We are celebrating the Literal Greatest and Most Important Day...In the Christian Faith!
The Events leading to this Day...And the Events of this Day...GIVE US EVERY REASON...
To EMBRACE or DENY everything we believe!
Unfortunately... We now live in an age that can...In all practicality... Be called a "Godless Generation!" With little to no knowledge of the True Teachings of Jesus! With little to no knowledge...Of the solid, indisputable, historical facts...That Jesus was even a Real Person in History! Much less... Knowledge of the Incredible Prophecies...Provable beyond any reasonable doubt...Confirming God's Existence and Love!
Unfortunately... We live in an age where...Most have no idea... Of the Love & Sacrifice shown...On that First Easter... The True Purpose of their lives...Or the True Destiny of our near future!
We could not in one Sermon... Not in one whole DAY...Convey the powerful Proofs of this Day in History! We WILL look at enough for you to SEE TRUTH...If you are open to TRUTH... And NOT preconceived desires! Right now in our nation's... And our world's condition...
That Truth is more important than at any moment in history! So let's delve into a few of the Incredible FACTS...what this Day MEANS to you and I...And Celebrate together ... In a world of anger and darkness!
Christianity Is NOT Blind Faith!
No one... Looking at the wonders and complexity of Creation...If honestly considered... Can come to the conclusion...That we are accidental! Especially in this day and age of genetics and DNA! Where a single cell carries so much...Intelligent, readable, coded LANGUAGE & INSTRUCTION...
That a pinhead volume of DNA contains enough information to equal a stack of paperback books that would reach 500 times farther than the distance from the earth to the moon!! (1)
(1) In the Beginning Was Information, by Dr. Werner Gitt on May 6, 2008; last featured October 14, 2016, (Video #2, 18min.), Retrieved on 3-20-21 from https://answersingenesis.org/media/video/science/beginning-was-information/
And yet, an adult has enough uncoiled DNA to stretch to the sun and back 70 times!!! But if that means THERE IS A CREATOR...He would not Leave us in the Dark…About His Existence or Plan! He would WANT us to know! He Would Do It in such a Way...That It had to be Unmistakably HIM!
If the world decided that it wanted to do it's OWN THING...Live for themselves... And REBEL against Him...The first thing they would do…Is deny, ignore and suppress His Unmistakable Evidences! Until they became forgotten and mistrusted!
So let's open the Scriptures together...And be amazed at the Proof from Our God...Which has been denied, ignored and suppressed!
First... For those who have ever been tempted to believe...The popular... But totally fake and misinformed notion...That Jesus was NOT even a real person in history... Or that He was NOT crucified at this exact time...In history 2000yrs ago...Listen to these few... Trusted, accepted historians...Who have nothing to do with Christianity or the church!
Baraia – Writings Of Sanhedrin: (High Court of Jews!!)
This writing is a carefully preserved quote from the religious legal system that actually hated Christ in His time…The evidence here is most powerful…Because we get testimony about Christ from a hostile witness! One that would benefit if the evidence were not true!
“On the Eve of Passover they hanged Yeshu (of Nazareth)… But they found in Him naught in His defence and hanged Him on the eve of Passover.” (Babylonian Sanhedrin 43a)
Proof that He existed and was crucified... At Easter!
Listen to just this one additional SECULAR writer...Who hated Jesus... But told of His Existence & Death!
LUCIAN OF SAMOSATA, a satirist (mocking abusive writer) of the second century, spoke hatefully of Christ and mentioned Him as:
“…the man who was crucified in Palestine because he introduced this new cult into the world…Furthermore, their first lawgiver persuaded them that they were all brothers one of another after they transgressed once for all by denying the Greek gods and by worshipping that crucified sophist himself and living under his laws.” -The Passing Peregrinus
So like it or not, Jesus of Nazareth IS…A Real Figure in history…Who WAS crucified in Palestine...Who's Death was Recorded. On Passover... Easter!And established completely in SECULAR HISTORY!
Now I ask you to consider...The Painstakingly Complex and Intricate WAY...Which God Showed His Presence and Control over mankind...By Describing this Exact Moment of History...Years before It occurred...With COMPLETE DETAIL AND ACCURACY...Using many different people... In different Writings...Each describing different details…To paint a complete and perfect PICTURE! All GUARANTEED by any and every secular historian...
To be WRITTEN LONG BEFORE one event occurred!
Septuagint translated from Hebrew to Greek in 3BC! (280-250) To Show US... That it could not have been man... But GOD! Including the Precise Time, Precise Place, Precise Heritage, Precious Method, Precious Events, down to the last action! All so that He Could Point us to...The Most Important Day which would occur in History!
Our Scriptures... Are the Only "Holy Book" in history...To tell of GOD Coming to Earth...
HUNDREDS of years before He would COME...And then... Make it HAPPEN as Foretold...
So Powerfully... That the Event Split Time for all mankind!
Let's take the time we have today...To focus solely on the Prophecies which tell us of the Events...Surrounding Jesus' unusual and horrid Day of Crucifixion!
For 1400yrs God Caused the Israelites... (Exodus 12) To select an Unblemished Lamb... On the 10th of Nisan...And Sacrifice it on the 14th of Nisan! Which happens to historically be when Jesus Came into Jerusalem...An historically proven... Exactly when He Died on the Cross!...And the Israelites had to be covered under this Blood...In order to be saved from slavery and death!
So Jesus' Reason for Death...And exact day of Death...Were Foreshadowed for 1400yrs!
2000yrs before Jesus was to be Born...Abraham was told to go to Mount Moriah...
And sacrifice his only son to God! (Gen 22:1-19)
Obviously... God would NOT allow him to go through with it! But it did show much more than to test Abraham's faith! God brought a "Substitute Sacrifice" in place of Isaac!...And right there on Mt. Moriah...The place where Jesus would be Offered 2000yrs later...Abraham named the Place, "The-Lord-Will-Provide!"
What about the Bronze Serpent Lifted up in the desert? (Num 21) They looked upon their sin lifted up to be saved!
And the Rock which was struck in the desert? (Exodus 17)To bring forth water to save them!
Do you think these are accidental in their bizarre nature?
Next, the Prophet Daniel told us THREE AMAZING THINGS...500yrs before Jesus was to walk the earth!
Daniel 9:25 (HCSB)
25 Know and understand this: From the issuing of the decree to restore and rebuild Jerusalem until Messiah the Prince will be seven weeks and 62 weeks...
This prophecy tells of an EXACT DATE…The Messiah will Come to Mankind...And in history, from that Decree given by Artaxerxes...173,880 days later... Jesus arrived in Jerusalem!
Daniel gives a VERY CLEAR REASON...As to WHY this Messiah was to Come:
Daniel 9:24 (NKJV)
24 ... For your people and for your holy city, To finish the transgression, To make an end of sins, To make reconciliation for iniquity, To bring in everlasting righteousness, To seal up vision and prophecy, And to anoint the Most Holy.
This Event was to END SIN for mankind...And be the fulfillment of visions and prophecies!
Thirdly... Daniel gives a very mysterious…And seemingly senseless Prophecy... Remember... He is talking about Someone...Who Came to Save Mankind...
Listen to what is to HAPPEN to this Messiah-Savior!
Daniel 9:26 (HCSB)
26 After those 62 weeks the Messiah will be cut off and will have nothing. The people of the coming prince will destroy the city and the sanctuary.
This Messiah... Was to have a VIOLENT DEATH! Seemingly having been for nothing at the time!! Could anything describe the Events of Jesus' Crucifixion any more vividly and exactly?!
Lastly... Look closely at the very distinct and amazing thing...Which MOST PEOPLE MISS ENTIRELY! Shortly following His Death...The Temple is to be destroyed! Which literally, miraculously happened after Jesus was Crucified! (General Titus, 70AD)
DO YOU REALIZE WHAT THAT CLEARLY MEANS? Since the Messiah was to COME BEFORE...The Temple was destroyed...And Jesus Came... Followed by the it's destruction...
PROPHETICALLY SEALED... THERE COULD BE NO OTHER! JESUS... WAS... THE ONLY ONE WHO COULD BE MESSIAH!
Next... Look at the unexplainable details of Jesus' Death...Spelled out in horrific... But exact detail...By Writers from 1000 to 500 years before Jesus Died...Revealing a METHOD of Death...Unknown... And unused by the Israelites... (Crucifixion) Which was hundreds of years...And two cultures away... From even being invented yet! Watch the Description of Jesus' Death...Told as if it were happening that Day...After being foretold in time and purpose by other Prophets!
Isaiah 52:13-15 (HCSB)
13 See, My Servant will act wisely; He will be raised and lifted up and greatly exalted. 14 Just as many were appalled at You— His appearance was so disfigured that He did not look like a man, and His form did not resemble a human being— 15 so He will sprinkle many nations. Kings will shut their mouths because of Him, For they will see what had not been told them, and they will understand what they had not heard.
This describes Someone being beaten beyond recognition! As in the many beatings of Jesus by guards...And the unthinkable scourging...Which stripped away His Flesh from His back, arms, legs, sides, neck and even face! And the Hebrew Word for "Sprinkled" (Nazah - naw-zaw')...Means: "To spurt or spatter... Always with blood!"
Isaiah 53:3-5 (NKJV)
3 He is despised and rejected by men, A Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised, and we did not esteem Him. 4 Surely He has borne our griefs And carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted. 5 But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed.
Jesus was hated, rejected and Crucified by the Pharisees and mob around Him! They thought they were defending GOD by Killing Him!...But it was for US... That He Died!
Please see the meaning of the original Hebrew Words used!
WOUNDED: (Chalal - khaw-lal') Means: Pierced through, hollowed out!
BRUISED: (Daka - daw-kaw') Means: Beat to pieces, beat until crumbled!
STRIPES: (Chabburah - khab-boo-raw') Means: Scourging, stripes of bruised wounds…
Blows that cut in!
Rejected by men...Killed in the Name of God Unjustly...Pierced through... Beaten to literal pieces... Flesh bruised and cut open with striped wounds! All Describing the Messiah to Come...All before Crucifixion was invented!
Isaiah 50:6-7 (NKJV)
6 I gave My back to those who struck Me, And My cheeks to those who plucked out the beard; I did not hide My face from shame and spitting. 7 "For the Lord GOD will help Me; Therefore I will not be disgraced; Therefore I have set My face like a flint, And I know that I will not be ashamed.
This Describes Jesus' Humiliation and Abuse in His Beatings...And in His Public Disgrace...
As His Pure, Unswerving Strength in the Face of it all!! FOR US!
Matthew 26:67-68 (NKJV)
67 Then they spat in His face and beat Him; and others struck Him with the palms of their hands, 68 saying, "Prophesy to us, Christ! Who is the one who struck You?"
Now listen to the Description of His Walk to Death!
Isaiah 53:6-8 (NKJV)
6 All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the LORD has laid on Him the iniquity of us all. 7 He was oppressed and He was afflicted, Yet He opened not His mouth; He was led as a lamb to the slaughter, And as a sheep before its shearers is silent, So He opened not His mouth. 8 He was taken from prison and from judgment, And who will declare His generation? For He was cut off from the land of the living; For the transgressions of My people He was stricken.
Many suffering crucifixion... In fear and panic...Had to be herded or even dragged to the cross!
Jesus was silently led...As He tried to carry the 75 to 125lb patibulum (horizontal beam)! 1/4 mile up the hill of Calvary! Led from prison and judgment..."CUT OFF"... Meaning Destroyed, Exterminated!...And it was all to be done for...The SINS of the PEOPLE! US! All meticulously spelled out...700yrs before the Event we KNOW from History!
Isaiah 53:9 (NKJV)
9 And they made His grave with the wicked-- But with the rich at His death, Because He had done no violence, Nor was any deceit in His mouth.
This Prophecy is so Random, Unneeded... And Amazing! The Messiah was to Die with wicked men...(He was Crucified with two criminals!) But to be with the "Rich" in His Grave! We know that Jesus was Laid in the Tomb of a Rich Man!!
How could such exacting and detailed prophecies…Be fulfilled...Out of the control of Jesus...700yrs later
Isaiah 53:10-12 (NKJV)
10 Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise Him; He has put Him to grief. When You make His soul an offering for sin, He shall see His seed, He shall prolong His days, And the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in His hand. 11 He shall see the labor of His soul, and be satisfied. By His knowledge My righteous Servant shall justify many, For He shall bear their iniquities. 12 Therefore I will divide Him a portion with the great, And He shall divide the spoil with the strong, Because He poured out His soul unto death, And He was numbered with the transgressors, And He bore the sin of many, And made intercession for the transgressors.
This lesser read portion of Scriptures...Is One of the Greatest and Most Amazing of ALL!
It Says... He poured out His Soul unto DEATH...And yet… Then... His Days Will Be Prolonged...He Will See the Results of His Labor...These two Statements cannot be reconciled...Unless the One Who was Killed does what? Gets Raised from the Dead!
Just as this Prophecy States... Over 1000yrs before Christ!
Psalm 16:8-10 (NKJV)
8 I have set the LORD always before me; Because He is at my right hand I shall not be moved. 9 Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoices; My flesh also will rest in hope. 10 For You will not leave my soul in Sheol, Nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption.
Now listen... As this prophecy, Written 1000yrs before Jesus...Describes every detail of His Physical Crucifixion! And His Spiritual & Emotional Suffering!
Psalm 22:1, 6-18 (NKJV)
1 My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me? Why are You so far from helping Me, And from the words of My groaning?.. 6 But I am a worm, and no man; A reproach of men, and despised by the people. 7 All those who see Me ridicule Me; They shoot out the lip, they shake the head, saying, 8 "He trusted in the LORD, let Him rescue Him; Let Him deliver Him, since He delights in Him!" 9 But You are He who took Me out of the womb; You made Me trust while on My mother's breasts. 10 I was cast upon You from birth. From My mother's womb You have been My God. 11 Be not far from Me, For trouble is near; For there is none to help. 12 Many bulls have surrounded Me; Strong bulls of Bashan have encircled Me. 13 They gape at Me with their mouths, Like a raging and roaring lion. 14 I am poured out like water, And all My bones are out of joint; My heart is like wax; It has melted within Me. 15 My strength is dried up like a potsherd, And My tongue clings to My jaws; You have brought Me to the dust of death. 16 For dogs have surrounded Me; The congregation of the wicked has enclosed Me. They pierced My hands and My feet; 17 I can count all My bones. They look and stare at Me. 18 They divide My garments among them, And for My clothing they cast lots.
Listen to the writings of a well educated, early philosopher...Born within one generation of Jesus' Death... (AD 100-165) As he writes of what this prophecy was recognized as...
Even in HIS DAY...And the historical, Roman evidence available in his day...To verify every word as Historic TRUTH!
JUSTIN MARTYR, well educated philosopher, wrote 150 A.D.: (Important - read slowly)
“But the words, ‘They pierced my hands and my feet’ are a description of the nails that were fixed in His hands and His feet on the cross; and after He was crucified, those who crucified Him cast lots for His garments, and divided them among themselves; and that these things were so, you may learn from the ‘Acts’ which were recorded under Pontius Pilate.”
“That He performed these miracles you may easily be satisfied from the ‘Acts’ of Pontius Pilate” -Apology 1.48
This man appealed to the readers to prove what he said by looking it up under the local Govt. records!!!
So... Starting literally thousands of years...BEFORE Jesus was to Come to earth...God Spelled out every detail of the Day we are Celebrating today! The Day all of our FAITH hinges upon! God laid it out so that we COULD NOT MISS HIS HAND! No other RELIGION can touch this...No other proof is so sure in history...Of why we are here... And Who Jesus Truly IS!
THAT... IS WHY WE HAVE A GREATER REASON TO CELEBRATE ON THIS DAY... THAN AT ANY OTHER TIME IN OUR LIVES!!
I want to end with this desperate plea! The Ancient Prophecies which Spelled out…All of these Amazing Things...Also prophetically told us how the disciples would even react... At the Scene of His Death...
Zechariah 13:7 (NKJV)
7 "Awake, O sword, against My Shepherd, Against the Man who is My Companion," Says the LORD of hosts. "Strike the Shepherd, And the sheep will be scattered;
And yet... AFTER they SAW the incredible Events of Jesus' Resurrection! AFTER they saw first hand... How DEEPLY and SACRIFICIALLY HE LOVES REALLY US! They were so deeply changed...That they risked everything in life...And STOOD unashamed and unafraid... For their King...From that Morning... Until their deaths!
Listen to Peter's FIRST Declaration to the people…Who hated him… And Christ!
Acts 2:14, 22-24, 32, 36-41 (NKJV)
14 But Peter, standing up with the eleven, raised his voice and said to them, "Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and heed my words... 22 "Jesus of Nazareth, a Man attested by God to you by miracles, wonders, and signs which God did through Him in your midst, as you yourselves also know-- 23 Him, being delivered by the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God, you have taken by lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death; 24 whom God raised up, having loosed the pains of death, because it was not possible that He should be held by it... 32 This Jesus God has raised up, of which we are all witnesses... 36 "Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ." 37 Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, "Men and brethren, what shall we do?" 38 Then Peter said to them, "Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call." 40 And with many other words he testified and exhorted them, saying, "Be saved from this perverse generation." 41 Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them.
Did Peter love them and give them hope? Absolutely! But… Did Peter justify or empathize with their sins? To protect their feelings? Absolutely not! Because they stood against God...And THEY needed to change! For their own benefit and healing...And for them to ever come to know Christ!
So... We need to pause right now... Christian & Non-Christian alike... And decide how we will receive this Message! Because I have seen a number of people...Become amazed and excited with the Truths they finally see...Only to be coming back again this year... Years later...
Living the SAME unchanged lives!
I have seen a number of Christians...Continue to live their lives for Christ as a comfortable hobby! Bringing them comfort and security...Costing nothing... Demanding nothing...And they don't know they are poor and blind!
I have seen a number of Christians...More concerned for avoiding the sins of loved ones...
More concerned for bending to the people around them...Than they are concerned…For the Eternal life of those people...Than they are concerned for...Loving, Honoring and Trusting God!
Look around you... TIME IS UP! THE WORLD HAS COMPLETELY LOST IT'S WAY! YOU... ARE THE ONLY HOPE THEY HAVE...SO... STOP BEING AFRAID... STOP PATRONIZING...
STOP CONDONING THE WAYS OF THE WORLD!
YOU ARE NOT HELPING ANYONE! YOU ARE HURTING THEM! LIVE FOR GOD... OR LIVE FOR THE WORLD...BUT STOP STANDING ON THE FENCE! AND IF YOU ARE STILL WAITING TO ACCEPT HIM...STILL PUTTING OFF A DECISION...TO LIVE FOR THE ONE WHO DID ALL OF THIS FOR YOU...IT IS TIME... TO TRULY CELEBRATE WHAT THIS DAY MEANS...AND ACCEPT YOUR KING AND SAVIOR...
HE IS RISEN! LET’S GLORY IN HIM… WORSHIP HIM…LIKE WE BELIEVE IT… AND MEAN IT! THEN… LET’S START LIVING LIKE IT…SACRIFICIALLY… UNASHAMEDLY…UNTIL THE TRUMPET SOON SOUNDS!
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