Which Side Are You On? by James Merritt

Which Side are You On?
James Merritt
Luke 23:33,39-43

INTRODUCTION

1. The universal symbol of the Christian faith is the cross, the old rugged cross. The empty tomb may be the foundation of Christianity, but the cross is the focus of Christianity. When we think of the place called Calvary; when we think of that "hill far away" in our mind's eye we can picture the cross upon which Jesus died.

2. But too often we forget there was not just one cross that day. There were three. "And when they had come to the place called Calvary, there they crucified Him, AND THE CRIMINALS, one on the right hand and the other on the left." (v.33) There was more than one cross, and there was more than one crucifixion. There was a cross of redemption, but there was also a cross of reception and a cross of rejection.

3. Someone has observed that Jesus did not die in a cathedral between two candles. He died on a cross between two criminals. Three men died that day on a cross. One was a benefactor, one was a blasphemer, one was a believer. One was a Savior, one was a sinner, and one was a saint. One man died for sin. Another man died in sin. The third man died to sin.

4. Now the fact that a Holy Savior died between hopeless sinners was not just an accident. It was an appointment. This was a fulfillment of prophecy for Isaiah had said 750 years before about the Messiah "And He was numbered with the transgressors, And He bore the sin of many, And made intercession for the transgressors." (Isaiah 53:12b)

5. Before this world was even created, God had made an appointment in his calendar for the Savior to meet these sinners and for these sinners to meet the Savior. Two men died that day. One man died on the wrong side of Jesus. One man died on the right side of Jesus. Friend, when the day comes that you die, the only question that will really matter is: which side are you on?

6. Now both men were on the wrong side of Jesus, but one man got on th ...


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