Why Did Jesus Have to Come?
Topic: Why Did Jesus Have to Come?
Sermon Title: Why Did Jesus Have to Come?
Sermon Series: Advent 2020
Text: Supporting Scripture
Speaker: Pastor Damian Mericka
- Introduction: Reminded of the Gospel (1 Corinthians 15:1-11)
Paul is writing to believers in the City of Corinth, addressing the many questions that have made their way from them to Paul. This community of faith was explosive in growth and vibrancy, and the Kingdom potential they had within the city was extraordinary. However, they were going through some growing pains.
Having parishioners who have come out of Judaism (Jewish) or Pagan Cults (Gentiles), many were struggling to not bring their former methods of worship into the community of Christ. As Believers they had the gifting of the Spirit, but not the maturity to submit to the Spirit for the over all benefit of the church. After addressing the divisive use of gifts such as tongues or prophecy, Paul urges the congregation to hold the exercise of the gifting to the standard of Scriptural authority. (See -> 1 Corinthians 14:36-40)
It is then that Paul hits a reset button- it is time to be reminded of the Gospel. Central to who we are in God’s family, and the gifting from God’s hand, comes the will of God to save us from our sin. The centrality of the Gospel cannot be overstated enough by any pulpit; it is the recalibration needed to keep everything about Jesus and not ourselves.
The most important part of the Gospel message is that Jesus came to die for our sins, in accordance with the Scriptures. Resurrection is the heartbeat that makes salvation a living invitation for each of us. Without sharing that Jesus died for our sin, we have not shared the Gospel. Without an acknowledgment of ownership that we are sinners and repenting (turning away from our sin), we have not responded to the Gospel. Without letting go of all hope outside of the Person and Work of Jesus, trusting in His Salvation to be our right standing with God alone, we have not received the Gospel. If Jesus is only a part of our life, and not our total life- His Word our very sustenance, we are not living the Gospel life. This reality is what drove Paul to live his life committed to the Gospel of Jesus Christ! (Vv.8-11)
We celebrate the Christmas season with family and friends, doing life with neighbors, coworkers, and acquaintances. It is important to remember and keep central to our witness in word and demonstration through our lives, the answer to the question, why did Jesus have to come?
Going Deeper: 1) Why did Paul need to remind the church in Corinth about the Gospel? How important was it to Paul to keep the Gospel central not only in our own lives personally, but collectively as well in the church? What is sharing, responding, receiving, and living the Gospel? What is central to the Gospel?
- The Curse of Sin (Genesis 3:7-22)
If the center of the Gospel is the death and resurrection of Jesus, the question for us today is why did He have to die?
In the beginning of humanity’s story, we find Satan, as the serpent, with great subtly persuading the woman and then Adam to choose to disobey God. Sin existed before this; but Genesis is concerned with telling us our story. Once sin became a part of our lives, our morality was no longer in alignment with God’s Holiness and we began a descent from God that continues onward today.
They attempted to cover their sin with fig leaves (v.7), hid from God (v.8), and had to be called by God to come and give account of what has happened (Vv.9-10). In his response, Adam points the finger to the woman (indirectly at God), she then to the Serpent (Vv.11-13).
God proceeds to curse the following:
- Satan / Serpent (v.14) -> Note: Revelation 20:2
- Dust / Waterless places (Luke 11:24 & 1 Peter 5:8)
- Awaiting Judgment -> Revelation 20:10
- The Earth (Vv.17-19)
- Awaiting Deliverance -> Romans 8:18-21
But what about Humanity- are we cursed because of sin?
In Genesis 3:15 God reveals two seeds that will spring from the woman; one will go in the direction of Satan, the other in the direction of God. This is the introduction of the Gospel. As Satan had tempted the woman to turn away from God to the Devil, God would put enmity (hate) between the two seeds, shattering their unholy alliance. God is revealing a Sovereign Grace that would turn the woman and her seed back to Himself through repentance and faith.
It was after this promise that Adam named the woman Eve, the mother of the living. Amidst the verdict of death, Adam and Eve embrace the promise of life God brings them!
God’s curse falls upon humanity because of sin. We incur this curse because we are sinners (Romans 3:23). When we choose to turn from God’s invitation of Grace, we embrace this curse (Genesis 4:11), affirming that we are the seed of Satan (1 John 3:10-14), awaiting his judgment (Matthew 25:41).
But how would this Grace become available for the seed of woman?
Genesis 3:21 -> through atonement. The killing of the innocent to cover the guilty, a substitution. While God promised this hope through the offspring of Eve, it would require a Divine Intervention (v.22)!
Going Deeper: 2) What and whom did God curse? What is Satan / demons / sin awaiting? What is the earth awaiting? How do we fall under the curse? What was the Gospel God shared? What did it cost God? When did Adam name Eve, and what does it mean?
III. The Impact of Sin (Romans 1-3)
Sin does not get better with time, nor does it go away on its own.
In Paul’s letter to the Roman believers, he spends the first three chapters showing that sin is a real problem that touches everyone- no one is closer to God than the other outside of His Grace!
- Chapter One -> It’s a Global Problem (1:18-32) bearing fruit contrary to God’s design.
- Chapter Two -> It’s a Jewish Problem (2:3-11) Hypocrisy / Law was to guide not save!
- Chapter Three -> We all stand guilty before a Holy God and are without excuse (3:19-20)
Left on our own, we are beyond any hope of escaping the judgment upon sin and the Devil (Jeremiah 17:7-10). Outside of God’s Substitutionary Atonement, there is no hope for any of us.
Going Deeper: 3) How does Romans 1 show sin to be a global problem? Does sin go away on its own, or get any better? How does Romans 2 show sin is a Jewish problem as well? How does Romans 3 lead us all to stand silent and without excuse before God, our Creator and Judge? How wicked are our hearts? Who searches them?
- Substitutionary Atonement (Leviticus 17:11)
Hope is wonderful- it is an undeserved gift God brings us right at the beginning of our story. While it is salvation for us, it is condemnation for another. There is a cost that must be paid for sin to be truly judged and removed.
The Day of Atonement (Leviticus 16) was an annual event designated by God where the High Priest would oversee the hands of the worshiper being placed over the animal to be sacrificed. In this personal identification, the animal would die to transfer life to the worshiper.
Leviticus 17:11. It is the shedding of blood upon the altar that atones for us; the death of one to give life to another.
There are two incredibly significant things that take place with this act:
- Expiation -The payment of what is owed. We have sinned against our Creator.
- Propitiation -The appeasement of the offended party. God’s Wrath in response to our sin is satisfied.
This Substitutionary Atonement is what allowed hope to come into people’s lives. It is what allowed the curse upon creation to be reversed and His Blessings be upon them. Particularly Israel: in a restored relationship with God His love would flow in and fruit out into all the world offering His Grace through repentance and faith. The problem is that the sacrificial system was a temporary shadow; a promissory note that still would ultimately need to be paid.
Going Deeper: 4) What is Substitutionary Atonement? What was the day of atonement? What is expiation and propitiation? What does Leviticus 17:11 mean and what role does that play in atoning for sin? Why was this an annual event?
- Why Jesus Had to Come (Hebrews 10:1-18)
This was always God’s plan. (10:1-14)
Every promise God makes to us is anchored in Jesus. Every act of Atonement in the Old Testament only ever had value because of Jesus. You and I today only have salvation through Jesus.
Jesus affirms this in Hebrews 10:5, as He stepped into this world to take away sin. An angel of the Lord confirmed this was the child in Mary to Joseph in Matthew 1:20-23, and John the Baptist prepared people for Him in John 1:29 -> He who would take away the sin of the world!
We are eternally Substitutionally Atoned for through Jesus (10:15-18)
Jesus paid our debt to our Creator (expiation) and appeased His wrath against us by enduring it on our behalf (propitiation).
Mary held in her arms the child that was promised to come through our first mother, Eve.
The Mother of life.
Jesus came to pay for sin and restore us in relationship to the Father.
This is the reason Jesus came.
Let us worship God by sharing the full Gospel- the full message of Jesus coming into our world
“Through him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that acknowledge his name.
Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are please to God.” -Hebrews 13:15-16 ESV
Going Deeper: 5) What was God’s plan the whole time to take care of sin? Without Jesus would there be any hope, any joy, and love, any good in the world? What was the reason Jesus had to come? How central is this to the Gospel message? How clearly seen and shared is this in your own witness to family and friends, especially during this holiday season? Will you take the challenge: If you have a social media account, share your salvation story whether written or video recorded- boldly declare that Jesus paid for your sin and share the Good News that His offer of Salvation can be for any who will turn from sin and receive Him in faith!
More in Advent 2020
December 27, 2020Jesus Was Always God’s Plan!