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Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Sermon 03282012 Wednesday of Lent 5

May the words of my mouth and the meditations of our hearts be pleasing in Your sight, O Lord, our Rock and our Redeemer.  AMEN.

Let us pray, Lord Jesus Christ, You were led to be crucified between two thieves on Golgotha.  You had led a sinless life, but for our iniquities You suffered and died to set us free from sin, death and the devil.  May we understand Your sacrifice fulfilled the plan of salvation and freed we Your sinful children from the wickedness of the devil.  For You chose death in order to free all of us saints gathered here at Emmanuel from our sins.  AMEN.

The prophet Ezekiel provides for us a clear understanding how we should approach our meditation this evening.  With the understanding that the book of Ezekiel was “to explain why God’s glory departed from Israel and how His glory would return”, Ezekiel in prophecy, but also truth says that God “does not have pleasure in the death of the wicked”.  Yet tonight our text from Isaiah clearly says that Jesus Christ was among the wicked.

Hear from Isaiah how Jesus Christ, our suffering servant is numbered among the wicked.

9 His grave was assigned with wicked men, Yet He was with a rich man in His death, Because He had done no violence, Nor was there any deceit in His mouth.

It is clear that Jesus Christ was crucified with the wicked.  Sentences of death for criminals was more common in Biblical times and the two thiefs on the cross on Jesus right and left had apparently been sentenced for their crimes.  They were wicked men.  And Jesus Christ though innocent of any sin, became sin and took our wickedness upon Himself and suffered for each of us.  For Jesus “had done no violence” that deserved death, Jesus Christ had not broken any law, but chose to take upon Himself our sin and be numbered among the wicked.

For Jesus Christ had done no sin in the eyes of man nor in the eyes of God.  Being completely sinless, Jesus Christ innocence was irrefutable.  Jesus Christ had not broken any of the 10 Commandments that Moses had brought down from God.  Jesus Christ intent was to preach and proclaim the ultimate fulfillment of the law of God.  As Ezekiel had told, God’s Glory would be revealed through His innocent death on the Cross of Calvary for the sins, not of Israel alone, but for the entirety of mankind of all time and all place.  Jesus Christ would bear the burden of mankind on the Cross and pay the full ransom of all by His death on Calvary by His perfect life of committing no sin.

And Jesus suffered on the Cross of Calvary for you and for me.  He bled innocent blood from the wounds of His hands and feet, side and back for you and for me.  Jesus Christ endured the shame of being cast among the wicked, jeered by the crowds, spit upon as He carried His Cross for you and for me.  Jesus Christ could have called down legions of angels to protect Him, but in humility and a life of grace suffered a painful death, for you and for me.

For this was the plan of salvation complete in the simple, yet profound act of the Word of God incarnate in the flesh of Jesus Christ.  Jesus Christ taken on this journey between rulers  and the Cross kept silent and bore our grief’s and cares, though He was marred, despised, forsaken and afflicted was questioned, but endured scourging, bruising, piercing and having our iniquity and sin fall upon Him.  But in true servant fashion, Jesus did not come into the world to condemn the world, but by being cast among the wicked, saved us from our wickedness and through His death on the Cross of Calvary for the entire world, offers all of us saints gathered here at Emmanuel eternal life.  AMEN.
//trial script