The last in a series of 6 sermons
‘God in Christ’s death on the cross for us, has shown us incredible mercy… In view of this mercy how then should we live?’
Readings reproduced on this page:
The Holy Bible: New International Version. 1996, 1984. Grand Rapids: Zondervan
Matthew 27:27–54 (NIV84)
27Then the governor’s soldiers took Jesus into the Praetorium and gathered the whole company of soldiers around him.
28They stripped him and put a scarlet robe on him,
29and then twisted together a crown of thorns and set it on his head. They put a staff in his right hand and knelt in front of him and mocked him. “Hail, king of the Jews!” they said.
30They spit on him, and took the staff and struck him on the head again and again.
31After they had mocked him, they took off the robe and put his own clothes on him. Then they led him away to crucify him.
32As they were going out, they met a man from Cyrene, named Simon, and they forced him to carry the cross.
33They came to a place called Golgotha (which means The Place of the Skull).
34There they offered Jesus wine to drink, mixed with gall; but after tasting it, he refused to drink it.
35When they had crucified him, they divided up his clothes by casting lots.
36And sitting down, they kept watch over him there.
37Above his head they placed the written charge against him: this is jesus, the king of the jews.
38Two robbers were crucified with him, one on his right and one on his left.
39Those who passed by hurled insults at him, shaking their heads
40and saying, “You who are going to destroy the temple and build it in three days, save yourself! Come down from the cross, if you are the Son of God!”
41In the same way the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the elders mocked him.
42“He saved others,” they said, “but he can’t save himself! He’s the King of Israel! Let him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in him.
43He trusts in God. Let God rescue him now if he wants him, for he said, ‘I am the Son of God.’ ”
44In the same way the robbers who were crucified with him also heaped insults on him.
45From the sixth hour until the ninth hour darkness came over all the land.
46About the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?”—which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”
47When some of those standing there heard this, they said, “He’s calling Elijah.”
48Immediately one of them ran and got a sponge. He filled it with wine vinegar, put it on a stick, and offered it to Jesus to drink.
49The rest said, “Now leave him alone. Let’s see if Elijah comes to save him.”
50And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit.
51At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook and the rocks split.
52The tombs broke open and the bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life.
53They came out of the tombs, and after Jesus’ resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many people.
54When the centurion and those with him who were guarding Jesus saw the earthquake and all that had happened, they were terrified, and exclaimed, “Surely he was the Son of God!”
Romans 12:1–8 (NIV84)
1Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship.
2Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
3For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you.
4Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function,
5so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.
6We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith.
7If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach;
8if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully.
Hebrews 10:19–25 (NIV84)
19Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus,
20by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body,
21and since we have a great priest over the house of God,
22let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.
23Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.
24And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.
25Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.