TO/RN Lamb

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Well, if you’re here this morning wondering what in the world we’re going to talk about, I mean, this is Easter, man. The greatest event in human history is what we’re going to talk about, the resurrection of Christ. This is a holy day for us. Who placed their faith. And the Lord. Last year, we discussed the validity of Jesus and His resurrection. And one of the things I love talking about the validity, validity, and foundation of our faith as believers in Christ is that when you put your trust in Jesus, God doesn’t ask you to check your minding at the door. We think about faith, sometimes we have the tendency as people to think faith more works like Just a Shot in the dark. You just kind of pick one that you think looks good and you go with it. But when God created us as human beings, having made us in his image, he made us with body, soul, and spirit. The Bible tells us he calls us to love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind. And so when you put your faith in Christ, yes, there is joy to be experienced. But God doesn’t ask you to check your mind at the door. In fact, the Apostle Paul in first Corinthians chapter 15 and verse 17 said, If Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless. And he goes on to say, we’re the most pitied of all people.

But within the context of this very chapter, the Apostle Paul says, Jesus was resurrected. He overcame the grave. He appeared to people. He even appeared to 500 people at one time. And when the Apostle Paul was writing this, those people that had seen the resurrected Christ were still alive. And that means, according to what Paul is saying, if they wanted to validate his resurrection, they could go out and physically meet people who had seen the resurrected Lord. The disciples. Went on to give their lives for this profession. See Christianity, the foundation of Christianity. Isn’t this ideology or this concept that we want to think about, but it’s a person that we believe in. Our faith is in a person, the God man. And when you read the gospel accounts, you find the disciples, the early disciples that follow Jesus, the ones that he called the apostles, that when Jesus was crucified, they tucked tail and they ran to save their own hide. But something happened within a span of 40 days within their lives. No longer that. Were they afraid? In fact, in the book of acts in chapter four, when the disciples are taken before the Jewish leaders, they’re there scourged for their testimony in Christ. And they say, what shall we rather obey men than God? What happened? Bible tells us the resurrection of Jesus happened.

These apostles went on to give their lives. And their lives were based on the resurrection of Jesus. They laid it all down for Christ. This morning. I’m going to stop on the validity of the resurrection. But I just want you to know if if you’re here this morning, maybe even someone drug you. I don’t know, it’s Easter. We have lots of people that come to church on Easter. And so if you’re wondering about this, Jesus, is it something that you can really put your faith in, or is it just another teaching that’s out there? We have books available for all of us called The Case for Easter to help us understand that when it comes to following Christ, following Christ is about checking your mind at the door. But God, God asks us to worship him with all our hearts, with all our soul, with all our mind, with all our strength. He gave us a mind for a reason. Our faith can rest in him. This morning. What I want to talk to us about is the proclamation that was given of Jesus when he when he began his early ministry. If I were to ask you this morning, if you were to broadcast the coming of Jesus to the world, if you were to declare the world something about Christ, what phrase would you say? How would you introduce him? In John chapter one and verse 29.

John the Baptist does just that. On the Jordan River, he introduces Jesus. And he gives this proclamation in John said, Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world. Not only the identity of who Jesus is and what he represents, but the necessity of why Jesus came to this earth. The Lamb of God, and the purpose is to take away the sins of the world. John’s acknowledging within a statement. We live in a torn world. John acknowledges that really, the the world is fatally torn. We need the the effects of sin removed. Sin affects our lives both spiritually, relationally, physically. Our world is broken and torn. You see the evidence of a broken world relationally in Isaiah 59 and verse two, it says, in regards to God, sin has hidden his face from you. We experienced that same tension and sin in our relationships with each other. Physically, mentally, emotionally. Romans 822 tells us all of creation groans. In Second Corinthians four four. That our minds are darkened. That spiritually we are created for the glory of God in first Corinthians 1031 but Ephesians two one says this we are dead in our trespasses and our sins. The Bible talks about death. It literally means separation. Not a ceasing of existence. But a separation from what you were designed to be. We as people experience death. When our bodies go into their grave, the spirit is separated from the body.

The Bible also talks about the second death in revelation 21 and verse six that coming before the Lord. There is a spiritual separation from him. Death is all about separation. And Romans 512 it says this just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and so sin spread to all men. Romans 623 the wages of that sin is death. Some of us here, we see that we’re torn by sin because of something we have done, and others of us see that the world is torn by sin because of something that’s been done to us. As a matter of fact, if you were to turn on the TV before you came to church this morning just to catch some morning news, you would have seen something broadcast at about 148 people slaughtered in Kenya. All because they said there were believers in Christ. Our world is torn. I think for us as human beings, there is no better place than we discover that than in death itself. Losing a loved one. Grieving at a depth that we can’t even express emotionally. Something deep within our souls just says this isn’t right. And the truth is, it isn’t. Because when God created us, he created us for life. And this lamb who comes to take away the sins of the world, is coming to reconcile the curse of sin, which is death, that we again could have life in him as he gives his life for us.

You start off this morning talking about sin and and it’s important to discuss. But maybe you’re you’re like me and you think, you know, I don’t want to I don’t want to focus on on what I was, but I want to look to the future and what I can become. I don’t want to offer problems. I want to look to solutions. I don’t like losing, I like victory. And that’s exactly what John says this morning. The world is torn, the world is lost, the world has sin, and all of us face the suffering. And deep in our souls we know it’s not right. And the solution? The problem with relationship. The spiritual problem we face. Physical problems we face. The mental and emotional hardships that we face comes in the declaration in which John gives to us. The lamb. Who takes away the sin of the world. Genesis chapter three. The first sin is done. Adam and Eve elevate themselves to a position in which they think they could become God. And so the curse falls. Sin falls under the world, and now all of creation groans. But in Genesis chapter three, the Bible tells us that God in Adam and Eve sin pursues them. And in verse 15 he gives this promise. That from the seed of a woman. Not from the man.

To the birth of a virgin. One will come. And he will crush the kingdom of Satan. While Satan gives him a heel wound. The proclamation. Of redemption from the torn world in sin. The book of Exodus. The Bible tells us the very next book after Genesis, that the people of Israel find themselves in slavery, crying out to God. They they know they’re under the weight of sin, the curse of the sinful world, and they’re calling out to God to be rescued. And God calls a man named Moses, and he tells him to go before Pharaoh and tell to the Pharaoh, let his people go. I’m sure when you get out of here today, you can listen to Charlton Heston say it. And Pharaoh continued to reject. And finally. God brings the last curse, the last plague on the nation of Egypt. And he tells the people of Israel, Israel, the death angel is coming, and the death angel will require the life of the firstborn of every family in the land. But to escape this death. Angel. I want you to sacrifice a lamb. God Records in the Book of Exodus in chapter 12, verses 1 to 13. The outline of this lamb. He was to be perfect, spotless, without blemish. He was to be a male. He was to be sacrificed. And the blood of this innocent lamb would rescue you from the death angel that was coming.

If you by faith would slaughter this lamb and apply its blood over your doorpost. When this death angel would come, he would pass over your home. Apply the blood. For almost 1500 years, the nation of Israel continued to celebrate this Passover faithfully before the Lord. Every year it would go before the temple and this Passover celebration. Families would bring the animals and they would make the sacrifice. And literally a blood, a river of blood would just flow from the temple. For 1500 years. The celebration continued until the last 400 years of the coming of Jesus when God goes silent. Before the nation. Josephus, a Jewish historian over those 400 years, records that Israel no longer has a prophet. The nation of Israel continued to celebrate this Passover. But God for 400 years is silent. Until the Gospels begin. In Luke chapter one and verse five, the Bible records for us the parents of John the Baptist, who proclaimed, Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world. It says, after 400 years of silence in Luke chapter one and verse five, there was a priest named Zacharias, and he had a wife from the daughter of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. It goes on to tell us that they would have a son, and his name was John. And John would give the declaration of the coming of Jesus just months before Jesus’s arrival on the scene.

The beauty. Of the people that God has chosen. And to show the glory of his sovereign hand. In these moments when God chooses these two people, I don’t think he just randomly selected someone. Because the name Zacharias in Hebrew literally means God remembers. And the name Elizabeth means his promise. And God starts the New Testament declaring to us as people. God remembers his promise. From Genesis chapter three to the living of the Lamb and Exodus chapter 12, and the shedding of its blood. God remembers the promise of redemption that would ultimately come through a virgin who would give birth to crush the kingdom of Satan. Why slaughter an innocent lamb? I think God used the life of an innocent lamb as an illustration for us. Well, sometimes as people we forget there is a cost to sin and we undermined. Its power. The lamb is a sobering reminder that death reminded them that sin has a cost. Sometimes, as people, we don’t realize how desperate we need God to give us life. We get so focused on what we call life on earth, not realizing we’re created for eternal life, and we forget that we will ultimately face death. But death of an innocent lamb kept their eyes towards redemption. So when the people of Israel would go to the temple. I didn’t go to the temple because they were worthy. They didn’t go to the temple because they they impressed people by their spirituality.

They went to the temple because of sin. It was a reminder of the redemption that they required and seeing the loss of an innocent lamb. Reminded them of the wage of their sin and how much they needed redemption, that God had rescued them from the land of Egypt, a slaves and the curse of sin. And God would ultimately rescue them from the curse of sin that rests on the entire world. When John gives this declaration, Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world. The beauty of the story it tells us in the Gospels is when Jesus comes up next to John to validate the testimony of John and to validate the authority of Christ, that the father also speaks from heaven. And in Mark chapter one and verse 11 it says this you are my beloved son, and you I am well pleased. The father is saying this over Christ. To our English trained ears. To read a passage like this, we would look at that and say, that’s great. The father thinks Jesus is great. You know, it’s good. I mean, that’s a good start. But what the father is doing here in the mind of a Jewish context, is declaring the authority of who Jesus is, because when the father is making his stamp of approval on Christ, he’s quoting from the Old Testament.

He’s quoting from Psalm chapter two and verse seven when he says, you are my beloved son. He’s quoting from Isaiah chapter 42 and verse one when he says, in you I am well pleased. In the nation of Israel, they knew what those chapters of the Bible stood for. In Psalm chapter two. It is the messianic psalm when a king was anointed to take his new position as king over Israel, they would sing Psalm two in celebration of God providing for them a king. Isaiah 42 to chapter 4053. That’s the chapter of The Suffering Servant. Describes for us at the end of chapter 53, the grief in which Jesus would bear on our behalf. It says he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, but he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities. And the punishment that brought us peace was on him. And by his wounds we are healed. The father is saying. The King. The Anointed One. The promised lamb. Has come. To serve. By death. For you. He became sin who knew no sin that we might become the righteousness of God in him. And the beauty of Jesus. He never held a political office. He never wrote a book. He only had 12 followers. That followed him closely and intimately, and at the end of his life they ran away. The great speeches and messages that Jesus preached that we read about in the Bible were oftentimes out in the desert.

Away from the cities. And yet he transformed the world. How? Resurrection from the grave on your behalf and mine. Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. And first Peter chapter one and verse 18, it says this, for you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold, that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. He is the lamb. John’s desire for us this morning, John chapter one and verse 29, the reason the lamb came to take away the sins of the world is so that you could behold him. To not let a moment like this pass you by. If there were another way. If there were a better way. If there were a different way. Jesus would have never come. But there is the significance of what Christ has done. Ravi Zacharias, in his book Recapturing the Wonder, writes a story about his children, and he writes this book and this in this way that he has learned more about his relationship to the Lord, watching his children than the theologians he has perused through in his life. And he said, the reason was this he uses this illustration in the life of his children. He says he has this two year old son, his four year old child, an eight year old.

And he sits down and he tells him a story and he says, this young man stood up and he went to the door, and he opened the door and out jumped a dragon. And he said. The eight year old was mesmerized by the story and the fact that a dragon jumped out from behind the door, and the four year old was amazed that she could get up and she could walk to the door and to think about what could possibly be behind it. But the two year old was just happy that they could get up and walk. All of them were amazed. But all of them were amazed for different reasons. I share that you as a church this morning. Frost is to pause in our hearts and recognize and worship and praise the simplicity and beauty of who Christ is. Because here’s the truth. The older you get. And the more you live life. Lesser impressed with the day to think things that you’ve experienced. But I can promise you this. You knew this morning. It’s Easter and we’re talking about the resurrection of Christ. And there is nothing more outstanding. There is no love that could have been lavished on you more greatly. There is. There is no prize that could have been paid to to measure the worth that God has placed on you than what Jesus has done this morning.

And it’s important for us as a two year old child, amazed by the fact that they can even get up and walk for us. And no matter where we are in our relationship with God, beginning or or have known Jesus for years, the simplicity of this message and the beauty of what it means for us as people in order to honor and worship the King who has given everything for us. If you came with the curse of the world on you this morning and someone were to say, like a doctor, were to take you in his office and say, you know, your your kidneys aren’t working or, or your liver’s done or, or whatever it is, and and you’re thinking now, now your time on earth is limited. And someone walked into this room and just said, you know, I’m going to give you mine. That you can have life. And you think of the value that you would see of this person in making such a tremendous sacrifice. And maybe, maybe you’re like me at a gift like that, you would just pause and think, man, I’m not even worthy of that. You’re offering your life for me. Why would you even do that? And this life. It’s temporary. Think of how much more important eternity is. And Jesus worthy, perfect. Spotless. Innocent lamb. King who is servant.

Offering his life for you. God. We’re not. We’re not worthy of a life like that. But he gave it anyway. And so our response to a king who would do such a thing and lavishing a love that we could never, never hope to, to have measured in any other format other than the beauty of Christ and what he’s done. Just to look at that and from our heart, just praise the King who was worthy. John says to behold him. There’s a story that’s told within Scripture in Second Kings chapter five, and it’s it’s weird. Bible tells weird stories, doesn’t it? Second, Kings five is one of those weird stories that tells about the life of a man named Naaman. And the weird thing about this story is he’s not even Jewish, which the Old Testament predominantly deals with Jewish faith. And, and and Naaman is not even discussed beyond Second Kings chapter five. It’s just this story stuck in Scripture. Until Luke chapter four and verse 27. When Jesus references this story. Beginning of the story goes like this. Now naming captain of the army of the King of Aram was a great man with his master and highly respected, because by him the Lord had given victory to Aram. The man was also a valiant warrior. But he was a leper. Story name and works like this. It’s the same for all of us. We all have weaknesses.

We all have something in our life that reminds us of the curse, right? Naamans in this story is leprosy. You see, as you read the story on that, he he struggles with this leprosy. He wants to remove it from his life. He has no power to do it. He finally finds the solution in the Lord. But but what Naaman does is what all of us do. Don’t look at my weaknesses. Matter of fact, let’s sweep that aside and let me show you my strengths. So when I walk out of my house on Sunday morning to come to church or whatever it is, I want to put my best foot forward. But reality, when I step off this platform and I go home, you guys have no idea how I treat my family. What I say to my kids. How I love my wife. So I could be just like Naaman. I put my best foot forward. Impress you with whatever gift I might have. But in reality, there’s something in the dark that I just keep to myself. It’s a two truths I know about naming this morning that all of us have. It comes in the last phrase, but he has. He was a leper. Two truths is this? We all have a but. And we all know how to cover it. There you go. You know it’s true. Let’s not focus on the bad. Let’s not focus on the sin.

In fact, if we could just ignore it and pretend like everything’s okay. Maybe even. And the point when it comes to God, we think about covering it religiously. But the Bible says this to us in Isaiah chapter 64 and verse six. For all of us have become like one who is unclean. This word unclean is literally the word that they would use for leprosy. All of us have a but. And all of us feel like we could just put our best foot forward. But the truth is. Jesus sees your heart. Jesus knows why he came. Jesus didn’t offer his life because he thought it was a good suggestion. Jesus offered his life so that you could have life because he understood. There’s things in this world that we recognize where we we are fallen. That we aren’t perfect, that we fall in sin, that we struggle, that we have shortcomings, that when it comes to God, if his standard is perfection, there is no no way I could ever hope to meet that. All of us. I’ve become like one who is unclean. And rather than cover yourself with things that won’t impress God. You have the opportunity to cover yourself in the perfect lamb. But has the death angel passes by. The blood of Christ given for you could be applied to your heart because you were created for life. And Jesus said, I am the way, the truth, and the life.

It’s not a philosophy. It’s the identity of a person and your position in him. The Bible tells us in second Corinthians 517, if if you are in Christ, you are a new creation. Old things have passed away. Behold, all things have become new. If anyone is in Christ. The key to that word is if anyone, anyone is in Christ, that’s anyone Jesus has come to die for. Here’s the beauty of his death. When he died. For you and for me. He died for all of it. Past. Present. Future. Send. Christ covered it all. And so cloaking yourself and the beauty of the lamb. Gives life for us as people. John 316 is the most probably famous verse in all of the Bible, and it just simply says this for us as people. For God so loved the world. It is a love that cannot be matched that he gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in him, which is a form of the word, trust in him and what he is proclaiming shall not perish, shall not experience death, shall not be separated, but have eternal life. Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. Knowing that all of us have become like one who is unclean. Because of Christ. Your history does not determine your identity, nor does it set your destiny.

Rather, his story determines your identity and destiny. As he hung on the cross and said, paid in full. By faith. You belong to him. Precious is the lamb on this day. Who takes the weight of sin upon his shoulders. Jesus made it this simple for us. He paid the cost. He gives you choice. Whoever believes in him. Has eternal life. Stop covering your butt. That’s why Jesus came. Stop covering it and be covered in him. This morning. If if that is you, it happens this easy. You you turn to Christ and say, Jesus, no more. No more of myself, no more covering myself with myself. God, I know it falls short, but Lord, I’m looking to what you have done on my behalf. King, my God who became flesh and died for me, that I could have life in him. Lord, I’m just trusting in that. And you you if you’ve placed your faith in Christ. Here’s my hope for you. Be two years old. Faith like a child. Just be two years old this morning. Look at the love that’s been lavished. Look at the sacrifice that’s been made. Let your spirit just well with joy at a king who offers you such an eternal hope in him. That when the rest of the world is dog eat dog some somebody gave his all for you. And it just so happened. To be the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. That you. Could have life in him.

Old is the New Young

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