Temple Baptist Church - 3-28-2021
Matthew 27:1-2; 11-26
A. As we approach Resurrection Sunday, our thoughts need to go to the place called Calvary. Almighty Jehovah God became flesh and dwelt among us. There at Calvary, the Son of God suffered and died for the sins of the world.
1. The Purpose of the Cross – “When He was on the cross, I was on His mind!
Romans 5:6-8 For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. (7) For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. (8) But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
Christ chose to die for the sins of the world: every man or woman who ever lived. The Scripture is plain at this point. Calvinism or Reformed Theology is a damnable heresy and needs to be rejected entirely.
2. The Price of the Cross – Explained in one verse, Mark 15:34:
“And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?
Though Jesus suffered as no man has ever suffered, the greatest suffering was that, for the first time in eternity past, we see the Godhead divided because He became sin for us.
3. The Pleasing of the Cross – The satisfaction of God the Father in sin’s ultimate payment!
Isaiah 53:10 Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt 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.
Hebrews 9:12 Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.
4. The Pardon of the Cross – Though we who have come to Christ through the Gospel, we are still just sinners saved by grace! Through the Cross of Christ, we are washed whiter than snow! When God the Father sees us, He sees us through the blood that was shed and applied!
5. The Praise of the Cross – The Apostle Paul said it all in Galatians 6:14:
“But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world.”
Hallelujah, What a Saviour!
B. This morning, our text asks the question. Mankind’s personal answer to this question settles his/her individual eternity! I would venture to say that this is the most important question ever asked.
Matthew 27:22a: “Pilate saith unto them, What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ?”
1. More Important Than “What will I do for a living?”
2. More Important Than “Who will I marry?”
3. More Important Than “Where will I live?”
4. This is the only question that deals with “HOW WILL I DIE?”
C. It is a question that DEMANDS a response from all! Everyone who hears the gospel makes one of the three following responses.
1. The Damnable Response of Rejection. For the most part, the world wants nothing to do with Christ! I would like us to notice 3 groups of people who responded to this question by rejecting Christ.
a. The Religious Crowd Rejected Christ – Mark 15:10 For he knew that the chief priests had delivered him for envy. (The priests were the instigators. They were the religious people of that day. They studied the Scriptures and yet rejected the One who died for them. Christ disrupted their religious system!)
b. The Macho Crowd (Soldiers) Rejected Christ – Matthew 27:27-31 Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the common hall, and gathered unto him the whole band of soldiers. And they stripped him, and put on him a scarlet robe. And when they had platted a crown of thorns, they put it upon his head, and a reed in his right hand: and they bowed the knee before him, and mocked him, saying, Hail, King of the Jews! And they spit upon him, and took the reed, and smote him on the head. And after that they had mocked him, they took the robe off from him, and put his own raiment on him, and led him away to crucify him.
They simply did what the world told them to do! The Chief Priests were the instigators. The soldiers carried out their duties.
John 19:2-3 And the soldiers platted a crown of thorns, and put it on his head, and they put on him a purple robe, And said, Hail, King of the Jews! and they smote him with their hands.
c. The Wicked Crowd Rejected Christ – Matthew 27:22-25 Pilate saith unto them, What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ? They all say unto him, Let him be crucified. And the governor said, Why, what evil hath he done? But they cried out the more, saying, Let him be crucified. When Pilate saw that he could prevail nothing, but that rather a tumult was made, he took water, and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, I am innocent of the blood of this just person: see ye to it. Then answered all the people, and said, His blood be on us, and on our children.
If our response to Christ this morning is that of rejecting Christ, we are no better than the soldiers who drove the nails into His hands, or the crowd who cried out, "Crucify Him, Crucify Him!"
2. The Unacceptable Response of Neutrality Found In Pilate. Most people in the Bible Belt have heard the gospel and know who Christ is but make no decision at all concerning Christ! (Pilate illustrates this response.) We will discover that a response of neutrality is in essence a response of rejection.
a. Pilate was a Coward – Mark 15:15 And so Pilate, willing to content the people, released Barabbas unto them, and delivered Jesus, when he had scourged him, to be crucified. (What will the people think of me?)
b. Pilate was a Compromiser – John 19:12-13 And from thenceforth Pilate sought to release him: but the Jews cried out, saying, If thou let this man go, thou art not Caesar’s friend: whosoever maketh himself a king speaketh against Caesar. When Pilate therefore heard that saying, he brought Jesus forth, and sat down in the judgment seat in a place that is called the Pavement, but in the Hebrew, Gabbatha.
c. Pilate was Condemned – Matthew 27:24 Matthew 27:24 When Pilate saw that he could prevail nothing, but that rather a tumult was made, he took water, and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, I am innocent of the blood of this just person: see ye to it.
I have often said that there is no benign state of neutrality with God!
3. The Wonderful Response of Acceptance. I am thankful that Scripture shows us some people who were courageous and accepted Christ. I thank God every day for my salvation! I not only have heard about Christ, know who Christ is, but have placed my faith in Christ!
a. The Thief on the Cross – Luke 23:42-43 And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. (43) And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.
b. Joseph of Arimathea – Matthew 27:57-60 When the even was come, there came a rich man of Arimathaea, named Joseph, who also himself was Jesus’ disciple: He went to Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus. Then Pilate commanded the body to be delivered. And when Joseph had taken the body, he wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, And laid it in his own new tomb, which he had hewn out in the rock: and he rolled a great stone to the door of the sepulchre, and departed.
Though he was saved earlier, he made public his profession of faith in Jesus Christ as Lord.
c. The Roman Centurion – Mark 15:39 And when the centurion, which stood over against him, saw that he so cried out, and gave up the ghost, he said, Truly this man was the Son of God.
He was the highest-ranking soldier at the crucifixion. It was a rejection of Caesar’s divinity and could have cost him both his job and his life.
Conclusion: Albert B. Simpson wrote a poem, which has been put to music about this question. Listen to the words:
Jesus is standing in Pilate’s hall,
friendless, forsaken, betrayed by all;
hearken! what meaneth the sudden call?
What will you do with Jesus?
What will you do with Jesus?
neutral you cannot be;
some day your heart will be asking,
"What will he do with me?"
Jesus is standing on trial still,
you can be false to him if you will,
you can be faithful through good or ill:
what will you do with Jesus? Refrain
Will you evade him as Pilate tried?
Or will you choose him, whate’er betide?
Vainly you struggle from him to hide:
what will you do with Jesus? Refrain
Will you, like Peter, your Lord deny?
Or will you scorn from His foes to fly,
daring for Jesus to live or die?
What will you do with Jesus? Refrain
"Jesus, I give thee my heart today!
Jesus, I’ll follow thee all the way,
gladly obeying thee!" will you say:
"this I will do with Jesus!" Refrain
a. What will you do with Jesus this morning? You must either crucify Him or crown Him. Ask Him to come into your life as Savior, your Lord and King.
b. How do you respond to His call?