Take a look at the sermon outline for second message in this series
King of Glory – 2
- Who is this King of Glory?
- Have you ever wondered why Jesus is often referred to as Jesus Christ? Besides being something people shot out when the stub their toe, the name has incredible significance. It is not Jesus’ last name. The word Christ in Greek (Christos) is the equivalent of the Old Testament word for Messiah which literally means the anointed King.
- To say Jesus Christ is a confession that Jesus is the king, Jesus is Lord. That confession would get you thrown to wild beasts in the colosseum in first century Rome. It was a statement of treason – only Caesar was lord.
- To be called a Christian meant that you had aligned your life and loyalty to Jesus the Christ. It was a derogatory term used by unbelievers first in the Roman city of Antioch.
- The prophets foretold many things concerning this anointed King who was to come:
- The Messiah would be the seed/offspring of a woman and would crush the head of Satan (Genesis 3:15).
- He would come from the seed/offspring of Abraham and would bless all the nations on earth (Genesis 12:3).
- He would be a “prophet like Moses” to whom God said we must listen (Deuteronomy 18:15).
- He would be born in Bethlehem of Judah (Micah 5:2).
- He would be born of a virgin (Isaiah 7:14).
- He would have a throne, a kingdom and a dynasty, or house, starting with King David, that will last forever (2 Samuel 7:16).
- He would be called “Wonderful Counselor,” “Mighty God,” “Everlasting Father,” “Prince of Peace,” and would possess an everlasting kingdom (Isaiah 9:6-7).
- He would ride into Jerusalem on a donkey, righteous and having salvation, coming with gentleness (Zechariah 9:9-10).
- He would be pierced for our transgression and crushed for our iniquities (Isaiah 53:5).
- He would die among the wicked ones but be buried with the rich (Isaiah 53:9).
- He would be resurrected from the grave, for God would not allow His Holy One to suffer decay (Psalm 16:10).
- He would come again from the clouds of heaven as the Son of Man (Daniel 7:13-14).
- He would be the “Sun of Righteousness” for all who revere Him and look for His coming again (Malachi 4:2).
- He is the One whom Israel will one day recognize as the One they pierced, causing bitter grief (Zechariah 12:10).
- Jesus Christ means Jesus is the prophesied long awaited, anointed king.
1 John 5:1 – Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God, and everyone who loves the Father loves whoever has been born of him.
- But when Jesus showed up his own people didn’t believe that he was the Messiah because they had created their own idea of what the messiah would be like. They believed this anointed king would come in power to rescue them from their enemy. They were partially right – he would save them from their greatest enemy – death. But they wanted a different kind of king than what they got.
- But the prophets had told that the king was also a suffering servant:
Acts 3:18 – But what God foretold by the mouth of all the prophets, that his Christ would suffer, he thus fulfilled.
1 Peter 1:10-11 – As to this salvation, the prophets who prophesied of the grace that would come to you made careful searches and inquiries, seeking to know what person or time the Spirit of Christ within them was indicating as He predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories to follow.
- The prophets predicted the sufferings of the anointed king. But no one wanted a suffering king, we all want a victorious king. Who would have thought that Christ’s victory would come through dying on a cross?
- Paul once said to the church in Corinth something that needs to recapture our amazement:
1 Cor 2:2 – For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.
- There are many theologians past and present such as Kierkegaard who have pitted Jesus against Paul – saying the preached two different gospels. Jesus the gospel of the kingdom and Paul the gospel of justification by faith. That is a false dichotomy. Paul says I knew nothing but Jesus as king and that king crucified.
- Last week we started a new sermon series on the Lordship of Jesus called King of Glory. We saw that Jesus is the king of glory who has come to establish his kingdom on earth as it is in heaven. Today, I want to answer the question – what kind of king is Jesus?
- Let us return to the scene found in Psalm 24. There is a processional approaching the walled city of Jerusalem and yet the gates of the city are closed. And so there comes a shout from the processional to fling open the gates because the king of glory has arrived. This king has made Jerusalem the place where his throne is established.
- And so the gate keeper shouts back – who is this king of glory? What an jaw dropping scene, Jesus is outside the gates and unrecognized by the gatekeepers – who is he? To which the response comes He is the Lord, strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle, he is the King!
- They didn’t recognize their own king! This psalm turns out to be a prophesy.
- That is what the Israelites anticipated when waiting for their Messiah to show up – they pictured him on a stallion riding in as a conquering king returning to Jerusalem after fighting their battles for them – He is the Lord strong and mighty, that’s what a king looks like right? But vision is more powerful than sight.
- Fast forward the scene a few centuries later. There is another processional entering the city of Jerusalem, a king is coming, but this is no ordinary king. Jesus the king comes riding in on a donkey.
Matt 21: 6 – This took place to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet, saying,
“Say to the daughter of Zion,
‘Behold, your king is coming to you,
humble, and mounted on a donkey,
on a colt, the foal of a beast of burden.’”
- Matthew quotes the prophet Zachariah. The original went like this:
Zech 9:9 – Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; righteous and having salvation is he, humble and mounted on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.
- So just like in Psalm 24 The Lord who is the king is riding into Jerusalem. He is righteous and having salvation. He receives the greeting of a king. But here’s the thing – when we hear the word “salvation” we think of saving souls from eternal destruction. When the Jews heard “having salvation” they thought in terms of national freedom – salvation from Roman captivity.
Matt: 21:6-10 – The disciples went and did as Jesus had directed them. 7 They brought the donkey and the colt and put on them their cloaks, and he sat on them. 8 Most of the crowd spread their cloaks on the road, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. 9 And the crowds that went before him and that followed him were shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!” And when he entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred up, saying, “Who is this?”
- Jesus entrance was a way to show that he was a different kind of king and so just like in Psa 24 the people ask – who is this? Who is this king of glory riding in on a donkey? What they saw was a carpenter on a donkey. They didn’t recognize their own king.
- The people are shouting Hosanna in the highest, Hosanna to the son of David, Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! – they appear to be worshipping Jesus as he rides into town – But then they turn right around and say – who is this? They were worshipping their image of what a king should be and what he should do, they were worshipping their expectations – but this king was different and thus they didn’t know him.
- We see this again in John 6. Jesus has just feed 5.000 people bread and fish and John tells us something very revealing.
John 6:14-15 – After the people saw the sign Jesus performed, they began to say, “Surely this is the Prophet who is to come into the world.” 15 Jesus, knowing that they intended to come and make him king by force, withdrew again to a mountain by himself.
- Why did Jesus withdraw? Because the enthusiasm these people had for Jesus was not based on who he really was and what he had come to do. People can have great enthusiasm for Jesus but their excitement is over the wrong Jesus.
- We can be guilty of this today – we have our own version of Jesus we get excited about – the Jesus that’s going to bless me and give me health and wealth, Jesus who improves your sex life, Jesus who fixes your marriage, Jesus who boosts your dreams and goals, Jesus who helps you succeed in sports, Jesus my homeboy, the Jesus who is a great moral example, the Jesus who is a good man, an ancient prophet, a religious leader – People can worship the wrong Jesus.
- These people wanted to make Jesus king by force – but they wanted him to be a king for selfish gain – wow this guy can give us bread whenever we want it. Jesus says – I am the bread that nourishes and saves you. We use Jesus to make much of ourselves and to enforce our agenda. Jesus is on our side of the political fence.
- The church in Corinth loved celebrity preachers. They even had a group they called the super apostles. The apostle Paul had a different approach.
1 Cor 2:1-8 – When I came to you, I did not come with eloquence or human wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. I came to you in weakness with great fear and trembling. My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom, but on God’s power.
We do, however, speak a message of wisdom among the mature, but not the wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. No, we declare God’s wisdom, a mystery that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began. None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the King of glory.
- Paul spoke a very counter cultural message that wasn’t entertaining and in fact was thought to be fool’s talk. None of the rulers of this age could understand because if they would have they would not have crucified the King of glory. Let that phrase soak in – crucified the King of glory.
- That is the object of our faith – a crucified king.
- So many of us wish we had more faith as if faith was the point. If only I had more faith, God grant me more faith. Our need is not more faith. The issue is the object of our faith which is Jesus. We don’t need more faith we need more Jesus. The more we understand and look at Jesus, the more our faith increases because our vision of Jesus increases.
Hebrews 12:1-2 – let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.
- We don’t muster up more faith, we fix our eyes on Jesus who pioneered and is perfecting our faith.
2 Cor 3:18 – And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.
- How can I be transformed? How can I grow from one degree of Glory to the next? By focusing on how I’m doing? How I’m performing? How wonderful I am? By focusing on how much I am improving or feeling shame when I fail to improve? – no – I don’t grow by trying to watch myself grow – I am transformed by beholding Jesus.
- I don’t read my Bible to check off my spiritual growth check list – I read it to behold Jesus! People say I don’t need theology, just give me Jesus – which Jesus do you want – only biblical theology can reveal who Jesus truly is and what kind of king he is. We don’t get to decide – we can’t force him to be the kind of king we think we need – the one who meets our demands and agendas.
- Did you know that the members of the Klu Klux Klan consider themselves to a Christian organization? Listen to this quote from a Slate magazine article – “Modern Klan groups are careful to refer to their ritual as “cross lighting” rather than cross-burning and insist that their fires symbolize faith in Christ.”
- They don’t worship the same Jesus I do! They don’t worship the Jesus that is revealed in Scripture! No the Jesus I worship doesn’t burn crosses, he died on one for the sake of every race.
Transition: It’s impossible to understand Jesus, his lordship and his kingdom apart from the cross.
- The Crucified King
- Before Pilate (turn to John 18)
- Ironically, even though Jesus tried to avoid being made into the kind of king the people wanted, it was the charge of treason against Rome that would get him crucified. The Jews could not execute anyone so they portrayed Jesus as an enemy of the state before the Roman officials.
John 18:28 – Then the Jewish leaders took Jesus from Caiaphas to the palace of the Roman governor. By now it was early morning, and to avoid ceremonial uncleanness they did not enter the palace, because they wanted to be able to eat the Passover.
- I include this verse for the sheer irony of the passage – These Jewish leaders didn’t want to become unclean by entering a pagan palace so they could eat the Passover. The Passover pointed to Jesus whom they wanted to sacrifice. So blind!!! They wanted to worship God and stay pure all the while they were plotting to kill His Son.
John 18:29- 40– So Pilate came out to them and asked, “What charges are you bringing against this man?” “If he were not a criminal,” they replied, “we would not have handed him over to you.” Pilate said, “Take him yourselves and judge him by your own law.”
“But we have no right to execute anyone,” they objected. This took place to fulfill what Jesus had said about the kind of death he was going to die. Pilate then went back inside the palace, summoned Jesus and asked him, “Are you the king of the Jews?” “Is that your own idea,” Jesus asked, “or did others talk to you about me?” “Am I a Jew?” Pilate replied. “Your own people and chief priests handed you over to me. What is it you have done?” Jesus said, “My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jewish leaders. But now my kingdom is from another place.” “You are a king, then!” said Pilate. Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. In fact, the reason I was born and came into the world is to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.” “What is truth?” retorted Pilate. With this he went out again to the Jews gathered there and said, “I find no basis for a charge against him. But it is your custom for me to release to you one prisoner at the time of the Passover. Do you want me to release ‘the king of the Jews’?”
They shouted back, “No, not him! Give us Barabbas!” Now Barabbas had taken part in an uprising.
- Pilate asks Jesus are you a king? Jesus in essence says yes but not the kind your thinking about, not the Roman kind – my kingdom is from another place. My kingdom is not of this world, my kingdom looks nothing like the kingdoms of this world and I am like no king that this world has ever known.
- Pilate has no fear that Jesus is out to conquer Rome so he tries to let him go do you want me to release to you your king, the king of the Jews. They so no – give us Barabbas. John tells us that Barabbas had taken part in an uprising.
- And there it is – we want a different king of King – atleast Barabbas will take up arms and fight the Romans and lead an insurrection of violence and bloodshed. Jesus was all about bloodshed all right, not his enemies but his own for the sake of his enemies.
- Don’t you know that no one was more shocked by these circumstances than Barabbas! He was waiting for a cross on death row. He was the most wanted man in Rome. They had a tall cross in the center spot reserved for him. He had blood on his hands, guilty beyond question – and yet Jesus takes his place, Jesus died on Barabbas cross and Barabbas walks away a free man.
- That’s my story as well. That’s the story of all who have trusted in Jesus rather than their own goodness to save them. We are all guilty, marked with the sentence of death for the wages of our sin. And yet Jesus took our place and we walk away free.
- Look at John 19:1-6
Then Pilate took Jesus and had him flogged. 2 The soldiers twisted together a crown of thorns and put it on his head. They clothed him in a purple robe 3 and went up to him again and again, saying, “Hail, king of the Jews!” And they slapped him in the face.
4 Once more Pilate came out and said to the Jews gathered there, “Look, I am bringing him out to you to let you know that I find no basis for a charge against him.” 5 When Jesus came out wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe, Pilate said to them, “Here is the man!”
6 As soon as the chief priests and their officials saw him, they shouted, “Crucify! Crucify!”
- Pilate makes a mockery out of Jesus being a king. He makes him a crown out of twisted thorns. They clothed him in a purple robe, the color of royalty and the whole time they mockingly said “hail, king of the Jews” and they slapped him in the face.
- Then Pilate brings him back in front of the bloodthirsty Jews. Behold the man! As if to say he is harmless, he’s a joke, maybe a bit coo-coo! He’s no threat! Just look at him – does this look like a real king to you?
- This had a different impact on the Jews, it infuriated them, Satan was working within them – they are enraged by the mocking that this man is their king! It’s an insult. So they say crucify him!!!!
- Pilate is like well that didn’t work – so you crucify him and they said we can’t but he claims to be the Son of God. There was only one son of God and that was Caesar
John 19:8 ff – When Pilate heard this, he was even more afraid, 9 and he went back inside the palace. “Where do you come from?” he asked Jesus, but Jesus gave him no answer. 10 “Do you refuse to speak to me?” Pilate said. “Don’t you realize I have power either to free you or to crucify you?” Jesus answered, “You would have no power over me if it were not given to you from above. Therefore the one who handed me over to you is guilty of a greater sin.”
12 From then on, Pilate tried to set Jesus free, but the Jewish leaders kept shouting, “If you let this man go, you are no friend of Caesar. Anyone who claims to be a king opposes Caesar.”
13 When Pilate heard this, he brought Jesus out and sat down on the judge’s seat at a place known as the Stone Pavement (which in Aramaic is Gabbatha). 14 It was the day of Preparation of the Passover; it was about noon. “Here is your king,” Pilate said to the Jews.
15 But they shouted, “Take him away! Take him away! Crucify him!”
“Shall I crucify your king?” Pilate asked. “We have no king but Caesar,” the chief priests answered. Finally Pilate handed him over to them to be crucified.
- Pilate sits in the judge’s seat – obviously clueless to the fact that the day would come when he would stand before the judgment of Christ. He says one last time – here is your king and the people say we have no king but Caesar. They hate Caesar. They wanted Jesus to conquer Caesar and now they would rather have the oppressor as their king then the one who came to set them free.
- Here’s Your Sign
John 19:16-22 – So the soldiers took charge of Jesus. Carrying his own cross, he went out to the place of the Skull (which in Aramaic is called Golgotha). There they crucified him, and with him two others—one on each side and Jesus in the middle. Pilate had a notice prepared and fastened to the cross. It read: Jesus of Nazareth, the king of the Jews. Many of the Jews read this sign, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city, and the sign was written in Aramaic, Latin and Greek. The chief priests of the Jews protested to Pilate, “Do not write ‘The King of the Jews,’ but that this man claimed to be king of the Jews.” Pilate answered, “What I have written, I have written.”
- Let’s think about this through the lens of Psalm 24 again. There is a procession outside the city walls. The gates have been shut. The king who is over all is broken and beaten beyond recognition. He is so weak from being tortured that a man from Cyrene named Simon has to carry his cross bar.
- He is taken to a place called the skull which was outside the city gates. People watched from above.
- Jesus is nailed to the cross and is lifted up. A guard places a ladder by the cross and climbs up and nails a sign above Jesus head – Its written in three languages and say Jesus of Nazereth the king of the Jews. It was the Sabbath so many Jews speaking an array of languages could read the sign.
- This is Pilates sick attempt at humor and another chance to make a jab at the Jews. They protest – don’t write that! Say he claimed to be the king of the Jews! He not actually the king!
- Who is this King of Glory? He is Jesus of Nazereth, the king of the Jews someone shouts and everyone laughs at the joke.
- Who is this king of glory? He is the Lord, mighty in battle another shouts in mockery as people roll their eyes and laugh even louder.
- Behold your king! – crucified between two criminals. Weak, broken, just another victim of the system. Mocked as a king. What kind of king dies on a cross? What kind of king claims to be the Lord and yet dies on a Roman cross. Who looks more powerful now – Caesar or Jesus? Vision is more powerful than sight.
- Think of the symbols of earthly kings – thrones, palaces, scepters, crowns, displays of wealth and power.
- Now look at Jesus crucified – there is grand processional to a palace, only a painful arch outside the city. No royal fragrance or incense, only the stink and waste of rotting garbage. No splendid throne inlaid with the plunders of an empire, only a common cross made for anyone. No olden crown of shining jewels, only horns digging into his flesh. No royal wine flowing in celebration, only blood and water spilling from his side. No cheers, only the sobs of the woman standing at a distance, faithful to the gory end.
- This is no ordinary king and his is no ordinary kingdom.
- Jesus is crucified between two thieves. It is probable that these two men were collaborators is the uprising led by Barabbas. His right hand man and his left hand man so to speak. Jewish insurrectionist.
- As he dies between these two thieves, even they mock him. And from the cross Jesus speaks nothing but love. Father forgive them, forgive them all for they don’t know what they are doing. They don’t know that they have just crucified the king of glory.
- And something changes in one of the thieves crucified next to Jesus. I think this may be the most amazing conversion testimony in all the Bible.
Luke 23:39-41 – One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: “Aren’t you the Messiah? Save yourself and us!” But the other criminal rebuked him. “Don’t you fear God,” he said, “since you are under the same sentence? We are punished justly, for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong. ”Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom. ”Jesus answered him, “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.”
- This is why I believe that salvation belongs alone to the Lord. Here is this man crucified, and he looks over and there is another man, covered in blood, the subject of mocking, wearing a crown of thorns and he concludes in that moment looking at Jesus on the cross – this truly is the king. When you come into your kingdom will you remember me?
- What does this man know about Jesus? – Jesus is the king. Jesus will conquer death! Jesus will reign in a different kind of kingdom!
- Jesus says to this dying man whose faith has cleansed him from every sin, “today you will be with me in paradise.” Jesus didn’t say, Oh now you want in on the deal – just a few minuets ago you were mocking me – too bad so sad buddy.
- That thief is a picture of you and me. How much good works was the thief able to provide to work his way into Jesus kingdom? He could do nothing. He was crucified, he was helpless, he had nothing to offer Jesus. He had no value that he could bring to the table. All he had was his obvious sin – he was a thief, he mocked Jesus – that’s all he had going for him
- And that all we have to offer as well. All he had was a confession that Jesus is Lord. He looked at a man crucified and said this is my only hope. He looked on Jesus.
- This king is like no other. Who is this king of glory dying on a cross – He is the Lord strong and mighty. Mighty in battle. Well he doesn’t look very strong and mighty – he looks defeated and conquered!
- His strength is found in weakness and he conquered death by dying. Who is this king of glory – it is Jesus Christ and him crucified.
Phil 2:5-11 – have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross! Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
- There is not a human being in all of history who will not say Jesus Christ is Lord, there is not a knee that will not bow before him – However it is only those who bend the knee before they die who will find life, they rest acknowledge him as king to their own destruction.
- Is Jesus the king of your life? Is Jesus you Christ, your Lord? Will you right now confess that Jesus Christ is Lord – is your Lord?
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