Understanding the Will of God! A Passion Sunday Sermon based on Isaiah 50:4-9a
† In Jesus’ Name †
May the grace and mercy of God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ cause us to endure, as we realize we can depend on Him!
- Sunday of the Passion – He rides on to die
Only Jesus knew.
Only He knew that these people that were shouting Alleluia – Praise God, and Hosanna – Save us, were going to be crying “Crucify Him” a few days later.
Only He knew that.
And kept riding to Jerusalem, he kept riding on to die.
I had a friend who wrote a paper once, that it couldn’t be the same crowd, because no one could turn that fast on someone. He had all the justifications set up, the arguments put into place. Good arguments, but when it came down to it, it was all based in speculation.
At least he was honest in why he took that position.
He didn’t want to believe he could go from praising God, and sincerely asking for help to wanting to be rid of God in his life.
But we do that.
And still, Jesus knew that, and He still road on to die.
For you…. For me.
That is why this is not just Palm Sunday… it is the Sunday of the Passion…. Where Jesus showed how passionately He loves us. How completely He throws Himself into this relationship that we have with Him.
And so, He rides on to die… so that the prophecy of Isaiah will be fulfilled…
“The Sovereign LORD (that is, the Father) has given me his words of wisdom, so that I know how to comfort the weary”
For the will of God the Father was that the Son, knowing our sin, knowing we would call for His death, would ride on to die.
The trust between the Father and the Son –
We know this passage from Isaiah is about Jesus for reason, Verse 5.
“The Sovereign LORD has spoken to me, and I have listened. I have not rebelled or turned away.”
I wish I could say that this was true about every one of you. That you have never rebelled, that you have never ever turned away from God. That you never had sinned. I know I can’t say it about me. That would be the biggest lie ever told.
Paul tells us that “everyone has sinned and is far away from God’s saving presence.” Romans 3:23 (TEV)
And Isaiah adds in, “6 All of us, like sheep, have strayed away. We have left God’s paths to follow our own.” Isaiah 53:6 (NLT2)
But Jesus never sinned, not once. He never rebelled. And so we know that it is He that can goive us comfort when we are tired and burnt out. It is He that can bear the burden of the sin and its guilt and shame that we must deal with.
Even at the price Isaiah described,
“I offered my back to those who beat me and my cheeks to those who pulled out my beard. I did not hide my face from mockery and spitting”
I may be wrong, but I think what causes the most suffering to Jesus on the cross is not the piercing of his hands and feet, or hanging there.
It was that we despised Him enough that He had to go to the cross. It was that our sin, even the sins we committed this week, continue to mock Him, and the love that sent Him there, to save us.
And knew all that would be there, as He rode on to Jerusalem, as He road on…to die.
Jesus finds the strength to do that, in the Father’s love and care for Him.
Because the Sovereign LORD helps me, I will not be disgraced. Therefore, I have set my face like a stone, determined to do his will. And I know that I will not be put to shame.
Hear the same idea from Luke’s gospel
51 And it came to pass, when the days were well-nigh come that he should be received up, he stedfastly set his face to go to Jerusalem, Luke 9:51 (ASV)
31 Taking the twelve disciples aside, Jesus said, “Listen, we’re going up to Jerusalem, where all the predictions of the prophets concerning the Son of Man will come true. 32 He will be handed over to the Romans, and he will be mocked, treated shamefully, and spit upon. 33 They will flog him with a whip and kill him, but on the third day he will rise again.” Luke 18:31-33 (NLT2)
He knew all this – it was our sin that drove Him there, because He passionately loved us, and wanted to heal us of all that is broken in our lives.
This is Jesus, the servant who suffered all our rejection, that we would be able to be forgiven, the consequences of our sin erased – completely. You see He knew that too – that is why Hebrews tells us that it was for joy that Jesus went to the cross.
Sure it was shameful, sue our rejection was brutal and the pain excruciating.
But He went… knowing that He was saving us, and that this was the will of God.
And may knowing this, help you to experience His love for you… even as you come to His celebration feast, and take and eat His body and drink His blood! Amen!