The Glory of God in the Passion of Jesus Christ
· Isaiah 52:13—53:12
· Acts 2:22-36; 4:23-28
· Ephesians 1:3-14; 1 Peter 1:17-21
· John 10:1-18; 12:27-33; 13:31-32; 17:1-5
· Matthew 26:36-46; Philippians 2:5-11
· John 3:14-15; 7:32, 45-46; 8:28, 59; 10:31; 11:53, 57; 12:31, 34; 18:31-32; Matthew 26:2-5; Luke 4:28-30; 18 31-33
· Romans 3:21-28; 8:32
· Revelation 5:1-14
Setting the Stage for this Study
This week Mel Gibson’s The Passion of Jesus Christ will be released, and will be viewed by thousands, perhaps even millions, of people in the next few months. I have not yet seen this film, but I am hopeful that God may choose to use it to save many. I do have some concerns. First, this film deals with only 12 hours of our Lord’s life, and therefore it can hardly focus on the causes, purposes, and apostolic interpretation of our Lord’s death at Calvary. Because of this we have ordered a significant quantity of John Piper’s book, The Passion of Jesus Christ. We have made every effort to see to it that these books will be here on Sunday, February 29. Secondly, I fear that there may be too much attention drawn to the physical torture and sufferings of our Lord – attention to details which the Scriptures themselves do not emphasize. Jesus may therefore appear to be the victim, not the Victor. To put it differently, I am concerned that this portrayal may not sufficiently emphasize the fact that the death of Christ on the cross of Calvary was a manifestation of the glory of God. In this lesson, I wish to call attention to the ways in which the Passion of Jesus Christ glorified God.
How does this great passage in Isaiah call attention to the glory of God in the passion of our Lord?
Acts 2:22-36; 4:23-28
How did the apostles understand the suffering and death of the Lord Jesus as glorifying God?
Ephesians 1:3-14; 1 Peter 1:17-21
What are the effects of the passion of our Lord that glorify God?
John 10:1-18; 12:27-33; 13:31-32; 17:1-5
How does Jesus relate His death on the cross to the glory of God?
Matthew 26:36-46; Philippians 2:5-11
What relationship do you see between this text in the Gospel of Matthew and Paul’s words in Philippians chapter 2? According to these passages how did our Lord’s suffering and death and resurrection glorify God?
John 3:14-15; 7:32, 45-46; 8:28, 59; 10:31; 11:53, 57; 12:31, 34; 18:31-32;
Matthew 26:2-5; Luke 4:28-30; 18 31-33
All of these texts have to do with the timing, manner, and human instrumentality of our Lord’s death. If Jesus had died when and how the Jews had preferred, when and how would that have been? How did the death of our Lord on the cross of Calvary (rather than by some other means of execution), at the time of the feast of Passover, at the hands of both Jews and Gentiles, glorify God?
Romans 3:21-28; 8:32
According to Paul’s words in Romans 3:21-28, what did the death, burial, and resurrection of our Lord accomplish? Why did this eliminate boasting (3:27-28)? How did this glorify God?
How does the death of our Lord call attention to His glory in Revelation chapter 5?
Questions for Further Thought and Discussion
Does the reenactment of the crucifixion of our Lord (in films, dramatic presentations, and the communion rituals of some churches) display the glorify God?
Are we as the church instructed to reenact the passion of our Lord every Sunday?
As we talk with people about the movie, The Passion of the Christ, what should we say about the death of Christ that will call men’s attention to the glory to God?
How can we use the movie, The Passion of the Christ, as a witnessing opportunity? What questions might you ask those who have seen the movie? What questions might they have for you?