Wednesday, December 17, 2014

SERMON: Go over the bridge to God’s side

By DAVID BILDERBACK, Special to The Ottawa Herald | 12/27/2013

In John 1:29, John the Baptist sees Jesus walking toward him and says, “Look the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.”

John could be referring to Jesus as the Passover Lamb or the Servant Lamb referred to in Isaiah 53:7. In this text, the prophet Isaiah says, “All we are like sheep who have gone astray, we have turned every one to his own way and the Lord has laid on [Jesus] the iniquity of us all.”

In John 1:29, John the Baptist sees Jesus walking toward him and says, “Look the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.”

John could be referring to Jesus as the Passover Lamb or the Servant Lamb referred to in Isaiah 53:7. In this text, the prophet Isaiah says, “All we are like sheep who have gone astray, we have turned every one to his own way and the Lord has laid on [Jesus] the iniquity of us all.”

Isaiah clearly states here that we each are affected by sin. Before accepting Jesus Christ as our Savior, we each go our own way. We follow our own thoughts, ideas and desires. We are only concerned with how the outcome of any thing affects us.

In Ezekiel 18:20, the following word of the Lord came to Ezekiel: “The soul who sins shall die.”

That is the sentence for choosing our own way and has been since the fall.  

God placed Adam in a state of happiness in the Garden of Eden and promised to permanently establish him and his descendants in it if he obeyed God’s command not to eat from the tree described as “the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.” The issue came down to whether Adam would let God determine what was good and bad or would seek to decide that for himself, in disregard of what God said. Adam’s decision left man in opposition to God and in need of a mediator between God and man.

Isaiah addresses this issue in the second half of Verse 7 when he says, “and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.” John the Baptist calls Jesus “the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.” To be able to do this, Jesus had to be sinless.

In 2nd Corinthians 5:21, the Apostle Paul states that, “For our sake [God] made [Jesus] to be sin who knew no sin, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God.” If death is the condemnation for sin, and Jesus was sinless, there is no reason Jesus should die unless He died in the place of sinners.

In 1st Peter 2:24-25, we are given the answer, “[Jesus] himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed. For you were straying like sheep, but have now returned to the Shepherd and the overseer of your souls. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive” (1st Corinthians 15:22).

Jesus bridged the gap, but each of us still must go over the bridge to the side of God.

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