Classic Christianity – Book of John Part 82 (10-08-19)
Let us join Bob now as he gets started with today’s lesson. Let us pick up where we left off.
28 Later, knowing that everything had now been finished, and so that Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, “I am thirsty.” 29 A jar of wine vinegar was there, so they soaked a sponge in it, put the sponge on a stalk of the hyssop plant, and lifted it to Jesus’ lips. 30 When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
Jesus said, “Father, into your hands I commit my Spirit”. The body of Jesus died and the Spirit of Jesus lived on. Jesus said, “It is finished”. What did he mean by, “It is finished.” When you understand what Jesus came to do, to give life to us, that he saw us in our condition of spiritual death as a result of Adam’s sin, then you will come to understand what he meant. We quite frankly had nothing to do with our spiritual death. We were born dead spiritually as the result of the sin of Adam. When Adam died, we all died.
God saw that Satan had messed up his creation. He had developed a plan, with the Godhead; the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. The Godhead developed a plan for redemption. We are going to do a plan to bring our people that I created back to life. The life I am going to give them is a life that cannot be destroyed because if Adam through his sin died and Jesus, when he took upon our sins, died, then the only thing that can cause us to die is sin. I have got to deal with what caused sin once and for all in order to give my people a life called eternal life. The plan was developed. I am going to give them eternal life. In order to do that sin has to be taken away from the eyes of God. A lot of people will come down and confuse that, that Jesus took away our sins so that we cannot sin anymore. You evidently left the world if you believed that. Do you all believe that or is that a statement you are wondering about? Do any of you believe we still sin? Do all of us believe that? If you don’t, I will introduce your husband or your wife.
He took away sins from the eyes of God. In atonement sin was covered from the eyes of man until the next time. But Jesus did something far greater than covering sin. That is what atonement accomplished. He did something far greater than that. He took away the sin from the eyes of God. God looked down on the sacrifice of Christ Jesus and saw that the blood of Jesus was of such consequence that it was able to take away the sins of the entire world from His eyes. The entire world! He said “propitiation” has taken place, meaning I am totally satisfied. There is nothing else to be done that the blood of My Son was of such value that it was able to take away the sins of the world from My eyes.
1 John 2:2
2 And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.
That is precisely why Jesus said that when he comes back, and he is coming back, and that he is coming back to the place he left, the mount of olives (Zechariah 14:1-4). Just as you have seen me depart, you will see me return to this very spot. When I come back, I am not coming back to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for me (Hebrews 9:28). The reason he is not coming back to bear sin is because he has already done that. He is not going to do that again. There is nothing else to do.
1 A day of the Lord is coming, Jerusalem, when your possessions will be plundered and divided up within your very walls.
2 I will gather all the nations to Jerusalem to fight against it; the city will be captured, the houses ransacked, and the women raped. Half of the city will go into exile, but the rest of the people will not be taken from the city. 3 Then the Lord will go out and fight against those nations, as he fights on a day of battle. 4 On that day his feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, east of Jerusalem, and the Mount of Olives will be split in two from east to west, forming a great valley, with half of the mountain moving north and half moving south.
28 so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.
When you cry out, “It is finished”, then there is nothing else to do. It is done. It is finished. It is accomplished. It is paid in full. That is precisely what Jesus had to do at the cross. When he cried out, “it is finished”, I wonder some times what people are thinking when they say literally to Jesus, “No, you didn’t finish it. There is still sin I need to get forgiven. There is still sin. I am not forgiven. We do that and I say, “I hope God forgives me. I hope God can forgive me for that.” How many of you have said that? What are we doing when we say that?
Not many of you would say that today when you understand the completeness of the cross. But at times past we have said that, “Please forgive me. I promise I will not do it again.“ The next day, you do it again. Then you come to the point and say, “God is sick in his stomach at me. He is probably up there taking Pepto Bismal every day looking at what I am doing.” It is because we have not finalized in our mind that it is finished, that sins in the eyes of God is gone.
He is dealing with humanity on the basis of only one thing. What did you do with the Jesus that I sent to the earth to take away your sins? What did you do with it? Did you ignore him? Did you, in essence, call him a liar when he said it is finished? Are you continuing in your sacrificial systems in order to get yourself forgiven? Are you continuing to go to the confession booth to get the priest to forgive you? Are you continually walking around begging God to forgive you when God has said he already said so? And you call that faith? That is not faith. That is presumption. Without faith, it is impossible to please God. Yet people walk around saying, “I am so pleasing to God because I keep short accounts with God. Every sin I commit I confess that immediately.“ Then they think they are walking by faith. That is not faith. That is faith in you and what you are doing. Quite frankly that is faith in your memory because whst if you forgot one. So we are not walking by faith when we deny what Jesus came to do. Jesus came to take away the cause of death, and the cause of death is sin, and he took away the sins of the entire world from the eyes of God.
That is precisely why it says that there is now no condemnation awaiting you who belong to Christ Jesus. Do you believe that? There is no condemnation! What is the condemnation of God? Death. God does not mess around with paddling s. People think, “God is going to take you to the woodshed”. How many of you have ever been to the woodshed? People think, “God is going to get you. God is going to make you sick. God is going to break you. God is going to do all these things if you keep on sinning.” Is that true? No, that is not true. We deserve that. If I got what I deserved from God, I would go to hell. It is not the case of if I did something but it is the case of what God did for me in spite of me. We have this whole thing where God came to free us from the condemnation of God. There is no condemnation. There is no more death for those of you who are in Christ Jesus. Why? The law of the Spirit of life has set you free from the law of sin and death. You have crossed over from the law of sin and death which you were under as a lost person and crossed over into a new realm altogether called the realm of life. The law of the Spirit of life has saved you from the law of sin and death. You are a free man and a free woman. Is that good news?
Now God had to do that and that is precisely why he cried out from the cross, “It is finished“. That aspect of taking away the sins of the world from the eyes of God is done. Where was it done? At the cross. Now for that to happen it happened on the day of preparation on the Jewish holiday. The day of preparation was the day the Jewish people would clean out all of the leaven in their homes. Even if there was a smell of leaven from a past cooking it had to be cleaned out of there on the day of preparation. Spring house cleaning. You cleaned out all of the leaven. It is a picture of taking away the sins of the world. Leaven is referred to as sin. It was a picture on a holiday of taking all leaven out of your house. Jesus died to take away all sins away from you from the eyes of God.
That day of preparation was on a Thursday. We talked about that last week. The next day is referred to as a special Sabbath. A special Sabbath indicates there were many Sabbaths in the Old Testament. We always think of the Sabbath as just the Friday or Saturday or the Saturday. But that was the Sabbath. But there were special Sabbaths, the day of the preparation, and the next day, called the special Sabbath, which was the first day of the feast of unleavened bread, celebrating that fact. You had his death on preparation, the day of preparation.
Now, what is the cross? Is the cross salvation? Or is the cross preparation for salvation? It is preparation. Is it not strange that he did that on the day of preparation. It is what prepares you for salvation. The cross is preparatory, necessary for salvation. What is salvation? Being raised from the dead is salvation. The day that you and I are raised from the dead, we are saved from the dead. In order to do that, preparation had to take place, and the preparation was taking away the cause of death, which is what the cross accomplished, on the day of preparation. He died on Thursday. The next day was a special Sabbath, the first day of the feast of unleavened bread. The next day was the Sabbath. All of those things are discussed in the scriptures.
Jesus did not die of Friday. He died on Thursday. Just as Jonah was in the belly of the whale for three days and three nights so too was the Son of God in the heart of the earth for three days and three nights.
40 For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of a huge fish, so the Son of Man will be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.
Now it says in verse 31. It was the day of preparation. The next day was to be the special Sabbath. That is what we just talked about. Preparation on Thursday, Special Sabbath on Friday, the first day of the feast of unleavened bread. Then the next day, because the Jews did not want to leave the body on the Sabbath, the regular Sabbath day, they asked Pilate to have his legs broken.
31 Now it was the day of Preparation, and the next day was to be a special Sabbath. Because the Jewish leaders did not want the bodies left on the crosses during the Sabbath, they asked Pilate to have the legs broken and the bodies taken down. 32 The soldiers therefore came and broke the legs of the first man who had been crucified with Jesus, and then those of the other. 33 But when they came to Jesus and found that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. 34 Instead, one of the soldiers pierced Jesus’ side with a spear, bringing a sudden flow of blood and water. 35 The man [John] who saw it has given testimony, and his testimony is true. He knows that he tells the truth, and he testifies so that you also may believe. 36 These things happened so that the scripture would be fulfilled: “Not one of his bones will be broken,”[c] 37 and, as another scripture says, “They will look on the one they have pierced.”[d]
We do not understand the fear that these people had of the Jewish leadership. They came from Galilee, which was a seed bed for resurrection. It was a place where all kinds of opposition to orthodoxy was bred in that part of the country. That did not make him real popular. He also came and was not a real friend of the Pharisees because the Pharisees were the ones whose job was to keep the law and make sure you kept the law and hoped you never found out that I do not keep the law. They were the law keepers. They felt the purpose of the Jew on the face of the earth was to preserve the law. That was their purpose. That was the only reason they were there, to preserve the law of Moses, diligently. Jesus came up and said to them, “you are a white-washed sepulchre because you cannot keep the law and yet you command others to do so”.
27 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean.”
Paul wrote that no man will ever be declared righteous in the sight of God through obedience to the law. So if you are trying to obtain righteousness in the sight of God, God already told you that you can never do that. No man will ever be declared justified in the sight of God through obedience to the law. You cannot be justified by the law. You cannot be declared righteous by the law. If the law could bring life, then Christ died for nothing. So the law could not give you life.
What was the purpose of the law? To show you are a sinner so you may turn to Christ for salvation. If you do not see you are a sinner, what does the cross mean to you? If you do not need total forgiveness, what benefit is the cross? If I think that I am 50% okay then I only need a 50% Jesus. Just think maybe one of these days you can get so good that you think you do not need him at all? The law can do nothing for you except to show you what it came to do, and that is to show you that you are a sinner. How come? Jesus was headed to a cross, to do what? Die for sinners. He did not need to come to die for the righteous, if you thought you were, but to die for sinners.
Jesus had to get under the skin of people. People can say, “I do not commit adultery.” He says look, “If you look lustfully at a girl, you have already committed adultery in your heart. God looks inside. That is why he says, “You white washed tomb. You may look good on the outside but on the inside you are dirty. The law says do not kill. But I say, “if you get angry at somebody, you have already committed murder in your heart.” He got under our skin.
That made the Pharisees angry for they wanted to be patted on the head for how well they kept the exterior of the law. Jesus did not do that. He said to them, “You are hypocrites”. He became an enemy of the Pharisees because of his attitude towards their attitude toward the law.
He also was not very popular with the priests, whose job was to keep the temple going, to be sure that all the things done in the temple are done properly, including the sacrificial system. He told them, the chief priests, who were part of the Sadducee s. You had the Pharisees and the Sadducee s. To those chief priests, he told them to tear down that temple and “I will build it again in three days”. It is like he was saying, “That is how much I think about it”. The sacrificial system will be done. There will be no need for it.
So he became an enemy of the chief priests, the Sadducee s because of his attitude toward the temple. He became an enemy of the Pharisees because of his attitude toward the law. So he was not very popular to anybody.
These people have unbelievable control over the populace. So they were fearful. Just like Nicodemus had to go to Jesus at night. He said to Jesus, “I know you came from God. No one can do the miracles you do unless God was with you”. Jesus looked into the eyes of Nicodemus and told him he must be born again. “You were born physically but now you have to be born spiritually. First came the natural, that is physical birth, then came the spiritual, that is spiritual birth. You were never alive spiritually before you were alive physically.
5 Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless they are born of water and the Spirit. 6 Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. 7 You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You must be born again.’
There are some Johnny come lately that tell you are floating around somewhere in spirit and needed a body to live in, but that is nonsense according to the word of God. You have to be born first physically. That is what Jesus said, unless you are born of the water and the Spirit. Some people come along and say that is baptism. Come on, how can you be born of baptism. You are born in a sac of water. He explains that yet people come up with all these crazy ideas of what that means but Jesus explains that clearly. That is flesh is flesh. You have been born in your mother’s womb in a sac of water. That is called flesh. Now you have to be born of the Spirit. You have to have a natural birth and then you have to have a spiritual birth. The natural birth must come first and then the spiritual birth.
They were afraid of these things. Nicodemus, a Jew is doing all these things, and Jesus has to tell him he has to be born again. You mean all my deeds are not going to get me to heaven? No. Remember the passage that the Gentile who did not pursue righteousness have obtained it yet we who have followed the law have not? Yes, you got it. Why? Because you pursued it not by faith but by works. You are not getting in any place by your works. God is not impressed with your works. God is not sitting in heaven saying, “Did you see all those people at the seminar?” “Do you see how many radio stations I own?” “Do you know I have a church with 20,000 members?” He said, “big deal”. I am not interested in your works. I am interested in your heart. If you can speak in tongues of men and angels and do not have love, then you do not have anything. If you allow your body to be burned at the stake, but you do not have love, it does not have any meaning to it at all. I am not looking at the outward. I am looking at the inward. But the Jews were looking at the outward. They were fearful.
30 What then shall we say? That the Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, have obtained it, a righteousness that is by faith; 31 but the people of Israel, who pursued the law as the way of righteousness, have not attained their goal. 32 Why not? Because they pursued it not by faith but as if it were by works. They stumbled over the stumbling stone. 33 As it is written:
“See, I lay in Zion a stone that causes people to stumble
and a rock that makes them fall,
and the one who believes in him will never be put to shame.”[Isaiah 8:14; 28:16]
38 Later, Joseph of Arimathea asked Pilate for the body of Jesus. Now Joseph was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly because he feared the Jewish leaders. With Pilate’s permission, he came and took the body away.
39 He was accompanied by Nicodemus, the man who earlier had visited Jesus at night. Nicodemus brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about seventy-five pounds.[e] 40 Taking Jesus’ body, the two of them wrapped it, with the spices, in strips of linen. This was in accordance with Jewish burial customs.
He was wrapped in 75 pounds of material. That would be a little hard to get out of.
41 At the place where Jesus was crucified, there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb, in which no one had ever been laid. 42 Because it was the Jewish day of Preparation and since the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.
To those of you who have gone to Israel, you will see that garden. There is no question in my mind as to where that is. He was crucified outside the city in a place called Golgotha. A big stone is there. You see the eye sockets and the nose, just like a skull. Right besides that is the garden of Gethsemane. That is where the tomb is. You have water all around it.
1 Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance.
If you ever see the way those stones were. They were huge. They were rolled down into a hole. To get them out of there, it would take the strength of a number of men to do so.
2 So she came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put him!”
Her first thought was someone stole the Lord.
3 So Peter and the other disciple started for the tomb. 4 Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. 5 He bent over and looked in at the strips of linen lying there but did not go in. 6 Then Simon Peter came along behind him and went straight into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, 7 as well as the cloth that had been wrapped around Jesus’ head.
Now the 75 pounds of material was in this wrapping. In three days, it would harden. I believe it was there as if someone was in it, but no one was in it.