Text: Luke 23:22 to 25 (Lord’s Supper service)
Reading: Luke 23: 1-25
In previous Lord’s Supper sermons we’ve discussed portions of the form:
“There he was bound that he might free us from our sins.”
“He suffered countless insults that we might never be put to shame.”
Now we’ll focus on:
“Though innocent, he was condemned to death that we might be acquitted at the judgement seat of God.”
Jesus was proclaimed innocent seven times, by seven different people:
1. The high priest and Sanhedrin (Matt 26:57ff). When Jesus’ trial began they were looking for false evidence so that they could put him to death, but they couldn’t find any though many false witnesses came forward. They knew Jesus was innocent.
2. Judas, who betrayed him (Matt 27:4) said, “I have sinned in betraying innocent blood.”
3. Pilate was relieved that Jesus belonged to Herod’s jurisdiction, but Herod could not condemn him. (Luke 23:15) Herod found no basis for the charges against him.
4. Pilate’s wife (Matt 27:19) sent a message telling Pilate, “Don’t have anything to do with that innocent man.”
5. Pilate himself declared Jesus innocent.
6. One of the criminals crucified with him (Luke 23:39ff) said he had done nothing wrong.
7. The centurion said that surely this was a righteous man. (Luke 23:47)
These are the human testimonies to Jesus’ innocence. The Lord God also testified to Christ’s innocence by raising him from the dead (Acts 2:24). It was impossible for death to hold onto him because he was innocent. Thus the Holy Spirit vindicated Jesus.
Why did Jesus die if he was innocent? Because our sins were placed upon him. He was put to death for our sins. Therefore confess your sins. Jesus died that we might live with him in perfection. Not only is Jesus ‘not guilty’. He is also innocent, a much deeper and broader quality. We are also innocent, but only in Christ.
Sermon by Pastor George on July 8, 2012. Notes, errors, and omissions by NPS.