Please find our sermons below:

The Cruxifiction

Mark 15:21-39, Stephen Clarke, April 8, 2018

Sermon Notes:


  • Focusing on v33-34, v38-39
  • The media shows us so much of the worlds horrors
  • The gospel writers are remarkably restrained 
    • Crucifixion was a horrific thing
    • v20, 24-25: little detail provided
    • The writers focus on other matters which take us to the heart of the events
  • Three central matters of the cross and the Christian Gospel
    • Two outcomes:
    • You will know what the Christian message is
      • We need spiritual understanding
    • To be reminded of the cross
  • Overview:
    • The Darkness (v33)
    • The Cry of Desolation (v34)
    • The Destruction (v38)

The Darkness (v33)

  • Darkness over the land at 12-3pm
    • Darkness at the brightest time of day
    • Darkness over the whole land of Israel
    • Darkness at a time of year you would not get an eclipse
  • What does the darkness mean?
    • Amos 8:9
      • An act of judgment upon the people for their sin
      • A picture of final judgment
        • Not a lost eternity but an eternal blackness of outer darkness
        • Conscious of the eternal fact that God is displeased and angry with them
        • A plight too dreadful to contemplate
      • Are we out of step with our Christian forebears?
        • Have we become immunised to the plight of those around us?
    • Exodus
      • Darkness of the penultimate plague
      • A darkness that could be felt
      • A darkness that fell upon all people (including Jesus)
      • A darkness fell upon Jesus (v34)
        • A real darkness
        • No deliverance

The Cry of Desolation (v34)

  • This cry reveals what Jesus has been experiencing internally
  • Psalm 22:1
    • Example - David felt forsaken by God, but he was not, Job hit such a point
    • The Lords people can feel abandoned
    • However, God never forsakes His people
      • Examples - Daniel
  • Jesus is absolutely alone
    • He feels utterly forsaken
    • It is not a cry of despair and unbelief
    • It is a cry of faith, "My God, My God"
    • Not a rhetorical question or question for information - a lament
    • Poem by Elizabeth Browning
    • Quote of Hymn
  • The gospel writers have not given us the gory details since they are communicating the severity of the spiritual situation
    • Explanation
    • The blood of Jesus Christ cleanses from all sin
    • The assurance of sins forgiven

The Destruction (v38)

  • The veil of the temple was torn in two after Jesus breathed His last
    • Explanation of the Most Holy Place
      • Keep out!
      • It was dangerous for sinners to come into contact with God
    • The way is now open to go into the Most Holy Place
    • The way is now open to God
      • God says, "Come"
      • Christ's blood and righteousness clothes us
      • 2 Cor 5:21
      • Ps 22:30-31
    • Our access to God is based on the finished work of Christ
  • The beginning of the end of the temple (v29-30)
    • He was previously talking about His body
    • Because He is the temple, the temple is coming to an end
  • We meet God through Jesus Christ - He has opened the way
    • There are no longer any sacred places
    • There is no longer any sacred land
    • There are no longer special people in terms of access to God
    • All Christians are saints and priests (though there are difference offices)

Sermon Passage:

Mark 15:21-39

21And they compel one Simon a Cyrenian, who passed by, coming out of the country, the father of Alexander and Rufus, to bear his cross. 22And they bring him unto the place Golgotha, which is, being interpreted, The place of a skull. 23And they gave him to drink wine mingled with myrrh: but he received it not. 24And when they had crucified him, they parted his garments, casting lots upon them, what every man should take. 25And it was the third hour, and they crucified him. 26And the superscription of his accusation was written over, THE KING OF THE JEWS. 27And with him they crucify two thieves; the one on his right hand, and the other on his left. 28And the scripture was fulfilled, which saith, And he was numbered with the transgressors. 29And they that passed by railed on him, wagging their heads, and saying, Ah, thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days, 30Save thyself, and come down from the cross. 31Likewise also the chief priests mocking said among themselves with the scribes, He saved others; himself he cannot save. 32Let Christ the King of Israel descend now from the cross, that we may see and believe. And they that were crucified with him reviled him. 33And when the sixth hour was come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour. 34And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? 35And some of them that stood by, when they heard it, said, Behold, he calleth Elias. 36And one ran and filled a spunge full of vinegar, and put it on a reed, and gave him to drink, saying, Let alone; let us see whether Elias will come to take him down. 37And Jesus cried with a loud voice, and gave up the ghost. 38And the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom. 39And when the centurion, which stood over against him, saw that he so cried out, and gave up the ghost, he said, Truly this man was the Son of God. (KJV)

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