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Famous Last Words

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ME:

Talk about the Easter season/New series
Speak about Christian identity/To be Holy/Alpha
How i deal with people who have hurt me.
Board issue.

WE:

It’s hard to forgive.
C.S. Lewis once said, “Everyone says forgiveness is a lovely idea until they have something to forgive.”
There are some of you here are thinking pastor you don’t know what I’ve been through. Someone has abandoned, abused or ruined your life. They’ve cheated on you, divorced you. You have a legitimate complaint. Right now, as you sit, you still bear the scars and consequences of that injustice. Some of you might be experiencing right now. I’ll never know or understand.
But somebody does. Somebody knows the level of injustice you’ve felt. Somebody else still bears the scars of the consequence of that injustice. Jesus.
Jesus felt what you felt

GOD: Walk through the Text

Luke 23:
Luke 23:26–34 ESV
And as they led him away, they seized one Simon of Cyrene, who was coming in from the country, and laid on him the cross, to carry it behind Jesus. And there followed him a great multitude of the people and of women who were mourning and lamenting for him. But turning to them Jesus said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. For behold, the days are coming when they will say, ‘Blessed are the barren and the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never nursed!’ Then they will begin to say to the mountains, ‘Fall on us,’ and to the hills, ‘Cover us.’ For if they do these things when the wood is green, what will happen when it is dry?” Two others, who were criminals, were led away to be put to death with him. And when they came to the place that is called The Skull, there they crucified him, and the criminals, one on his right and one on his left. And Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” And they cast lots to divide his garments.
Luke 23:26–33 NLT
As they led Jesus away, a man named Simon, who was from Cyrene, happened to be coming in from the countryside. The soldiers seized him and put the cross on him and made him carry it behind Jesus. A large crowd trailed behind, including many grief-stricken women. But Jesus turned and said to them, “Daughters of Jerusalem, don’t weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. For the days are coming when they will say, ‘Fortunate indeed are the women who are childless, the wombs that have not borne a child and the breasts that have never nursed.’ People will beg the mountains, ‘Fall on us,’ and plead with the hills, ‘Bury us.’ For if these things are done when the tree is green, what will happen when it is dry?” Two others, both criminals, were led out to be executed with him. When they came to a place called The Skull, they nailed him to the cross. And the criminals were also crucified—one on his right and one on his left.
Luke 23:34 NLT
Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing.” And the soldiers gambled for his clothes by throwing dice.
Luke 23:
Luke 23:34 NLT
Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing.” And the soldiers gambled for his clothes by throwing dice.
It’s a prayer
Luke 32:34
What is Jesus doing?
He is praying!
The importance of praying- he broke the silence
Praying to the Father.
What is He praying?
He praying for the Forgiveness for others.
it would be understandable if he was praying for himself.
We could understand if He was praying, “Father, they nailed me to a piece of wood. I came to save them and now they’re trying to kill me! Father, strike them dead and let’s start all over.” That would be understandable, but very unlike Jesus. Or maybe, “Father, I know I have to endure the cross for the salvation of your people, but it’s so difficult and painful, so please help me to endure it.” That would be a really understandable prayer. But He doesn’t pray that either.
We could understand if He was praying, “Father, they nailed me to a piece of wood. I came to save them and now they’re trying to kill me! Father, strike them dead and let’s start all over.” That would be understandable, but very unlike Jesus. Or maybe, “Father, I know I have to endure the cross for the salvation of your people, but it’s so difficult and painful, so please help me to endure it.” That would be a really understandable prayer. But He doesn’t pray that either.
During the time when it would be understandable and expected for even Jesus to be self-focused, He was being utterly others-focused. His focus was on God and those who were killing Him. He said, “Father, forgive them.”
During the time when it would be understandable and expected for even Jesus to be self-focused, He was being utterly others-focused. His focus was on God and those who were killing Him. He said, “Father, forgive them.”
- Every other time Jesus went to forgive during His ministry He said, “Your sins are forgiven.” But as He was hanging on the cross, He didn’t simply say that. Instead He asked and prayed, “Father, will you forgive them?” Why?
Through this we see Jesus’ humility. The first and foremost wrong He had in mind wasn’t the wrong being committed against Him, but the wrong committed against God. Jesus was showing us how we ought to deal with being wronged and sinned against.
Through this we see Jesus’ humility and divine condescension. The first and foremost wrong He had in mind wasn’t the wrong being committed against Him, but the wrong committed against God. Jesus was showing us how we ought to deal with being wronged and sinned against.
Every other time Jesus went to forgive during His ministry He said, “Your sins are forgiven.” But as He was hanging on the cross, He didn’t simply say that. Instead He asked and prayed, “Father, will you forgive them?” Why?
When we sin, we sin against God.
Psalm 51:4 NLT
Against you, and you alone, have I sinned; I have done what is evil in your sight. You will be proved right in what you say, and your judgment against me is just.
Our view of God’s holiness and righteousness must be such that we realize the wrong committed is not against us, but against God.
- When someone comes to you and confesses they’ve lied to you, they’ve hurt and betrayed you. How do you respond?
When someone comes to you and confesses they’ve lied to you, they’ve hurt and betrayed you. How do you respond?
Do you first and foremost have such a view of your own righteousness that you say, “How dare you do that to me! How could you hurt me like this?” or do you have such a view of God’s holiness and righteousness that you become broken over the fact that the person has wronged God?
If anybody could have been rightly offended by a wrong done against Him, it was Jesus. Yet, He first and foremost cared about the restoration between the sinner and the Father. After all, that’s why He came.
Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (ESV)
That is the mission Jesus has called us to.
We don’t need to pray how the person has wronged us and ask for the strength to forgive them. First and foremost, we need to pray how the person has hurt and sinned against God and ask Him to forgive them.
If God, in His infinite holiness can forgive, how much more should we? If God would freely offer forgiveness with arms stretched out, with an embrace, not reluctance, how much more should we? This isn’t just the way God forgives other people, but also how He forgives us.
Our theme verse in “Be Holy for I am Holy!
You forgive because you’ve been forgiven.
Remember, to the depth and extent we see and feel our being forgiven, we’ll be able to forgive.
Who is He praying for?
Jesus showed us what inclusion looked like.
It wasn’t offered to those who were repenting, confessing and sorry for their sins.
It wasn’t offered to those who were repenting, confessing and sorry for their sins.
Romans 5:6–8 NLT
When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners. Now, most people would not be willing to die for an upright person, though someone might perhaps be willing to die for a person who is especially good. But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.
It’s not our confession and repentance that births God’s mercy, but it’s God mercy that births our confession and repentance. God acts first. We act second. It’s not that we first loved God. He first loved us.
When we don’t understand this and keep this in the forefront of our lives, two things usually happen:
A legalistic spirit leads to being ungenerous, harsh, overly sensitive to criticism, deeply insecure, and jealous of others, because our “sense of personal identity and worth has become entwined with performance and its recognition rather than being rooted and grounded in Christ and his [un]merited grace.”- Explain
A legalistic spirit leads to being ungenerous, harsh, overly sensitive to criticism, deeply insecure, and jealous of others, because our “sense of personal identity and worth has become entwined with performance and its recognition rather than being rooted and grounded in Christ and his [un]merited grace.”
Antinomianism too is more than just the formal belief that “I don’t have to obey God’s law.” It is the thought that since God loves me regardless of my record, he doesn’t mind how morally or immorally I live. It’s the attitude that “God so accepts me as I am; he only wants me to be myself.”- Explain
Antinomianism too is more than just the formal belief that “I don’t have to obey God’s law.” It is the thought that since God loves me regardless of my record, he doesn’t mind how morally or immorally I live. It’s the attitude that “God so accepts me as I am; he only wants me to be myself.”
The other thought is this Forgiveness is only needed for the guilty
Ignorance does not equal innocence
when Jesus says, "Father, forgive them," he means they are guilty. Then when he says, "For they don't know what they are doing," he must mean, "And they should know what they are doing. And they are guilty for not knowing what they are doing." In other words, they have so much evidence of the truth that the only explanation for their ignorance is they don't want to see it. They are hard and resistant and have a guilty blindness. That is why they need to be forgiven.
So here are Gentiles and Jews killing the Son of God and the Messiah of Israel and the most innocent and loving man that ever existed. But they did not know whom they were killing. For this ignorance they were guilty and in need of forgiveness. And amazingly, Jesus is praying for them that his Father would open their eyes and help them to see their sin, repent, and be forgiven. That is the beautiful thing about this prayer of Jesus: It declares guilt and offers forgiveness at the same time.
There was evidence, and there is evidence, that Jesus is the sin-bearing Messiah and Son of God who he claimed to be. For example, 1) his supernatural healings; 2) his authority over nature; 3) his power over demons; 4) his compassion for outcasts (like lepers) and his association with the lowly; 5) his simplicity of life and indifference to wealth; 6) his unparalleled wisdom and his seeing through hypocrisy; 7) his indifference to human praise and devotion to the good of others; 8) his living for the glory of God; 9) his willingness to die for others; 10) his claim to be the Messiah and Son of God.Those are some of the evidences that made the ignorance of his killers a guilty ignorance.
When is He praying ?
Charles Spurgeon said:
“It was not a prayer for enemies who had done him an ill deed years before, but for those who were there and then murdering him. Not in cold blood did the Saviour pray, after he had forgotten the injury, and could the more easily forgive it, but while the first red drops of blood were spurting on the hands which drove the nails; while yet the hammer was bestained with crimson gore, his blessed mouth poured out the fresh warm prayer, "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do."...
If our Saviour might have paused from intercessory prayer, it was surely when they fastened him to the tree; when they were guilty of direct acts of deadly violence to his divine person, he might then have ceased to present petitions on their behalf. But sin cannot tie the tongue of our interceding Friend! Oh, what comfort is here! You have sinned, believer, you have grieved his Spirit, but you have not stopped that potent tongue which pleads for you.”
“it seems easier to be god than to love god.”
In light of this, how should we forgive?
- Many times, our willingness to forgive is directly tied to the other person’s ability to know what they’ve done. We’re willing to forgive just as long as we see this person truly knows how badly they’ve messed up. We’re willing to forgive as long as we see the sorrow and remorse they’re feeling. But not before then.
Many times, our willingness to forgive is directly tied to the other person’s ability to know what they’ve done. We’re willing to forgive just as long as we see this person truly knows how badly they’ve messed up. We’re willing to forgive as long as we see the sorrow and remorse they’re feeling. But not before then.
If that were the way God viewed forgiveness would there be any salvation for us? If the only way God would forgive us is if we truly realized the enormity of our sin, showing a remorse and sorrow, confessing and repenting just the right way, would there be any forgiveness and salvation for us? No.
So Jesus prays, interceding for us, not just when we’re repenting, but especially when we’re not. Especially when we don’t know the enormity of how we’ve wronged Him and are not confessing.
Are you called to forgive those who have wronged you and either doesn’t know it, or doesn’t care? Yes, because that’s when God forgave you. You didn’t know the enormity of your sinfulness or how to confess nor did you want to. You didn’t know how to repent nor would you ever try to. You were His enemy and wanted nothing to do with Him. In the midst of you wronging Him every chance you got, God offered you mercy and forgave you.
Jesus prayed for forgiveness for us, not when we were sorry for our sins, but when we were happy in our sins.

YOU:

This was a costly prayer. It will be the hardest prayer you’ll ever say!
Our final assurance of forgiveness is God’s answer to this prayer.
If God was willing to answer the prayer of Jesus, even though He was becoming the filth of sin on the cross, how much more, now that He’s exalted, perfectly pure, holy and righteous, seated at His right hand? If God was willing to answer the prayer, the interceding on our behalf for us on the cross, while we were His enemies, how much more now that we’re His kids?
The hard work of the cross is done. The hardest prayer in the entire world God could answer has been answered. And now, it’s easy.
Jesus is still interceding for you. He’s at the right hand of the Father, interceding for us. Every time we sin, He asks the Father to forgive us. If He answered Jesus’ prayer while He was the filth of sin, how much now that He is exalted, holy and righteous, seated at His right hand? If He was willing to forgive us while we were His enemies, killing His son, how much more now that we’re His children?
If we’ve been forgiven, to this depth and extent, by our heavenly Father, pray and ask God whom He is calling you to forgive. Whoever that person is, no matter what they’ve done, pray and ask God to give you the grace to forgive them today.
Read story of Pennsylvania tragedy.
So this morning here in this room, if you are rejecting Jesus as Son of God and Lord and Savior of your life, he declares that you are guilty AND he offers himself as the sacrifice to pay for your sins and forgive all the sins you have ever done and ever will do. "Father, forgive them, for they don't know what they are doing."
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