Sermon for Good Friday – 3.29.24

+ Good Friday – March 29th, 2024 +

Series B: Isaiah 52:13-53:12; Psalm 22; Hebrews 4-5; John 18-19

Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church

Milton, WA

 

“Numbered with the Transgressors”

 

In the Name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

 

There have been many weeks in the history of the world. There have been about 103,688 weeks since the first Good Friday. Holy Week is the greatest week in all the weeks of history since the first week in Genesis. Not since the 7th day when the Lord God rested from all his labors had there been an 8 days like these 8 days we call Holy Week. The Great Week. The week leading up to the day leading up to the hours on a Friday afternoon outside Jerusalem, when Jesus was numbered with the transgressors.

 

There are 39 books in the Old Testament; 27 in the New Testament. There are 1,042 pages in the Scriptures. Ever book, every prophet and apostle, every page of every one of these books, in one way or another, is a testimony of Christ who saves sinners and dwells with sinners…for Good Friday Jesus was numbered with the transgressors.

 

On Good Friday the truth is inescapable: Christ dwells only among sinners. And this is the way it has been since his birth for you. For this reason he descended from heaven, where he dwelt among the righteous, to dwell among sinners. This is why we call Good Friday “good.” Meditate on this love of his and you will see his sweet consolation. The good news of Good Friday is that Jesus dwells only among sinners. That Jesus was numbered with the transgressors. And he did this for you.

 

Long ago, Isaiah the prophet foretold this good news of Good Friday.

 

But he was pierced for our transgressions;
    he was crushed for our iniquities;
upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace,
    and with his wounds we are healed.

because he poured out his soul to death
    and was numbered with the transgressors;
yet he bore the sin of many,
    and makes intercession for the transgressors.

 

And what Isaiah foretold, Jesus fulfilled. When Jesus began his public ministry, was known for eating and drinking with tax collectors and sinners. Sinners like Matthew. Zacchaeus. And many, many more. Sinners like you. Like me. As Jesus traveled around Judea and in the homes, and at the table of Jew and Gentile alike, he was numbered with the transgressors. Jesus quickly gained a reputation.

 

When the Pharisees saw that he was eating with sinners and tax collectors, said to his disciples, “Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners?”  And when Jesus heard it, he said to them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.”

 

This is the good news of Good Friday. That Christ dwells only among sinners.

 

Jesus was numbered with the transgressors.

When Jesus told his parables of the lost coin and the lost sheep and the two lost sons in Luke 15, Luke tells us how the tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to hear him. And the Pharisees and the scribes grumbled, saying, “This man receives sinners and eats with them.”

 

The Pharisees meant that as an insult, but it’s not. It’s the truth. And it was incredibly good news for those who had ears to hear. And it still is. “This man receives sinners and eats with them.” Thank the Lord he did…and still does! Jesus was numbered with the transgressors. Amen! He was for you.

 

For if Christ does not dwell with sinners, we are without hope. Lost. Alone. Dead. End of story.

 

But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Jesus dies for you, not when you have it all together, but when you’re completely broken and falling apart. Jesus rescues you not when you’ve been good little sheep following the shepherd, but when we, like sheep have gone astray. Jesus went to the cross to redeem and rescue you not on your best day, but at your worst. Yes, our sin is great, but Jesus is a greater Savior than you are a sinner.

 

This is the good news of Good Friday. Christ dwells only among sinners. Jesus was numbered with the transgressors…for you, and for all your transgressions.

 

When Jesus entered into Jerusalem, he was numbered with the transgressors who shouted Hosanna! Blessed is he comes in the name of the Lord!

 

When Jesus was in the upper room with the disciples, he was numbered with the transgressors who – to the man – denied that they would deny him. And yet he took the bread and the cup and gave them – as he gives you – his body and blood for your forgiveness.

 

When Jesus was praying in Gethsemane, he was numbered with the transgressors who fell asleep as he prayed, who betrayed him, who arrested him, who hauled him off to trial in the wee hours of the night.

 

When Jesus was brought before Pilate and Herod and the crowds he was numbered with the transgressors as they cried out: “Crucify him! Crucify him!”

 

When Jesus finally made his way to the cross, there once again, and up on the hill for all the world to see, Jesus is numbered with the transgressors. For you. Two criminals on the cross, one on each side, and all the world’s transgressions – yours and mine – there with him. And there, God made him who knew no sin so that in Jesus you would become the righteousness of God. There, Jesus was numbered with the transgressors…for you. He was lifted up on the cross for you. He was crucified for you. He cried out, “it is finished” for you. He bowed his head for you. He gave up his spirit for you. He was taken down from the cross, laid in the tomb, and rested on the 7th day for you.

 

It is good news on this Good Friday…that Christ dwells among sinners. And it is good news that we will hear again on the third day. That Christ rose from the dead for sinners. That Christ lives and reigns for sinners. And that now and every day until Christ returns or he calls us home, Christ dwells among sinners.

 

 

A blessed Good Friday to each of you…

 

In the Name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

 

Beautiful Savior

is a traditional Lutheran Church, faithful to God's Word and His Sacraments. We equip God's people to serve, love, and encourage one another as we grow in our personal relationship with Christ. We reach out to the community as beacons of light, sharing the love of God in Christ Jesus, our Savior.

Church Office Hours

Monday - Thursday 8:30am-3:30pm

Friday 8:30am-11:30am

The office is closed on Fridays during the summer months of June, July, and August.

Preschool Office Hours

August - May
Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday
8:30am-12:30pm

By appointment only June and July

Contact

Address
2306 Milton Way
Milton, WA 98354
Phone
(253) 922-6977
Fax
(253) 922-6977