

o       The truth is that they are lost

-         we are the only “Religion” in the world that is not respected by the rest of the world

o       But that is OK, we are to be set apart

 

 

 Jesus answered, "You are right in saying I am a king. In fact, for this reason I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me."  38"What is truth?" Pilate asked. With this he went out again to the Jews and said, "I find no basis for a charge against him.

 

-         In this brief statement, Jesus says who He is.  Jesus was born (His reason for existence) was to testify to the truth.

-         Remember those first few verses I shared with you?

 

In Proverbs 8:17, as if Wisdom was the person speaking, He says, I love those who love me, and those who seek me find me.”

Matthew 7: 7-8, When Jesus was speaking of prayer- of asking God for some things, he says,

"Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.  For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.

James 1:5, tells us, If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to

all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.

 

-         Jesus is all the above.

-         He is wisdom, He is what you seek, He is the Truth.

 

Ecclesiates 3:11 [God] has… set eternity in the hearts of men;

 

-         Man is born with an inner desire to figure out the eternal. 

-         What happens when I die?  Is there a God? 

-         We are all born with a desire to find that something that is missing.

 

Man has been looking in all the wrong places.

 

Part of me believes that man looks the other way because they don’t want to accept the Truth. 

 

There is more proof in the bible than any other religion yet people will shoot down the bible, lower their standards and believe in something less believable!

 

Satan is out there promoting false religions.

 

Satan is out there deceiving the lost.  He is lying to the world about what they need.

 

Today we are going to set that straight.

 

Jesus is the answer.  No other proof is needed.

 

IN THE PAMPHLET (PAGE 4) Matthew 26:63-64.  Jesus, when asked, “Tell us if you are the Christ, the Son of God” answered “Yes, it is as you say.”

 

IN THE PAMPHLET (PAGE 5) John 14:6.  Jesus makes it clear to the world that “I am the way and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me.”

 

John 3:13-18.  John 5:24.  John 6:35.  John 6:51.  John 7:37-38.  John 8:12.  John 10:7-11.  John 11:25-26.  John12:44-46.

 

there are over 300 prophecies in the OT concerning the Messiah, which were fulfilled in the life, death & resurrection of Jesus.  The mathematical probability that even 8 of the prophecies about Christ’s death could be fulfilled by coincidence in one person is 1 in 1017. If you took 50 cent pieces and piled them 6 meters deep, it would cover all of Singapore.  Then, if you mark one, send blindfolded person to select the marked coin on first try!!  If this statistical impossibility holds true for only 8 of the prophecies, how much more so for 300!

 

The Truth is Jesus.  I could spend all day explaining the Truth to you, but I don’t need to.  You already know.

Romans 1:16-22.  I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile.

-         We are ashamed of the Gospel.  We are ashamed that we believe in something that sounds so unbelievable.  Shame on us.

17For in the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: "The righteous will live by faith."

Ah, the Truth of the matter…
Jesus is who He says He is but in order to understand Him completely, we must have faith.  We must live by faith.

18The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 20For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.

 

-         The truth is that within ourselves, we know the Truth.  The Truth is Jesus.  Yet, we choose to reject Him.

-         For those that ignore Him, the wrath of God is on the way. (We know this too.)

 21For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools

-         We all have been given a glimpse of truth.  What are we going to do with it?

 

 

-         Even though I could spend a while “proving” the Christian faith, I do not believe that is necessary…

                        …Most of us already know what is true. 

 

-         All that is left is to do something about what we know to be true.

 

-         I’m not saying this is a blind faith.

-         Remember the Bible said to seek Him.  The more we seek Him, the more we see proff of Who He is.  The more proof we have the easier it is to jump.

 

-         However, those of you waiting for 100% proof will never get it.

 

Why?

Romans 1:17.  For in the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: "The righteous will live by faith."

The final step is ours. 

 

Jesus is a chair.  Now sit on it.


I love the metaphor of a chair... Find the chair closest to you. Look at it closely. Examine its design. Is it structurally sound? Is it sufficiently engineered? Will the materials chosen by the manufacturer support your weight?

Most likely, you picked a chair that you believe will support you. That's belief. You applied logic, knowledge and experience to make an informed intellectual decision.

Now sit in the chair... That's faith! At one point, intellectual assent only goes so far. True living requires that we put our beliefs into action. Intellectual belief without actionable faith is hollow and meaningless...

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jesus is a guy pushing a wheelbarrow.  Hop in.

 

Have you ever heard about the guy who walked a tight rope across Niagra Falls? Many people watched him do it. To them he asked, "Do you believe I can walk a tight rope across the Falls?" They all replied, "Yes." They had already seen him do it.

Then he pushed a wheel barrow on a tight rope across Niagra Falls. When he completed the feat, he asked the onlookers, "Do you believe I can walk a tight rope across the Falls pushing a wheel barrow?" To that they replied unanimously, "Yes." Because they saw him do that too.

Finally, a buddy of the tight rope walker climbs into the wheel barrow and the tight rope walker pushes him across the Falls. Wow, what a daring feat! When they finished, the tight rope walker asked the crowd, "Do you believe I can walk a tight rope across the Falls pushing a wheel barrow with a person in it?" To that they exclaimed, "Yes!" For they were now believers in this guy's awesome abilities.

Then he looked at the crowd and asked, "Who's next?"

Closing

 

Today has been a simple challenge.  Jesus has revealed Himself as the Truth.  I challenge you to do something with the Truth today.

What Truth do you need to put faith in?

 

Life/ salvation

Finances

Marriage

Addictions

Emotions

Job

________________________________

 

I can’t force you. 

This is the One Thing in life that only you can truly make. 

There are many other choices we think or say we are making, but Jesus is the only choice we really make.  You can’t fake it with Him.

 

What will you do with Jesus today?