The Ultimate Act of Anger Toward God?

June 24, 2006

Introduction:
1.  Five weeks ago, we began a series entitled: Are You Mad at God?
- this was a follow-up question to the series Steve completed on the question: Is God Mad at Us?
2.  We began this series by looking at Genesis 4 when Cain was angry at God because God had accepted the sacrifice of Cain’s brother, Abel
- Cain’s anger led him to kill his brother – Lesson:  Be careful when you get angry
- the Apostle James wrote in the NT:
 James 1:19 This you know, my beloved brethren. But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger; 20 for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God.
3.  When man begins to listen to the desires of his heart instead of the Word of God, bad things begin to happen
ILL:  Phone call from a guy wanting to talk about the DaVinci Code
- everybody has a source of truth – for some, it’s human logic and reasoning, others God’s Word
- talking about salvation – I quoted John 14:6 – Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life, and no once comes to the Father but by Me.”
Response:  Who do you think you are?  What right do you have telling everybody there is only one way to get heaven and it’s YOUR WAY?
- I told him that I didn’t write the book, I’m only telling you what Jesus said-
Response: “If Jesus were standing in front of me right now, I’d punch Him in the mouth!”
- I said, “You can’t even jump 6 feet off the ground, what makes you think that you can whip the One Who created the heavens and the earth with the word of His mouth?
- I then quoted him:
 Philippians 2:10 so that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Response: “NOT THIS KNEE – I’ll never bow”
- I asked him, what are going to do when you stand at the Great White Throne, where the small and the great will stand before God, and Jesus judges your life based on your rejection of Him?
Response:  “When I stand before Jesus, I’ll spit in His face!”
- I warned him that choices had consequences . . . eternal consequences and all Jesus had done for Him in spite of his anger toward God
4.  Point: There are people TODAY who are angry at God
>  in part, because they don’t know Who God really is and what He’s done
>  OR they do know about God but don’t  want to acknowledge it because if they do, then they will have to admit that God is RIGHT, man is WRONG, and therefore they have to CHANGE
5.  Please open your bibles to John 18 page ___ of the bible under the chair in front of you, and page ___ of the Chinese/English bible.
- Last week we studied John 8 [how the scribes & Pharisees were looking for ways to accuse Jesus of something wrong
- Instead, Jesus confronted them with the truth – He answered all their questions [not the way they wanted, but He did answer them by telling them the truth]
- The result? – it wasn’t HUMILITY, PRAISE, THANKSGIVING, OBEDIENCE –  it was:
 John 8:59 Therefore they picked up stones to throw at Him . . .
6.  The bad news is – it didn’t stop there – the anger of this group toward Jesus continued
 John 9 – Jesus healed the blind man, and they fussed at Him about that
 John 10 – Jesus said, “I am the good shepherd” and they tried to seize Him again (10:39)
 John 11 – Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead and “from that day they planned together to kill Him” (11:53)
 John 12 – 18 – records the last days of Jesus’ life (from the Last Supper, to the Garden where He prayed, to His betrayal
- let’s begin [READING in John 18:12-14] –
v. 15-18 – summarize Peter’s denial
[READ John 18:19-24]
v. 25 – 37 – summarize going from Caiaphas to Pilate, and Pilate asking the question, “Are you the king of the Jews?” and vs. 38 “What is truth?”
[READ John 38-40, and John 19:1-18 – then conclude with John 19:28-30]
- we could title the message: The Ultimate Act of Anger Toward God? (The Crucifixion of Christ)


  I.  The Crucifixion Reveals Man’s Anger: “Crucify Him!”


- those comments (spoken from the heart) revealed man’s anger at the Son of God’s
A.  Man’s anger mocks God.
- this is where man and his pride is revealed – mocking God!
- Jesus was blindfolded and slapped in the face while being asked, “Who hit you?”
- He was beaten repeatedly even before He was delivered to Pilate who would have Him scourged [explain the process]
Goal: To make a complete mockery of His claim that He was a king!
[explain the crown of thorns – PICTURE]
No victim of injustice was ever more innocent than the sinless Son of God. And yet no one ever suffered more agony than He did.  He was cruelly executed by men who openly acknowledged His faultlessness.  Yet at the same time Barabbas, a murderous, thieving insurrectionist, was summarily set free.  It was the greatest travesty of justice the world will ever see.” – MacArthur, The Murder of Jesus, p. XIII
- Grace allows man to make some choices (even if they are wrong), but Holiness & Justice doesn’t allow man to chose the consequences for those choices
> so some day, God will mock the wicked:
 Psalm 2:4 He who sits in the heavens laughs, The Lord scoffs at them. 5 Then He will speak to them in His anger and terrify them in His fury, saying, 6 "But as for Me, I have installed My King Upon Zion, My holy mountain."
B.  Man’s anger seeks to bring shame.
 Matthew 27:31 After they had mocked Him, they took the scarlet robe off Him and put His own garments back on Him, and led Him away to crucify Him.
- he was forced to carry His own cross to the place of execution (heavy load for a strong man, let alone someone just scourged by a Roman soldier)
- it became so heavy, and the soldiers probably grew impatient with Jesus as he dragged His cross, that got Simon of Cyrene, and made him carry it
C.  Man’s anger flaunts the curse.
 Galatians 3:13 Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law, having become a curse for us -- for it is written, "CURSED IS EVERYONE WHO HANGS ON A TREE" --
- as if that wasn’t bad enough, this was not private act,
>  the Romans made sure that all crucifixions took place near heavily trafficked area where everyone could see
- Man in his self-righteousness and pride seeks to expose others – and they take joy and delight in knowing that someone else is being exposed, not them!
D.  Man’s anger promotes pain
[describe the crucifixion process of the nails, dropping the cross in the hole, the grasping for air, pushing up on the nails with His feet, the suffering – all this AFTER the scourging!
- but you know, it wasn’t just the PHYSICAL suffering that Jesus endured, it was the SPIRITUAL suffering – bearing the penalty of sin for all mankind (you and me!)
- as if that were not enough, ‘the most notable feature of this type of execution was the stigma of disgrace that was attached to it.”
E.  Man’s anger produces humiliation
 Matthew 27:41 In the same way the chief priests also, along with the scribes and elders, were mocking Him and saying, 42 "He saved others; He cannot save Himself. He is the King of Israel; let Him now come down from the cross, and we will believe in Him. 43 "HE TRUSTS IN GOD; LET GOD RESCUE Him now, IF HE DELIGHTS IN HIM; for He said, 'I am the Son of God."'
 the soldier parted His garments and gambled them away
 Pilate statement placed over Christ: “This is Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews”
 He was crucified between two thieves . . . and again, all this done PUBLICALLY to the SPOTLESS, SINLESS, Lamb of God!
Point: * The crucifixion was a corporate act of sinful humanity against God!
>  “I didn’t crucify Him” – we’re all guilty because it was our sin that nailed Him to the cross
- that was John the Baptist’s point is saying:
 John 1:29 The next day he saw Jesus coming to him and said, "Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!”
- listen to the words to a song my wife, Laurie wrote:  It Was My Sin, cf. www.delightmusic.com
Verse 1
I never knew the Christmas babe had come to the earth to die,
That one day He would choose to give His life.
Until today, it was a tale, a story to tell a child
But now I’m overwhelmed to realize --

Chorus
It was my sin that nailed Him to the cross,
It was my shame; He bore my blame at such loss,
Though so great a cost, His love was greater still,
He chose to give His very life on Calvary’s cross for my soul.

Verse 2
And now I know my eyes were blind, and I had believed a lie
That choosing my own way would bring me joy in life.
I want to share this truth I’ve learned – only Jesus can satisfy.
And out of love for me, He came to die.

Bridge
But now I clearly see He did it all for me
Such wondrous love, how can it be?

And now my love I’ll give
And all my days I’ll live
To praise and honor Him Who set me free.

II.  The Crucifixion Reveals Jesus’ Response


- I wish we had time to take a concentrated look at each one of these, but let me mention them:
- I like the way John MacArthur captured each one of these in his book, The Murder of Jesus:
A.  A Plea for Forgiveness:  “Father, forgive them for they do not know what they are doing.”
- it’s possible that these words were spoken while our Lord was being nailed to the cross, or as soon as it was lifted up and dropped into the hole – causing all His bones to be out of joint!
- this statement does not suggest that they were unaware that they were sinning, but rather that they did not understand the magnitude of their crime
- Paul wrote this:
 1 Corinthians 2:8 . . . for if they had understood it they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.
- so while man was crying out ‘Crucify Him” – Jesus cried out, “Father, forgive them.”
Note: This was not a blanket act of forgiveness – forgiveness is condition (upon repentance) – and besides, this was a prayer directly to the Father
J.C. Ryle wrote: “It is worthy of remark that as soon as the blood of the Great Sacrifice began to flow, the Great High Priest began to intercede.’
Q: Did the Father answer His prayer? YES – in a number of ways:
1) the conversion of the thief on the cross beside him – Luke 23:40-43)
2) the conversion of one of the soldiers (Luke 23:47)
3) the Day of Pentecost where , and later fulfilled at Pentecost when
B.  A Promise of Salvation: “Today, you will be with me in Paradise”
- while this theft started out mocking Christ, demonstrating his anger, he changed!
- later he rebuked the other thief and rightly said that they deserved what they were getting, but Jesus didn’t!
- what a great testimony to the security of the believer when we put our faith in Christ!
C.  A Provision for His Mother:  “Woman, behold your son” [John] “Behold your mother”
- even while suffering He fulfilled His responsibility of providing care for His mother (it’s very likely that this reveals the fact that Joseph was dead at this point)
D.  A Petition to the Father: “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”
“God forsaken of God, I can’t understand it” – Charles Spurgeon
Q: Why did God the Father do that?  Jesus claimed His Father sent Him was with Him, etc.?
 2 Corinthians 5:21 He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.
E.  A Pleading for Relief: “I thirst”
- this is a reference to His humanity – God clothed in human flesh was thirsty
- the writer of Hebrews would later write:
 Hebrews 4:15 For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. 16 Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
Point: Whatever your situation . . . Jesus fully understands it – He’s been there!
F.  A Proclamation of Victory: “It is finished”
- Luke added ‘with a loud voice’
- this is actually one word in the Greek:  Tetelestai – it is done, the price for redemption has been paid in full, there is nothing else that can be done to earn it – IT IS FINISHED!
- thank God for John 3:16
 John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.
- all your anger has been paid for . . . all your bitterness  . . . All your self-righteousness. . .
EVERY SIN THAT YOU HAVE EVER COMMITTED OR WILL COMMIT IS PAID IN FULL!
G.  A Prayer of Completion: “Father, into Your hands, I commit My spirit”
- this fulfilled what Jesus said:
 John 10:18 "No one has taken it away from Me, but I lay it down on My own initiative. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This commandment I received from My Father."
- if I could summarize all this, it would look something like this:
 Man’s response: Sinful anger, rejection, rebellion;
 God’s response: GRACE, MERCY, TRUTH, FORGIVENESS, UNCONDITIONAL LOVE, AND RESTORATION!
* IMPORTANT:  The crucifixion is not only the ultimate demonstration of man’s anger at God, it is the ultimate demonstration of God’s anger at man!
- I love the words to the song: In Christ Alone
In Christ alone! who took on flesh, fullness of God in helpless babe!
This gift of love and righteousness, scorned by the ones he came to save:
Till on that cross as Jesus died, the wrath of God was satisfied -
For every sin on Him was laid; here in the death of Christ I live.


III.  The Crucifixion Reveals the Final Conclusion: “Truly this was the Son of God”


Point: We have no right to be angry at God after all He has done for us!
* READ: The Murder of Christ, p. 7
In what sense was God please by the death of His Son?

He was pleased by the redemption that was accomplished.  He was pleased that His eternal plan of salvation was thus fulfilled.  He was pleased with the sacrifice of His Son, who died so that others might have eternal life.  He was pleased to display His righteous anger against sin in such a graphic way.  He was pleased to demonstrate His love for sinners through such a majestic sacrifice.

For all the evil in the crucifixion, it brought about an infinite good.  In fact, here was the most evil act ever perpetrated by sinful hearts:  The sinless Son of God – holy God Himself in human flesh – was unjustly killed after being subjected to the most horrific tortures that could be devised by wicked minds.  It was the evil of all evils, the worst deed human depravity could ever devise, and the most vile evil that has ever been committed.  And yet from it came the greatest good of all time – the redemption of unnumbered souls, and the demonstration of the glory of God as Savior.  Though the murderers meant evil against Christ, God meant it for good, in order to save many.

The Cross is therefore the ultimate proof of the utter sovereignty of God.  His purposes are always fulfilled in spite of the evil intentions of sinners.  God even works His righteousness through the evil acts of unrighteous agents.  Far from making Him culpable for their evil, this demonstrates how all He does is good, and how He is able to work all things together for good (Romans 8:28) – even the most wicked deed the powers of evil have ever conspired to carry out.
Q: So what do when we are angry with God?
A.  Recognize God for Who He is
- Jesus truly is the Son of God who died for our sin
- Jesus is the King of Kings, and the Lord of All
- He’s the Alpha and Omega, the Wonderful Counselor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, and the Prince of Peace
> Yes – He even wants you to settle the issue of your anger at Him
• He has all the grace you need, all the wisdom from His Word to direct
- but it starts with you seeing that He is holy and righteous, and cannot make a mistake
- when you see God as Holy, Just, righteous – you won’t be getting angry at Him!
B.  Recognize God for what He has done
- Creation – Redemption – just to name two (not to mention the Exodus, Red Sea, Jericho, David and Goliath, Daniel, 3 Hebrew guys thrown into the fire,
- not to mention the miracles of Christ He performed while on this earth!
C.  Recognize God for what He can do in your life
Ill: Keri losing her retainer – she prayed and asked for God’s help – we found it in the dumpster
Q: What does God want to give you that’s a whole lot bigger than a retainer?
- you might say, “Well, it worked out well for you because God answered your prayers.”
- True, and if He didn’t, then there were some lessons for my daughter to learn and some grace to be experienced, and some spiritual maturity to be developed in her life!
- my question to you is: How much more does God want to use your situation to help you bring glory to Him as He seeks to conform you to the image of His dear Son?
D.  Recognize God for what He is going to do
1.  Judgment Seat of Christ
 2 Corinthians 5:10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.
2.  Great White Throne – Rev. 20-12-15 – eternal judgment in hell forever
- there will be people in hell who are angry at God, but at that point, it will be too late to do anything about it!
3. Eternity – spent in the presence of God forever, and ever, the joys of Heaven!
Conclusion:
Explain the Gospel – 1st step of dealing with anger toward God is repentance
Believes: Have you forgotten the motivation that the cross can be to help you bring glory to God?
 Key Verse: Galatians 6:14 But may it never be that I would boast, except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.


Are You Mad at God?
John 18-19
Introduction:
 James 1:19 This you know, my beloved brethren. But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger; 20 for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God.
 Philippians 2:10 so that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
 John 8:59 Therefore they picked up stones to throw at Him . . .
Title: The Ultimate Act of Anger Toward God? (The Crucifixion of Christ)
  I.  The Crucifixion Reveals Man’s Anger: “Crucify Him!”
A.  Man’s anger _________ God.
No victim of injustice was ever more innocent than the sinless Son of God. And yet no one ever suffered more agony than He did.  He was cruelly executed by men who openly acknowledged His faultlessness.  Yet at the same time Barabbas, a murderous, thieving insurrectionist, was summarily set free.  It was the greatest travesty of justice the world will ever see.” – MacArthur, The Murder of Jesus, p. XIII

B.  Man’s anger seeks to bring ___________.

C.  Man’s anger flaunts the _________.

D.  Man’s anger promotes ___________

E.  Man’s anger produces ______________

* The crucifixion was a corporate act of sinful humanity against God!
Song: It Was My Sin

II.  The Crucifixion Reveals Jesus’ Response
A.  A Plea for ______________:  “Father, forgive
J.C. Ryle wrote: “It is worthy of remark that as soon as the blood of the Great Sacrifice began to flow, the Great High Priest began to intercede.’

B.  A Promise of _____________: “Today, you will be with me in Paradise”

C.  A _______________ for His Mother:  “Woman, behold your son” [John] “Behold your mother”

D.  A ______________ to the Father: “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”

E.  A Pleading for ___________: “I thirst”

F.  A Proclamation of ___________: “It is finished”

G.  A Prayer of _______________: “Father, into Your hands, I commit My spirit”

* IMPORTANT:  The crucifixion is not only the ultimate demonstration of man’s anger at God, it is the ultimate demonstration of God’s anger at man!

III.  The Crucifixion Reveals the Final Conclusion: “Truly this was the Son of God”
* The Murder of Christ, p. 7
Q: So what do when we are angry with God?
A.  Recognize God for _______________

B.  Recognize God for _____________________

C.  Recognize God for __________________ in your life
* How much more does God want to use your situation to help you bring glory to Him as He seeks to conform you to the image of His dear Son?

D.  Recognize God for __________________
1.  ________________________ – 2 Corinthians 5:10

2.  __________________ – Rev. 20-12-15

3. ______________

Conclusion:
 Key Verse: _____________________