Saturday, July 30, 2011

They have Met With The Lord Jesus Christ


Matthew 28:8-10

So they went out quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to bring His disciples word. (Matthew 28:8)

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The women had come to the tomb with an emotion of sympathy.

That emotion of sympathy was turned into an emotion of fear when they met with the angel.

And tremendous joy as they left the tomb.

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They ran into the city to find the disciples.

They wanted to tell them the message from the angel.

The Lord Jesus Christ had risen from the dead.

They were to see the Lord Jesus Christ in Galilee!

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And as they went to tell His disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, "Rejoice!" So they came and held Him by the feet and worshiped Him. (Matthew 28:9)

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As they went to tell His disciples, they met with the Lord Jesus Christ!

The Lord Jesus Christ met them on their way!

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He was in resurrection glory.

He was in physical form right on the road.

He was alive from the dead!

And He said to them, "Rejoice!"

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This took them to their fourth emotion.

They were filled with joy.

Now their joy had turned into worship!

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Immediately they held the Lord Jesus Christ by the feet and worshiped Him.

They knew who He was.

They knew He was the risen Christ.

And they knew He was to be adored and praised and glorified and worshiped and honored.

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Then Jesus said to them, "Do not be afraid. Go and tell My brethren to go to Galilee, and there they will see Me." (Matthew 28:10)

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The evidence was there.

It was true!

The Lord Jesus Christ had risen!

They were grasping the living Christ.

Now their worship turned to a new emotion.

There was a new feeling and a new attitude of hope.

And their hope was so clear now.

And they would again see Him in Galilee.

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Oh! They have met with the Lord Jesus Christ!



Sunday, July 24, 2011

What Do We See At The Cross?


Matthew 27:45-53

Now from the sixth hour until the ninth hour there was darkness over all the land. (Matthew 27:45)

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1. We see the wrath of God depicted in supernatural darkness.

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From 12 noon to 3 in the afternoon, the land became dark instantaneously.

The darkness at the crucifixion of the Lord Jesus Christ represents God’s divine judgment.

The cross was the place for the pouring out of His wrath.

The darkness at the cross is His judgment of sin.

And the Lord Jesus Christ was the recipient of divine judgment.

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And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?” that is, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” (Matthew 27:46)

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2. We see the holiness of God when He turned His back on His Son.

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After experiencing the fury of God, the Lord Jesus Christ cried out as He was separated from God.

God the Father turned His back on the Lord Jesus Christ because He can’t look on sin.

When God the Father turned His back on the lord Jesus Christ, He was confirming that the Lord Jesus Christ was bearing our sin.

The Lord Jesus Christ bore the weight of all the sin of all the ages.

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And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice, and yielded up His spirit. (Matthew 27:50)

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3. We see the Lord Jesus Christ voluntarily gave up His life.

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The Lord Jesus Christ has power over death and life.

No one took His life from Him; He freely gave it.

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Then, behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom (Matthew 27:51a).

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4. We see total access to God's holy presence.

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When the Lord Jesus Christ died, the veil was ripped from top to bottom.

At that very moment, the temple would have been filled with pilgrims and priests performing sacrifices.

Suddenly, to the horror of everyone, the Holy of Holies was exposed.

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The Lord Jesus Christ had paid the penalty for sin.

God throws His arms wide open to sinners.

We now can rush into the presence of God.

The separation no longer exists.

Te death of the Lord Jesus Christ removed it.

The barrier is no more.

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And the earth quaked, and the rocks were split, (Matthew 27:51b).

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We see a guarantee of God’s future Judgment.

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At the death of the Lord Jesus Christ, God the Father brought about a devastating earthquake in Jerusalem that split open rocks and created fissures in the ground.

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When God shook the earth at the death of the Lord Jesus Christ, He was giving the world a taste of what will happen in the future when the King returns.

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And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; and coming out of the graves after His resurrection, they went into the holy city and appeared to many. (Matthew 27:52-53)

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6. We see a guarantee of the resurrection of all who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ.

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It was a real resurrection of bodies, not just spirits.

Not all bodies were raised, only select Old Testament saints.

They went into the holy city to testify to believers.

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The cross is the greatest hope for resurrection.

The Lord Jesus Christ had paid for our sin on the Cross.

We are free from death and free to live.

And in His kingdom we will have glorified bodies like His.

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What do you see at the cross?


Monday, July 18, 2011

Common Methods To Correct Wrong Doing


Matthew 27:1-10

After the Sanhedrin’s midnight court, the leaders hauled the Lord Jesus Christ to Pilate’s chamber to plead the death penalty.

It was then clear to Judas Iscariot that the Lord Jesus Christ would die.

Judas Iscariot was remorseful.

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1. Judas Iscariot wanted to do the right thing.

But what Judas did was not enough.

It was not true repentance.

True repentance involves our minds, emotions and will.

We must know that sin is wrong and desire to change.

We must have a profound hatred for sin because it offends God.

And we must decide to turn from sin and turn to God in faith.

True repentance involves every aspect of our being.

The remorse Judas Iscariot felt was a self-centered guilt.

He felt bad that he did wrong.

But God does not enter the picture.

The guilt he felt was all about himself.

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2. The chief priests and elders denied responsibility.

When Judas told them that he had betrayed innocent blood, they simply responded "What is that to us? You see to it!"

They were glad to make use of Judas Iscariot in the sin.

When Judas Iscariot offered to betray the Lord Jesus Christ, they did not push him away.

But when Judas realized that what he did was wrong, they kept their distance.

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3. The chief priests and elders tried to do good to ease their guilty conscience.

They would not take back the blood money.

So Judas Iscariot hurled the coins into the temple.

Then they picked the bloody money up.

They consulted together and bought the potter's field, to bury strangers.

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4. Judas Iscariot committed suicide

Judas Iscariot, so overwhelmed with grief, suffocated by his own sin and not knowing how to get rid of the guilt, hanged himself.

Judas Iscariot had a sense of his sinfulness.

But didn’t grasp the mercy of God.

He was crushed by the load of his own iniquity.

In betraying the Lord Jesus Christ, he did not commit a sin that could not be forgiven, for his sin was no greater than that of Peter’s denial.

What drove him to utter despair was that he would not look to the Lord Jesus Christ.

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Lesson:

In sorrow, do not ignore the gospel.

Never think you are in too desperate a condition for God’s love.

There is a repentance which can renew.

But a remorse feeling will only ruin even more.


Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Betrayed With A Kiss


Matthew 26:47-50

And while He was still speaking, behold, Judas, one of the twelve, with a great multitude with swords and clubs, came from the chief priests and elders of the people.

Now His betrayer had given them a sign, saying, "Whomever I kiss, He is the One; seize Him."

Immediately he went up to Jesus and said, "Greetings, Rabbi!" and kissed Him.

But Jesus said to him, "Friend, why have you come?"

Then they came and laid hands on Jesus and took Him.

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The Lord Jesus Christ was betrayed by one of His disciples.

He was then arrested to be executed on a cross.

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The Lord Jesus Christ was speaking to His 11 disciples when the crowd approached Him, climbing up the Mount of Olives.

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It was Judas Iscariot who betrayed Him, one of the 12.

It was hard to believe that Judas Iscariot who knew the Lord Jesus Christ intimately would betrayed Him.

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Judas Iscariot arrived with the multitude early Friday morning.

He was motivated by greed.

He was also possessed by Satan at that time.

He rallied the Jewish leaders and Roman soldiers to capture the Lord Jesus Christ.

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Satan knew the right moment had come.

He entered into Judas Iscariot to see the plan to its conclusion.

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The servant of the high priest was with the crowd.

He was an important person, serving as an assistant to the high priest, who held the highest religious office in the land.

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It was dark.

They needed a sign so they wouldn’t grab the wrong person.

Judas Iscariot chose to use a kiss to signal the betrayal.

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A kiss was a sign of affection, love, and intimacy.

The kiss of Judas Iscariot was most despicable.

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It would be bad enough to betray a friend.

But Judas Iscariot sold out the very Son of God!

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It was inconceivable that a man could return such treachery for divine love.

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As soon as the Lord Jesus Christ came into view, Judas Iscariot said, "Greetings, Rabbi!" Then he kissed Him.

But the Lord Jesus Christ said to him, "Friend, why have you come?"

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Judas Iscariot was a false disciple.

He loved money.

He lived for today.

He wanted glory and success.

He had a greater regard for things than he did for God.

He had a greater desire for self than He did for the Lord Jesus Christ.

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Judas Iscariot kissed the Lord Jesus Christ to kill Him.

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But Judas Iscariot was not the only one.

People like him exist in every age, even today.

They pretend to love the Lord Jesus Christ.

But in reality are greedy, deceitful, and hypocritical.

They follow the Lord Jesus Christ for what they might receive: a salved conscience, peace of mind, reputation, self-satisfaction, or improved profits in business.

They would sell the Lord Jesus Christ if they could see greater gain somewhere else.

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One day we will find ourselves in our own garden of Gethsemane.

Will we stand with the crowd?

Will we betray the Lord Jesus Christ like Judas Iscariot?

Will we run away with the disciples?

Or will we stand beside the triumphant Savior?


Thursday, July 7, 2011

The Betrayer Revealed


Matthew 26:20-25

When evening had come, He sat down with the twelve.

Now as they were eating, He said, “Assuredly, I say to you, one of you will betray Me.”

And they were exceedingly sorrowful, and each of them began to say to Him, “Lord, is it I?”

He answered and said, “He who dipped his hand with Me in the dish will betray Me. The Son of Man indeed goes just as it is written of Him, but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been good for that man if he had not been born."

Then Judas, who was betraying Him, answered and said, "Rabbi, is it I?"

He said to him, "You have said it."

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It is now after six o’clock on Thursday evening.

Later in the night the Lord Jesus Christ will be captured and brought to a mock trial early in the morning.

Then He will be crucified and die around three o’clock on Friday afternoon.

The Lord Jesus Christ and His disciples had to eat the Passover meal Thursday night before midnight, and nothing could be left in the morning.

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When anyone shared a meal with another person in that part of the world and at that time in history, he was identifying himself as a friend.

The idea of eating a meal with someone and then turning him over to his executioners was unthinkable.

When the Lord Jesus Christ told the disciples that one of them would deliver Him over, they knew one of them would do it, knowing that the Lord Jesus Christ would tell the truth.

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"And they were exceedingly sorrowful"

That is a strong way to indicate the degree of their sadness and grief.

Some may have even cried.

They didn’t know whom the Lord Jesus Christ was talking about.

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They didn’t know it was Judas because he was a capable hypocrite, excellent at playing out his masquerade.

Judas was so adept at his hypocrisy that the rest of the disciples had actually chosen him to be their treasurer.

They didn’t have any doubt about his integrity.

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"And each of them began to say to Him, "Lord, is it I?""

Even they didn’t trust themselves regarding their possibly betraying the Lord Jesus Christ.

That shows great integrity on the part of the disciples.

They knew that deep down inside them was a sinful principle so ugly, it might lead them to betray the One they loved.

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He answered and said, "He who dipped his hand with Me in the dish will betray Me."

The Lord Jesus Christ and His disciples ate with their hands, dipping the bread, the herbs, and perhaps even the lamb.

When the Lord Jesus Christ said, "He who dipped his hand with Me in the dish," He could have been referring to any of the twelve because they all were dipping food into the dish.

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"The Son of Man indeed goes just as it is written of Him."

The Lord Jesus Christ was not a victim of a plan gone wrong.

His betrayal is exactly what God had planned.

No one did anything to the Lord Jesus Christ that was not a direct and immediate fulfillment of God’s eternal plan.

That was the divine plan.

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Judas was a betrayer, but a betrayer by his own choice.

He rejected grace and the offer of salvation.

He made his own choices, yet God in His marvelous sovereignty used Judas’s betrayal to accomplish His holy purposes.

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"But woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed!"

The man who betrayed the Lord Jesus Christ is cursed.

Judas had no desire to usher in the Kingdom of God on the Lord Jesus Christ’s terms.

He had no desire for the salvation of the world.

The OT predicted that the Lord Jesus Christ would die on a cross.

It was written that He would die on the cross for the sins of the world.

Yet even though that was in the plan of God, the man who turned the Lord Jesus Christ over is still a cursed man.

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"It would have been good for that man if he had not been born."

It would have been better to have never been born than to endure what Judas would endure – existence in eternal hell.

The degrees of punishment in hell are related to one’s level of rejection: the more truth you understand and reject, the greater one’s punishment in hell.

Therefore, the severest damnation in hell is reserved for Judas.

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Judas rejected the very One he had lived with for three years.

Judas made his own choices, and they were the source of his own damnation.

Yet the choices fit perfectly into the sovereign plan of God.

God controls not only the good, but also the evil of man to accomplish His own ends.

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The Lord Jesus Christ doesn’t identify the betrayer in Matthew 26:24; He just pronounces damnation on him.

He gave Judas ample opportunity for salvation and repentance.

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Then Judas, who was betraying Him, answered and said, "Rabbi, is it I?"

Judas had to say that.

If he had said nothing, he would have been unmasked.

He had to play the game.

Everyone else asked the Lord Jesus Christ that question, so he had to say it.

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He said to him, "You have said it."

The betrayer was finally revealed!


Friday, July 1, 2011

Then The Judgment Day


When the Lord Jesus Christ comes in His glory, He will come with all the holy angels.

And He will sit on the throne of His glory.

All the nations will be gathered before Him.

And He will separate them one from the other, just as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats.

He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left.

And He will say to His sheep, "Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world."

"For I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me."

Then they will answer Him, saying, "Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink?"

"When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You?"

"Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?"

And the Lord Jesus will answer and say to them, "Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me."

And He will say to those who are not His people, "Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels."

"For I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink; I was a stranger and you did not take me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me."

Then they will answer Him, saying, "Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?"

And the Lord Jesus will answer them, saying, "Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did not do it to Me."

And they will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.

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The Lord Jesus will come in His glory.

He will come with all the angels.

He will sit on the throne of His glory.

Everyone will be gathered before Him.

He will separate the righteous from the wicked.

He will pronounce the sentence.

He will called the righteous 'the blessed of His Father' and the wicked 'You cursed'.

He will called the righteous to come and inherit the kingdom prepared for them from the foundation f the world.

He will command the wicked to depart from Him into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels.

He will talk about their good deeds and evil deeds.

Salvation is not a matter of words, but of faith and the surrendering of our life to God alone!

And we are to do all His biddings to all His people.

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The day is coming.

Shall we fall short and be found wanting?

Or will we be ready?