We continually stress the problem of mankind. Man has three basic problems to deal with.
SIN -- We have sinned against the God of heaven; sin that man has no way to remove on his own merit.
Christ has been shown as the answer in his sacrifice for us. (I John 2:2)
DEATH -- Although life has been prolonged by science and medicine, death is still sure to come. But Christ by his resurrection has overcome this problem for us. (I Corinthians 15)
LIFE -- Man's problem with living the right kind of life after becoming a Christian is something that he cannot do on his own. But again Christ has done something we cannot do. He has given us strength to carry on and He is with the Father to plead our case when we fall. (I John 2:1)
You are given a choice to make concerning service to God. This choice will be made from your heart.
Luke 8:4-15 - parable of soils (4 kinds of hearts)
Way side - (heard and did not believe)
Rocky soil - (did not last)
Thorny soil - (choked out)
GOOD soil - (heard and obeyed)
Today, let's notice four kinds of people that are at the foot of the cross when our Lord Jesus was crucified. Pretend that "you are there" and challenge yourself to see where you stand.
Roman Soldiers -- (Matthew 27:27-36)
They made a mockery of Jesus - (v. 27-29)
Crown of thorns.
Reed in his right hand.
Kneeled and mocked, "Hail, King of the Jews"
They degraded him - (v. 30)
Spat on him.
Smote him with the reed.
They were unconcerned and disinterested - (v. 35-36)
Sat below the cross and cast lots for Jesus' garments (35).
Sat and watched our Lord die (36). (To them it was just another crucifixion)
NOTE: Jesus' compassion on them in Luke 23:34 - "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do." (speaking of the Roman soldiers)
The Gawkers - (v. 39-40) -- those who come to public executions to jeer and ridicule.
"Wagging heads" -- 'I told you so' type of attitude.
"Big talk - no action" -- "Do something now"
They heard Jesus speak but didn't have ears to hear.
They only thought of this life.
"Got what you deserved" attitude without knowing the FACTS.
Prove yourself, work a sign.
Three days and they would have a sign.
These are unlike the Roman soldiers, they should have known better; Jesus had presented enough PROOF.
Religious Leaders - (v. 41-43)
Acted like the rest -- If anyone should have been prepared to accept the Messiah, it should have been them.
They taunted him with his own claims.
God's prophets of old warned against corruption like this among the religious leaders.
We have the same thing today.
Deny much of the PLAIN Bible truth.
Seek salvation on their own terms.
"Let him come down from the cross and we will believe on him" -- ("Do what WE want and we will believe")
NOTE: there is not a word of compassion for these in the text. (They HAD NO EXCUSE)
They should recognize Jesus' cry - (v. 45-47)
Psalm 22:1-21 --- read Matthew 27:27 on while I read the Psalm.
There was one other group there -- two thieves (Read Luke 23:39-43)
We all deserve to die (Romans 3:23, Romans 6:23)
Do like the thief did -- admit you are a sinner, that you deserve to die -- that Jesus is the only hope -- confess him to be the Son of God -- be crucified with Jesus (die to sin).
Colossians 2:12 -- operation of God.
Who will you be like?
Roman Soldier who mocked.
Gawkers who loved to see someone killed.
Hypocritical religious leaders who didn't believe.