July 28, 2013 – Read the Word on Worship
The world is continually looking for a sign or demonstration that meets their worldly criteria but that is the opposite of faith. Their attitude is show us and then we will believe but they will never see enough for them to believe. Faith is trusting to the point of death, not seeing enough to believe. The centurion stands in stark contrast to those who shouted to Jesus for a sign to prove He was the Son of God. God demonstrated power over Rome, the religious leaders, the fickle crowds and the demonic hosts by the humiliation of the cross and reverses the reversal which occurred when man was forced the Garden of Eden.
Join us this week as we examine the crucifixion of the Lord Jesus Christ from Mark 15 verses 22 to 47 in Pastor Kikkert’s sermon, “The Reversal of the Reversal”
Word On Worship – July 28, 2013 Download / Print
“And Jesus uttered a loud cry, and breathed His last. 38 And the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. When the centurion, who was standing right in front of Him, saw the way He breathed His last, he said, “Truly this man was the Son of God!”
In his excellent book The Six Pillars of Biblical Power, John Rankin wrote about the reversal of the reversal. In God’s infinite power, He gave glorious gifts such as life, the created world and the ability to love. Yet when His creation soiled themselves by their sin (the reversal) to take what was not theirs, God’s love gave even more to redeem and restore His creation (the reversal of the reversal). I can think of no better picture of this than the centurion at the foot of the cross. Christ’s faithful obedience to His Father, even in death — not wondrous works of power or majesty — converted the executioner.
In a single moment, the centurion’s world view that governed his life changed. He had sworn allegiance to Caesar and was the physical representation of Roman power in Israel. To the Romans, power was the defining characteristic of deity and the title “Son of God” could only belong to Caesar, the embodiment of Rome’s power and majesty. This centurion never saw any of the prior miracles of Jesus or heard any of His teachings. Yet in Christ’s death, this soldier saw who Jesus Christ was and what it meant to be the Son of God. Divinity was no longer associated with the might of a leader to impose his will, but with humble obedience that transforms lives.
There was one thing the centurion saw in the crucifixion of our Lord that likely reversed his view of Jesus. As a soldier, he understood the necessity of absolute obedience. As another centurion told Jesus in Matthew 8, he understood what authority was and what that meant when orders were given. In the final hours of Jesus this centurion witnessed the Son of God carrying out His mission from the Father in absolute obedience. As bystanders ourselves, we need to reverse our false view of the true nature of divinity and power to see that at its core is obedience.
The world is continually looking for a sign or demonstration that meets worldly criteria. But that is the opposite of faith. The world’s attitude is show us and then we will believe – but they will never see enough for them to believe. Faith is trusting to the point of death, not seeing enough to believe. The centurion stands in stark contrast to those who shouted to Jesus for a sign to prove He was the Son of God. God demonstrated power over Rome, the religious leaders, the fickle crowds and the demonic hosts by the humiliation of the cross and reversed the reversal which occurred when man was forced out of the Garden of Eden.