Theme: The cross-God's solutions for man's problem.

Introductory Remarks:

"Years I spent in vanity and pride
Caring not my Lord was crucified
Knowing not it was for me He died
On Calvary.

Mercy there was great and grace was free
Pardon there was multiplied to me
There my burdened soul found liberty
At Calvary." 1

The congregation had risen to its feet and hundreds of voices blended together in song, filling the sanctuary with the timeless story of Calvary, the cross, and the crucified Savior.

As I joined my voice with theirs, I thought of how many years ago it was when I first heard that story told to me. It had moved me deeply back then and even as I sang about it in that old hymn of the church, I was moved again in my spirit. It's a simple story that even a child can grasp and yet it's so profound that even the angels of heaven have not yet fathomed it's depth of meaning.
(I Peter 1:10-12.) It has been called the Story of Stories, The Greatest Story Ever Told. It's a story that never grows old and the repeated telling of it through the years has never diminished its truth in any way. It's study has never been exhausted, for no human mind is big enough or broad enough to understand it in its entirety. It's a story that stands unequaled in history. It's the story of the cross.

Today, I want us to hear Matthews version of that precious old story again, as it is recorded in the gospel bearing his name. As we hear it told, it is my prayer that Calvary's crucifixion scene will once again come alive to us, and that our hearts will be touched one more time by 
" The Message of the Cross."

Text: Matthew 27:27-54, (NIV).
The Judgment Hall: verses 27 - 31,
"Then the governor's soldiers took Jesus into the Praetorium and gathered the whole company of soldiers around Him. They stripped him and put a scarlet robe on him, And then twisted together a crown of thorns and set it on his head. They put a staff in his right hand and knelt in front of him and mocked him, "Hail, king of the Jews!" They said. They spit on him, and took the staff and struck him on the head again and again. After they had mocked him, they took off the robe and put his own clothes on him. Then they led him away to crucify him."


1 D. B. Towner, Wm R. Newell

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