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Sermons about Messiah
Jesus is the Messiah: the Servant of Israel, the Son of God, the Savior of the world.
Last week we heard Peter’s wonderful confession about Jesus, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” And then we heard Jesus’ reply, “He strictly charged them to tell no one about him.” Why in the world would Jesus tell someone who had just confessed who He truly was, to tell no one else? Remember the blind man. Jesus said this because their eye sight had only been restored part way. They saw the Messiah but only like the man who saw men like trees walking. The disciples only thought they truly saw Jesus and knew who He was, but it immediately becomes clear they didn’t have a clue. One minute Peter was giving a marvelous confession of who Christ was and the next minute Christ was rebuking Peter and calling him Satan. What’s going on here? Our text tells us. Jesus was about to open their eyes the rest of the way and they were totally unprepared for what they saw. They probably wish they had stayed blind.
They were all looking for the Messiah . . . they just did not realize that He would be the Prophet (Dt 18), the Suffering Servant (Is 53), and the King (2 Sam 7).
Lesson Aim: To grow in our understanding of how Jesus increasingly grasped who He was and what He came to do.
Stephen’s message brought an indictment against the nation of Israel. The patriarch’s initially rejected the savior of their nation Joseph. Israel initially rejected Moses and then they rejected the law. Israel limited their worship of God to one place and their relationship with God did not affect the rest of their lives. In summary they rejected God and every person God sent to them. In Acts 7 verse 51 Stephen brings his message to a convicting conclusion. It would be hard for anyone to say that they did not understand his message. I. Stephen’s indictment A. You are stiff-necked (Acts 7:51) 1. Uncircumcised in heart 2. Uncircumcised in ear B. You always resist the Holy Spirit – like your father’s did C. Your fathers persecuted prophets (Acts 7:52) 1. Which one didn’t they persecute? 2. They killed those who foretold Messiah’s coming D. Look how you treated the Just One (Acts 7:52b, 53) 1. You have become His betrayers 2. You have become His murderers E. You have received the law and have not kept it II. Their reaction A. They were cut to the heart (Acts 7:54) B. They were really mad – gnashing their teeth at him III. God gave Stephen a confirming peek into heaven (Acts 7:55) A. He was full of the Holy Spirit and got let him see into heaven 1. He saw the glory of God 2. He saw Jesus standing at the right hand of the Father B. He told the crowd what he was seeing (Acts 7:56) 1. I see the heavens opened up 2. I see the Son of Man at the right hand of God IV. That was it for the religious leaders A. They cried out with a loud voice (Acts 7:57) B. Covering their ears so they could hear no more C. They ran at him 1. Cast him out of the city (Acts 7:58) 2. Stoned him V. Stephen honored God in his last words A. As he was being stoned he asked the Lord Jesus to receive his spirit (Acts 7:59) B. Finally he knelt down and cried out 1. Lord do not charge them with this sin (Acts 7:60) 2. He fell asleep Stephen’s persecutors had a religion. Stephen had a relationship with God. Stephen was able to be like he was because the Holy Spirit was in him. Stephen saw the “Son of Man” standing at the right hand of the Father (God was moved by this relationship). He died at peace with all men and was immediately with Jesus.
Jesus journeys to Jerusalem for the Feast of Tabernacles. The people are waiting, but so are the religious leaders . . . and it gets tense!
The crowds ask, who is this, Jesus of Nazareth? He is the Messiah.
One of history's most common questions has been, "Who is Jesus?" Yet who better to answer that question than Jesus himself. In this message, Pastor Jeremy shows us that Jesus taught and claimed to be 1) The Obedient Son, 2) The Promised Messiah, and 3) The Great I Am.
Confidence that our church will grow is not based on size, resources, staff or money. Our confidence comes from three assurances in Matthew 16: Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God; Jesus promised to build his church; Jesus will not allow the evil one to prevail. Although Jesus could build his church without us, he graciously allows us to be involved. But before we begin to fly, we need to learn some principles of flying.