Why We Love Jesus

Preached at Riverview Baptist June 4, 2017 (798 Santa Fe Pike, Columbia, TN)

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Matthew 20:17-19 (KJV) And Jesus going up to Jerusalem took the twelve disciples apart in the way, and said unto them, 18 Behold, we go up to Jerusalem; and the Son of man shall be betrayed unto the chief priests and unto the scribes, and they shall condemn him to death, 19 And shall deliver him to the Gentiles to mock, and to scourge, and to crucify him: and the third day he shall rise again.

Mark 10:32-34 (KJV)32 And they were in the way going up to Jerusalem; and Jesus went before them: and they were amazed; and as they followed, they were afraid. And he took again the twelve, and began to tell them what things should happen unto him, 33 Saying, Behold, we go up to Jerusalem; and the Son of man shall be delivered unto the chief priests, and unto the scribes; and they shall condemn him to death, and shall deliver him to the Gentiles: 34 And they shall mock him, and shall scourge him, and shall spit upon him, and shall kill him: and the third day he shall rise again.

Luke 18:31-34 (KJV)31 Then he took unto him the twelve, and said unto them, Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all things that are written by the prophets concerning the Son of man shall be accomplished. 32 For he shall be delivered unto the Gentiles, and shall be mocked, and spitefully entreated, and spitted on: 33 And they shall scourge him, and put him to death: and the third day he shall rise again. 34 And they understood none of these things: and this saying was hid from them, neither knew they the things which were spoken.

Someone asked Gospel Singer Andre Crouch one time “Why do you love Jesus so much?”. Andre – who is today with the Lord – answered the question by writing a song called “If Heaven Was Never Promised To Me”. Some of the lyrics are as follows:

You ask me why, Why do you serve the Lord?

Is it just for Heaven’s gain?

Or to walk those mighty streets of gold?

Or to hear the angels sing?

Is it just to drink from the fountain?

That never shall run dry?

Or is it just to live ever, ever, and ever,

In that sweet, sweet old bye and bye?

But if Heaven never were promised to me,

Neither God’s promise to live eternally,

It’s been worth just having the Lord in my life!

Living in a world of darkness,

He brought me the light.

He’s been my closest Friend down through the years,

And everytime I cry He has dried all my tears,

It’s been worth just having the Lord in my life!

Living in a world of darkness,

He brought me the light.

What an amazing love Jesus has for His people. I do believe that there is a Heaven waiting for those who love Jesus. I do believe that Heaven will be a fantastic place, a place where

Revelation 21:3-4 (KJV) …. the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. 4 And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.

Heaven will be glorious, but Heaven is not why I love Jesus. I love Jesus because He loves me unconditionally. I love Jesus because He not only will dry my tears in Heaven, but He is with me now and has dried my tears now.

Look At The Love Of Jesus

As He leads His small band of followers to Jerusalem – there are only twelve now – where are the multitudes? The multitudes have been fed by Jesus. He fed 5000, then 4000. He has healed thousands upon thousands of people. The blind now see. Where are the blind people He healed? The deaf now hear? Where are these blessed people He has healed? Where are the lepers? Where are those who were demon possessed, but now are restored to health and family. Where are the parents of children Jesus has raised from the dead? Why aren’t the crippled that He has healed leaping and dancing around Him as He heads toward Jerusalem?

The story we read today is told not just by Matthew, but by Mark and Luke as well. Each shares a different perspective. Mark tells us:

Mark 10:32 (KJV) And they were in the way going up to Jerusalem; and Jesus went before them: and they were amazed; and as they followed, they were afraid.

As Jesus heads toward Jerusalem the twelve following Him were first amazed. They were amazed because Jesus was not frightened. They were amazed because they knew that Jesus was heading toward the stronghold of the Pharisees, Sadducees, and Chief Priests, and they knew that Jesus had upset these religious people. It amazed them that Jesus was going to Jerusalem. Only a brave person runs INTO a burning building, or runs TOWARD enemy fire. Jesus was not avoiding trouble, but heading toward it. The disciples knew this, and were afraid. They were afraid for themselves, and afraid for Jesus as well. But Jesus was not afraid. He was resolute. Jesus knew what He had to do. We are told:

Luke 9:51 (KJV)51 And it came to pass, when the time was come that he should be received up, he STEADFASTLY SET HIS FACE TO GO TO JERUSALEM,

Jesus knew what was coming. His actions were not those of a reckless person. Jesus knew that there was only one way that man could ever be right with God, and that way was through His bloody sacrifice. Jesus is going to Jerusalem as the “Lamb of God Who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). The Bible declares:

Romans 3:21-23 (KJV) But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; 22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: 23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

Every person is far from God. Sin stands as a black mark on all of God’s creation. We are not creatures of EVOLUTION, but of DEVOLUTION. Created to walk with God man walked away, and we all have followed.

We live in a day where no one wants to claim responsibility. A man can murder a man and be released in just a few years because it was his environment that caused the problem, his upbringing, his parents, an unequal society, or poverty. A politician loses an election but it is everybody’s fault but that politician. A child fails in school, let’s blame the school, not the child or the parent who would not make the child turn off the game system and study. It is always someone else who is at fault. Or is it? The Scripture declares:

Romans 5:12 (KJV) Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:

We all have sinned. There is no crowd around Jesus as He heads toward Jerusalem because we are all sinners. Jesus loved us so much that He headed toward Jerusalem knowing what was coming. He was to be:

Isaiah 53:3-6 (NKJV) …. despised and rejected by men, A Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised, and we did not esteem Him. 4 Surely He has borne our griefs And carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted. 5 But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed. 6 All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.

Jesus is going to Jerusalem to die for our sins. Jesus is going because the Father bid Him go. We are told in:

Luke 18:31-34 (KJV)31 Then he took unto him the twelve, and said unto them, Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all things that are written by the prophets concerning the Son of man shall be accomplished.

Throughout the Old Testament the Lord prophesied that the Messiah would come. Jesus would come according to prophecy. He is the one and only Messiah. Everything that Jesus did, He did according to the written Word of God. After Jesus was crucified and rose again He told those He walked with on the Emmaus Road:

Luke 24:25-27 (KJV) Then he said unto them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken: 26 Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory? 27 And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself.

People today say they believe in Jesus, but do not believe in the Bible. How foolish this is! You cannot believe in Jesus if you do not believe His Word. Over and over again Jesus declared “it is written”, and over and over again throughout His ministry Jesus. Jesus loved the Word of God, and as He headed toward Jerusalem it was to fulfill the Scripture.

Jesus Will Be Betrayed According To The Scripture

Matthew 20:17-18 (KJV) … Jesus going up to Jerusalem took the twelve disciples apart in the way, and said unto them, 18 Behold, we go up to Jerusalem; and the Son of man shall be BETRAYED…

Jesus is speaking to the “Twelve Disciples”, telling them what will happen to Him. The first thing Jesus says is that “the Son of Man shall be BETRAYED”. Think of this word “BETRAYED”. When an enemy attacks you it is expected, but when a friend hurts you it hurts the worst. Jesus would be betrayed. This was prophesied in the Scripture.

Psalm 41:9 (NKJV) Even my own familiar friend in whom I trusted, Who ate my bread, Has lifted up his heel against me.

One of the twelve – His closest disciples – would betray Jesus, turning Him over for death. What would Jesus’ betrayal cost?

Zechariah 11:12 (NKJV) … So they weighed out for my wages thirty pieces of silver.

Jesus was betrayed by Judas Iscariot for 30 pieces of silver, a pitiful price to betray someone by. We don’t know exactly how much this was, but 30 pieces of silver was what was commonly paid for a slave in Biblical times.

Jesus was sold like a slave by Iscariot!

But Judas was not the only betrayer. Though Judas would sell Jesus as a slave to the Jewish leaders, the other disciples would run away when Christ was captured. Jesus told His disciples:

Matthew 26:31-32 (KJV)… All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for IT IS WRITTEN, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock shall be scattered abroad. (a quote from Zechariah 13:7) 32 But after I am risen again, I will go before you into Galilee.

But Peter spoke up, saying:

Matthew 26:33 (KJV) …. Though all men shall be offended because of thee, yet will I never be offended.

Yet before the rooster crowed Peter would deny Jesus three times, even taking God’s name in vain (see Luke 22:54-62). We have all at times betrayed Jesus.

  • We betray Him when we do not do as He commands.
  • We betray Him when we follow the crowd or the world instead of Him.
  • We betray Him when we reject the Word of God that He so loved.
  • We betray Him when we turn away from Him.
  • We betray Him when we do not love as He loves.

Jesus knew that He would be betrayed. He knew of Iscariot, and Peter, and James, and John. He knew, but went anyway. Jesus said “Behold, WE go to Jerusalem” but knew that this WE would soon turn into just I. Jesus would suffer alone on Calvary.

Matthew 20:18 (KJV) Behold, we go up to Jerusalem; and the Son of man shall be betrayed unto the chief priests and unto the scribes, and they shall condemn him to death

The best defenders of Jesus should have been the Chief Priests and the Scribes. These people studied Scripture. They served in the Temple. They were supposed to stand between God and the people, representing the Messiah. Yet man made religion never brings a blessing to anyone. Man made religion caused the Great Crusades where untold thousands of people died in the name of a false Christ. Jesus never told His people to kill, but to love. He told us to buy a sword, but it was to be used defensively only. When Peter attacked Malchus, the High Priest’s slave, cutting off his ear, Jesus restored that man’s ear and told His disciples:

Matthew 26:52-56 (KJV) …. Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword. 53 Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels? 54 But how then shall the scriptures be fulfilled, that thus it must be? 55 In that same hour said Jesus to the multitudes, Are ye come out as against a thief with swords and staves for to take me? I sat daily with you teaching in the temple, and ye laid no hold on me. 56 But all this was done, that the scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled. Then all the disciples forsook him, and fled. (see also Luke 22:50-53)

Muhammad may have told his disciples to slay the infidels, and the Hindu gods may smile as unbelievers are beheaded. Religion does strange things to people. But Christ has never bid His disciples to kill or maim others, believers or not. We are to “love our neighbor as we love ourselves” (Mark 12:31) and, if saved by Grace, we are to “love one another as Christ has loved us” (John 13:34-35). The Child of God is not known by a steel sword but by the Sword of the Lord, the Word of God. The Child of the Kingdom does not murder with steel or a sharp tongue, but loves as Christ loved.

Matthew 20:18 (KJV) Behold, we go up to Jerusalem; and the Son of man shall be betrayed unto the chief priests and unto the scribes, and they shall condemn him to death

Religion could not kill Jesus, but religion turned Him over to the world to kill Him. That’s what kills Jesus today, those who claim to be Christian but have no mercy. Recently I read with interest the story of a young woman who sinned, and became pregnant because of that sin. The Christian school that she attended required she stand before the assembly and confess her sin. She did so, but afterward was bound from walking to receive her diploma. Sin is sin, and should not be taken lightly. But Beloved we are always reminded of the Words of the Apostle Who said:

Galatians 6:1-5 (KJV) Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted. 2 Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ. 3 For if a man think himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself. 4 But let every man prove his own work, and then shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another. 5 For every man shall bear his own burden.

There is Grace. Religion turns Jesus over to death. Religion sets Christ up to be mocked and minimized. God save us from religion. Jesus came to pay for our sins, and Jesus came to be the Lamb of God for us. It was prophesied of Christ that …

Psalms 40:6-8 (KJV) Sacrifice and offering thou didst not desire; mine ears hast thou opened: burnt offering and sin offering hast thou not required. 7 Then said I, Lo, I come: in the volume of the book it is written of me, 8 I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart.

Hebrews 10:9-10 (KJV) Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second. 10 By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.

No work of man can cover even the smallest of sins. Jesus Christ died for our sins. If that sinning child confesses that sin to God in Christ, the sin is covered, atonement is made. Jesus paid it all!

Jesus Was Delivered Up For Us

Matthew 20:19 (KJV) …And shall deliver him to the Gentiles to mock, and to scourge, and to crucify him:

Though religion delivered Jesus to the Gentiles, it was us who crucified Him. He was mocked. We are told in:

Mark 10:34 (KJV) And they shall mock him, and shall scourge him, and shall spit upon him, and shall kill him:

They blindfolded Jesus, and struck Him, and said “Prophesy, tell us who struck You”. They put a reed in His hand and a purple robe on Him, knelt and said “Hail, King of the Jews”. They took thorns and made a crown of it, then jammed this down over his head and into his brow. They jerk at His beard, pulling it out in tufts with bloody flesh as Isaiah foresaw:

Isaiah 50:6 (NKJV) I gave My back to those who struck Me, And My cheeks to those who plucked out the beard; I did not hide My face from shame and spitting.

But Jesus did not flinch. He did not turn away. The Bible says:

1 Peter 2:23-24 (KJV) Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously: 24 Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.

Jesus kept His eyes on the final prize. He went to that Cross to pay for our sins. Because of what Jesus did one day we shall see a Heaven where:

Revelation 7:9-10 (KJV)9 After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; 10 And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb.

Jesus Christ went to that Cross for us. When they cried out:

We have no King but Caesar (John 19:15)

Jesus did not flinch. When they shouted:

Crucify Him, Crucify Him (Luke 23:21)

Jesus did not complain. The nails and the beating were horrible, unimaginable. But it was when our sins were placed on Jesus that He cried out, as Prophecy declared:

My God, My God, Why hast Thou forsaken Me (Matthew 27:46; Psalm 22:1)

To paraphrase Jeremiah (9:1), “Oh that my head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night for my Jesus!” What a fantastic love He has for you and I. What a Savior. What a Redeemer!

But this is not all of it. Jesus said:

Matthew 20:19 And shall deliver him to the Gentiles to mock, and to scourge, and to crucify him: and the third day he shall rise again.

Jesus rose again. He loved me, and gave Himself for me (Galatians 2:20) on that Cross, and the third day He rose again. His Blood was shed to make an everlasting Covenant before God (see Hebrews 13:20). He rose again according to the Scripture. Jesus said:

Matthew 12:40 (KJV) For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.

Because He lives, I will live. As God promised in Malachi 4:2 But for you who fear My Name, the Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in His wings …” Praise Him! Praise Him! Do you know Him? Do you know my Jesus?

About bibleteacherorg

A searching Pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. Daily I pray for the Church. Most of what the world sees today is not the Church, but clubs pretending to be the Church. God is calling to Himself a people willing to be righteous, not self righteous, serving not served. I am called to pastor God's people, those who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. Only God is able to change the world, and we must follow His Christ. He is able! Praise His Name! Come quickly Lord Jesus!
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