FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH
309 East North St. Sidney, Ohio 45365
937-492-4909

Sunday School 9:15am

Sunday Worship Service 10:30am

 

Scripture:    Acts 2:22-23 & Romans 5:6-8

                                                                                                                           April 5, 2020

Sermon:       “Christ’s Death – No Accident!”                                                                                                           Pastor John Young

 

Years ago, a relative of mine stood before a church filled with Christians and related the following sad testimony.  He grew up in a Christian home and attended church services every Sunday.  He went to a Christian college, acquired a degree in pastoral ministries and later went to seminary to receive his masters in divinity.  His success didn’t stop there.  He was selected among his classmates to assume the prestigious position as lead pastor of the college campus church.  Several years later he would be called to assist a church plant in another state.  That church grew with many thousands in attendance.  He accomplished what most in ministry could only dream of, but then it happened!  At the peak of his success he got caught in a compromising situation, which led to more discoveries of misjudgments, lies, cover-up and addictions.  Within a few months, he lost his position at the church, his wife and kids.  Shortly afterward, he would find himself behind bars.  It was a sad, sad testimony of the power and consequences of sin.

At this time of the year, and especially on Palm Sunday, church attendees around the world prepare themselves to hear the story of Christ’s suffering and death on the cross.  Some of us have heard the story since we were small children and we’ve heard it so many times, I’m afraid the familiarity of the event lessens its impact on our minds.  I am surprised each year how many people, familiar with the death of Christ, still don’t understand His death was no accident.  We’ve heard how Pilate did this and the soldier’s did that and, as a result, many come to think that Christ was a victim of a Roman lynching.  Once again, God’s Word clears up this misconception!  Luke, the author of the book of Acts, informs us that Jesus was delivered by the determinate council and foreknowledge of God.  Jesus was more than a great teacher and wonderful example.  According to our second passage of scripture in Romans, we are given the purpose and reason Jesus came to this earth.  Let’s look at these verses of scripture together.

[According to this passage of scripture in Romans:]

I.   The Purpose of Christ’s death was to take our place (v-6b & 8b).

A.   The text identifies ‘us’ as “ungodly”’—verse 6, and “sinners”—verse 8.

1.  Many rebel with the association of such descriptive terms, but these terms are painfully true of all of us!

a.  The testimony of my relative which I spoke of earlier could be our testimony!

b.  Indeed, many of us find similarities in his experience, either by desire or choice!

c.  Sin has touched all of us!

d.  The Bible has declared: “For all have sinned!”

e.  God knew our propensity towards sin.  In fact:

B. Sin was the purpose of Christ’s death!

1.  Romans 6:23 says, “For the wages of sin is death!”

2.  Someone has to pay the price for sin!

3.  Our text says, “Christ died…” FOR US.

a.  He took our place!

b.  He paid our price!

c.  He took our condemnation!

1) Each stripe He received from the whip…

2) Every strike on the face…

3) Every prick of the thorns stuck in His brow…

4) Each nail pounded through His hands and feet…

5) Every fist full of beard ripped from His face…

6) Each incident was necessitated because of our sin!

[Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, loose living, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, disagreements, jealousy, wrath, strife, envyings, murders, drunkenness, partying, disobedience, cursing, lying, stealing, cheating, rebellion, etc.  Thirty-nine stripes on His back!  Unrecognizable in the face because of the severity of His beating!  SIN WAS THE PURPOSE OF CHRIST’S DEATH!]  He was truly a great teacher and wonderful example, but His main purpose for coming to this earth was to bare our sin in His own body; to pay for our sin!  In fact:

II. The Reason for Christ’s death, according to our text, is because of our hopelessness (v-6a)!

A. In God’s eyes there is no merit difference between the acts and behaviors of Ted Bundy and Mother Teresa or Billy Graham!

1.  Isaiah 64:6 says, “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags.”

2.  No acts of contrition; no commitment to religious duties, no amount of penance, no turning over of a new leaf will avail to remove sin’s stain!

a.  The Bible declares, “Not by works of righteousness which we have done” (Titus 3:5).

b.  WE ARE WITHOUT STRENGTH!

c.  There is nothing we can do!

B. The only hope we have is found in the grace, mercy, and unmerited acceptance of Christ Jesus.

1.  His death on the Cross-paid our sin debt (Romans 6:23).

2.  His “GIFT” is ‘eternal life.’

3.  Sin is a terrible taskmaster!

a.  The Bible says, “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy:”

1) The testimony I recalled at the beginning is an example of the thief’s work!

b.  Jesus goes on to say, “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.”

Conclusion: On this Palm Sunday, April 5th, what will you do with Jesus?  You only have one of two options.  You can reject Him, or you can receive Him.  He took your place.  He paid your debt.  He is the only hope you have.  What will you do with Him today?