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2008-02-10_My Time Is Near_Matthew 26.1-30_SL

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My Time Is Near

Matthew 26:1-30   |   Shaun LePage   |   February 10, 2008

My Time Is Near

Matthew 26:1-30   |   Shaun LePage   |   February 10, 2008

I.       Introduction

A.    Illustration: The Cross of Christ, Stott, p.17; Shadow of Death story

B.    Context—final days and hours before the Cross; so central to our faith and salvation

II.     Body—Matthew 26:1-30; examine the text first and foremost

A.    The Prediction (1-2)

1.     (1) “Finished all these words”—Olivet Discourse; don’t miss drama! Described His coming in glory with angels, judging the nations→business of the cross! Shocking!

2.     (2) “Crucifixion” prediction. Remarkable: predicted time (Passover) and way He would die (crucified); no coincidence Jesus died on Passover. He was the “Lamb of God” (Jn 1:29), the perfect sacrifice for sin (Heb 9:26); 4X we know of, Jesus predicted His death: Mt 16:21,17:22,23,20:17-19—preparing disciples; showing them His plan—not a mistake; proof of His deity, in complete control!

B.    The Plot (3-5)

1.     (3) “Chief priests and elders…gathered” (illegal to hold private meeting to plot death of man not yet convicted of anything); how did Matt know about this private/secret meeting? Jn 19:38-39"3:1; Ac 6:7—Nicodemus/priests probably reported to Matt

2.     (4-5) “plotted…seize Jesus by stealth and kill Him”—dishonest / knew Jesus was innocent or why be afraid of the crowds? decided not to arrest Jesus during the Passover feast or there might be riots; but “seized and killed” Jesus exactly when they said they wouldn’t—during Passover feast / Unleavened Bread. God is sovereign, His plan was Passover. Ironically, Jesus’ enemies tried to kill Him before, but God did not allow it. Now enemies wanted to wait, but Jesus died on God’s timetable.

C.    The Preparation (6-13)

1.     (6) “Bethany…home of Simon the leper” odd—no one would have had dinner with him (unclean and contagious). Probably: Jesus healed him!

2.     (7) “a woman” (Jn 12 if same event “Mary” Lazarus’ sister); “Simon” may have been Lazarus’ father; “alabaster vial”— used for very precious perfumes; “very costly perfume” (about a year’s wage; probably heirloom; “perfumed oil”), contents fresh only once, long neck broken to open; “poured it on His head” (and feet, Jn 12)—lavish!

3.     (8-9) “disciples indignant…waste?” (Jn 12 “Judas”—objected the most). Honestly—I probably would have said same thing; come on! year’s wages! Can’t imagine giving $30K? $50K? $100K? in an act of worship? But, showed: 1) Mary loved Jesus, felt He was worthy of (probably) her most valuable possession; 2) Mary believed Jesus was going to die (more than we can say for disciples)—see Lk 10:38ff; 3) Mary understood that worship—Jesus Himself—was even more important than helping the poor.

4.     (10-11) Disciples call it “a waste” (v.8). Jesus (v.10): “A beautiful thing.” What does this say? 1) Worship is primary. We put some good deeds in higher category; God’s glory should be our goal whatever we do; (v. 11) not futile to help poor; but worship is more important; 2) Worship is giving. Whether we give time, talents, treasures (like “costly perfume”), songs, attitudes—to worship is to give to God; Rm 12:1;

5.     (12-13) “to prepare Me for burial”—shows Mary listened/believed; Jn 12 “tears / hair”; “in memory of her” this morning; honored for lavish “wasteful” worship

D.    The Pretender (14-16)

1.     (14) “one of the twelve”—remarkable! had been with Jesus for years; heard teaching, witnessed miracles; often heard invitation to “believe”; heard Jesus claim to be the Messiah / God, but he’s a pretender—not one of the believers.

2.     Judas (Jn 12) rebuked for calling “beautiful” gift “waste”; reacted sinfully to rebuke—embarrassed, angry, not happy about “crucifixion” talk, made worst mistake of his life; Judas stealing from bag (Jn 12:6) so also motivated by greed, so “went to chief priests”

3.     (15-16) “30 pieces of silver”—Ex 21:32 price of a dead slave (note: price / rejection of Messiah predicted Zech 11); apparently didn’t bargain for more, not just about money; Lk & Jn tell us Satan himself was behind this; “opportunity”—away from crowds

E.    The Passover (17-30)

1.     (17-19) Preparation of Passover; “Feast of Unleavened Bread” week following Passover (“first day”; Thursday) Jews not allowed to eat unleavened bread (no yeast) because Jews left Egypt in a hurry (no time for bread to rise) and left behind evil of cruel pagans who enslaved them; “My time is near”—again, Jesus in total control

2.     (20-25) Identification of the betrayer. “evening” after sundown Thurs; “…one of you will betray me”—omniscience; imagine—we know, they didn’t! “deeply grieved”; “each one…surely not I, Lord” Judas not obviously evil; disciples didn’t say, “Judas will betray You!” They knew they were capable. We are all capable—might not sell our souls to the devil like Judas, but might deny Him like Peter (26:27); “the one who has dipped…” Jesus just saying the betrayer was one of the 12—one eating with Him that night; (24) OT predicted His death, going to die according to God’s plan, but Judas responsible for his part; God is all-knowing, uses sin to bring about His purposes (Acts 2:22,23)—Instead of: “I don’t believe in God because there’s pain and suffering.” We can say in faith: “I don’t understand all pain and suffering, but I believe in God”; (25) Jesus identified His betrayer though Judas trying to hide his sin

3.     (26-30). Establishment of the Lord’s Supper. breaking bread, giving thanks, drinking wine—all part of Passover. Jesus added, “this is My body…My blood”; broken bread would now represent the sacrificed body of Jesus, wine (cup of redemption) now represent blood of Jesus—both images to remind us of Cross (future); “blood of the covenant” Jer 31 “new covenant…for the forgiveness of sins”; ended covenant with Moses, and changed the way God deals with people. Instead of Jews forgiven temporarily through animal sacrifice, all people receive permanent forgiveness through perfect sacrifice of Jesus; (29) for “deeply grieved” disciples—He would die / be separated, but that’s not the end of the story: “…with you in My Father’s kingdom!” Rev 5:9—Cross looks back to Jesus’ death and ahead to His return; “hymn” at end

III.   Closing: Three obvious challenges…

A.    Covenant with Jesus—He is so trustworthy! Power to prevent death (predicted it 4X), but chose it (Phil 2:5-11) “for forgiveness of sins”—Rom 3:21-28; Accept forgiveness of sins

B.    Connect Passover and Lord’s Supper—Passover was an act of remembrance (Ex 12:14); remembering God’s deliverance of His people from slavery (nothing magical); but also looked forward to Christ, the “Lamb of God” 1 Cor 5:7; Heb 10:1-10; Lord’s Supper much simplified Passover—observe regularly to remember 1 Cor 11:23-26—“remembrance…proclaim” just like Passover; Remember God’s deliverance

C.    Contrast Mary and Judas—Story of Judas is sobering; As Judas heard Jesus’ words clearly and knew them well, we can know the Bible inside and out, be in church every Sunday, but that doesn’t mean we’ve believed / put our trust in Jesus Christ, doesn’t mean we’re “in Christ,” doesn’t mean we’re incapable of horrible sin; doesn’t mean we’ve worshiped; How is Judas contrasted with Mary? “30 pieces of silver” (little) contrasted the cost of Mary’s perfume (much). Mary gave and Judas took. Mary gave as an act of worship. Judas took as an act of betrayal. Mary gave because she knew what was really valuable. Judas took because he had no idea what was valuable; pouring your love/worship on Jesus, giving Him glory in any way is not a “waste”; Give costly worship

IV.  Closing Prayer…

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