The Supreme Sacrifice

Scripture: John 3:16, Acts 16:31, John 3:14-15
Date: 10/19/2021 
God promised Abraham that through his son all the nations of this world would be blessed. When God asked Abraham to sacrifice Isaac - the son of promise - He provided a ram to be sacrificed in Isaac's place. In the same way, God gave His Son to stand in our place as a sacrifice for sin.

The High Cost of the Cross - Paper or Digital PDF

The High Cost of the Cross - Paper or Digital PDF
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Doug Batchelor: Can you imagine stepping into the line of fire on a battlefield to save your enemy? On November 12, 1944, German Lieutenant Friedrich Lengfeld heard the desperate cries of a wounded American soldier who had been shot down in the midst of a German minefield. He ordered his men not to fire upon any rescuers, but as time slipped by, no Allied medics came to the aid of the injured man. That's when Lengfeld decided to help the enemy soldier himself. After organizing a rescue squad, he stepped out into the danger to assist his enemy, but he never got very far. He was injured by an exploding mine and died several hours later.

In 1994, a group of American veterans erected a memorial to honor his act of self-sacrifice. It's always moving when we hear about people who risked their lives to help a stranger in need. But, you know, Jesus risked much more to save his enemies when he came to this world, even knowing that he'd be hated, rejected, and persecuted, and ultimately killed, did not hinder him. Why? What was the motivation? Join me now as we take a deeper look at this transformational subject.

Tonight's presentation is among the most important, and it's dealing with the subject of The Supreme Sacrifice. You know, this is what we're going to do tonight is we're going to spend some time beholding the Lamb, and it is a prophetic theme. Now, some people come to a seminar like this and say, "Pastor Doug, I didn't come to talk about Jesus and salvation. I want to understand prophecy. I want to know about the beast and the Antichrist and Armageddon and 666. Let's study those things."

Well, you know, this is the theme of prophecy. If you look in Revelation chapter 5, it talks about a Lamb that had been slain that's in the midst of the throne. And throughout the book of Revelation, Jesus is referred to the Lamb and unless we know who that Lamb is, you know, we are going to miss out on everything. The purpose of all Bible prophecy is redemptive. The purpose of all Bible prophecy is redemptive. God's prophecies are not just to entertain us that He can foretell the future. The reason He has these prophecies is so that we can be saved.

What good is it to you if you understand what the beast is and 666 and the Antichrist and mark of the beast, and you even know the date and the hour of Christ's coming, if you're not saved, what good does that do you? What good is it if you gain the whole world and lose your soul? You might think, "Well, I just, you know, I want this knowledge." Well, the devil knows more than anybody here, it's not going to save him. What you ultimately need to know is Jesus, a relationship with Him. All the prophecies are pointing towards that. So, we're not really being honest or fair with you if we're just teaching Bible trivia and prophecy trivia, and we're not talking about the central theme of prophecy, which is Christ.

Now, when you open the book of Revelation, who knows what the first line in Revelation says? The revelation of the Antichrist? The revelation of the beast? The revelation of Armageddon? Millennium? Secret rapture to witnesses? They're all in the book, but that's not what it's talking about. It's the revelation of Jesus Christ. And in the first chapter, Jesus appears, and He's being revealed in these prophecies. So tonight, we're going to be talking about what the prophecies have to say about Jesus. Is Jesus the only way to be saved and importance of eternal life? And what is salvation?

First question. "Why was it necessary for Jesus to die?" You read in Romans chapter 3, verse 23, "For all have sinned," everybody's sinned. See, sin is deadly and it's contagious. In fact, this planet has been pretty much quarantined from the rest of the cosmos, the universe, because we've got a deadly disease. You can just see that sin hurts. Sin hurts you, sin hurts your neighbor, sin hurts God, and sin is selfishness, and it just basically self-destructs. And the end result of sin is death. The penalty for sin is death.

You might be thinking, "Well, then why aren't we dead yet, since we've all sinned?" Because through the sacrifice of Jesus, He not only bought the opportunity for people to find everlasting life, but every person has been provided with probationary time. The Lord has bought us an extension to make a different choice. He's bought us probationary time to say, "I don't want to live for myself. I want to live for God."

Penalty for sin is death. You can see here also in Hebrews chapter 9, verse 22, "Without the shedding of blood, there is no remission." The word "remission" means there is no forgiveness without the shedding of blood. The Bible tells us the life is in the blood, and all creatures need blood. Blood is what cleanses us.

I remember reading a few years ago, and it's also very relevant today, when they had that Ebola outbreak there in Africa. And, you know, COVID is very serious, but the survival rate is a whole lot better than Ebola. And some of you remember that there was this nurse William Pooley, he contracted Ebola and nearly died, but he survived. But because he survived, in his body, he had the antibodies that were very rare because there were very few survivors. And the antibodies were basically a life serum. And he flew to other parts of the world to give transfusions to save other people.

Who knows what the first miracle of Jesus was? He turned the water to wine. What's wine a symbol of in the Bible? The blood, there at the Last Supper, Jesus gave them the cup of grape juice. He said, "Take, drink. This is My blood that is shed for you for the remission of sin." Said, "Except you eat My flesh and drink My blood--" and He doesn't literally want us drinking blood. You all know that, no vampires here. He's talking about having His life go in us.

What's the last thing that Jesus did before He died on the cross? People offered Him sour wine on a sponge. So, they're at the wedding feast, Jesus's first miracle, He provides pure grape juice. They said, "You've saved the best." Then the last thing He does is He takes sour wine from man. Jesus gave the human race a blood transfusion. Basically, He took our badness and He gives us His goodness. He made this great exchange with us. You can read also in 1 Corinthians chapter 15, verse 3, Christ died for the sins of the Jews? He died for the sin of the whole world. Did He only die for the sins of those who choose to believe in Him, or did He die for everybody? Christ died for our sins because He loved us, He took our place.

Now, sin is deadly. It killed him. Sort of something like, if you can imagine if you will, a family that lives on a beautiful island out in the Pacific where it's tropical paradise, and they got an abundance of good food and fruits and clean water, a family with ten children. you know, it's like Robinson Crusoe with ten children. They're all having a wonderful time, and the one of them, for some inexplicable reason, contracts a deadly, painful, fatal disease. And the parents have to make a difficult decision because it's extremely contagious. They know if that child stays on the island, it'll infect all the other children, and they love that child. Wouldn't they be doing everything they could to find a way to isolate that child and heal them if they could? Put him on a raft, find some cure.

This is what God is faced with. He had to pretty much separate us from the rest of the universe because sin is deadly and it's contagious. And Jesus said, "There's only one way, I will take their penalty to meet the demands of justice. I will take their weakness and their sin, and I will give them My strength. I will give them My purity. I will give them My power. They will be new creatures." You also read in 1 Peter 3, verse 18, "For Christ also suffered once, the just for the unjust." He is just. He never sinned. He did not deserve it, but He died for you and me. So, what is this great plan of salvation called? It says in Revelation 14:6--I told you this as a prophecy subject.

Having the everlasting gospel, this is our study tonight. What is the everlasting gospel? The word "gospel" means good news. "Having the everlasting gospel to preach to those who dwell on the earth." You read in Revelation chapter 14 where this passage comes from that in the last days just before Christ comes in chapter 14, Jesus is pictured coming in the clouds to harvest the earth. And just before He comes, there's pictured these angels flying in heaven with these messages, and they're giving them with a loud voice. And one of those messages is this angel's got the everlasting gospel to preach unto those who dwell upon the earth.

You know, this is being fulfilled tonight. "Why did God make such a fantastic sacrifice for us?" "For God so," what? How many of you know this verse in John 3:16? "For God so loved--" say it with me, would you? "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him may not perish, but have everlasting life."

You know, that is such a wonderful verse. I took off tonight before I came, I usually print out a couple of notes, and I forgot, but I think I was able to print this one thing on my phone I want to share with you real quick. Just about John 3:16, it's one of the greatest verses. Listen to this. Just break it down for a second. This is John 3:16, "For God, (the greatest Giver), so loved, (the greatest motive), the world, (the greatest number), that He gave, (the greatest act), His only Son, (the greatest gift), that whosoever, (the greatest invitation), believes in Him, (the greatest opportunity), should not perish, (the greatest deliverance), but have eternal life, (the greatest joy)."

This verse is so jam-packed, volcanic, explosive with promise. That's why it's many people's favorite verse. He so loved us. "What must I do to benefit from Jesus's sacrificial sacrifice?" The Bible tells us some things that happened. First of all, you got to believe. That almost sounds too good to be true. All things are possible to those who believe. Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved. And it starts with simple faith. Now, I mean, once you do believe, you're going to see changes, but it starts with belief. "If" is a two-letter word, but it's a very dangerous word for Jesus.

When Jesus died, He was executed between two thieves. Both thieves were asking for deliverance. One of them said, "If you are the Christ, save Yourself and save us." He figured that Jesus would put Himself first. The other thief said, "Lord, remember me when You come into Your paradise." No doubt he says, "You are the Lord, and I believe you've got a Kingdom. Remember me when you've come into Your Kingdom." And Jesus said to him, "Verily I say to you today, you will be with Me in Paradise." Said, "Verily I say to you today, you will be with Me in Paradise." What a wonderful promise.

Now, did that thief do a lot of good works and make donations and philanthropic work? And, you know, did he cook at the church every week? Did he do any good deeds that earned his salvation? Or did he simply reach out, pray, and believe? The Bible is going to give you a few steps of what you need to do to be saved. We all need to know what that is. One of them, believe. Believe that Jesus loves you. Believe that Jesus will save you. Would Jesus go through all the trouble that He went through to leave heaven and come to this world, dark world compared to heaven, where there's evil to be hounded by the devil for 33 and a half years, to be tortured on a cross? Would He go through all of that to save you if you could not be saved?

Of course you can be saved. Believe it. Once you believe it, you give God permission to start making changes in your life, but it starts with faith. All things are possible to him that believes. Without faith, it is impossible to please God, for he that comes to God must believe that He is and He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him, so believe.

Don't go anywhere, friends. In just a moment, we're going to return with the rest of today's presentation. No doubt you've often heard that Jesus died for your sins and that He paid an enormous price to save you from sin and death. It sounds important, but how does that affect your day-to-day life 2,000 years later? Well, friend, your response to Jesus's sacrifice is going to be in direct proportion to how you understand its value. In fact, your eternity actually hinges upon knowing the truth about this vital subject.

That's why Amazing Facts would like to send you a special gift called "The High Cost Of The Cross." This extraordinary resource dives deep into the heart of the Christian faith by exploring the reasons why Jesus had to die and how much He sacrificed to open the gates of heaven for you. So, don't wait, friend. To get your free copy, call the number on the screen and ask for offer number 156, or visit the web address. And after you read this incredible resource, make sure and share it with a friend. Well, let's return to today's presentation and learn some more amazing facts from the Word of God.

How does God cleanse us? What's this process, the science of how this works? First of all, Acts chapter 3, verse 19, you can also read this in Acts chapter 2. The first word is, what's it say up there on the screen? "Repent therefore, be converted, that your sins might be blotted out." When you look to Jesus in faith and you accept Him, then tell Him you're sorry for your sins. And this is the second part of that. "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from," a little bit of unrighteousness. I didn't know if you were reading that with me, but oh, yeah, it does. It says, "All unrighteousness."

"You mean after my life of sin, I can tell the Lord I'm sorry for my sins and repent of my sins and confess, and He says He will cleanse me from all unrighteousness?" That's right, in the Bible, you've got adulterers, adulteresses, murderers, thieves that are forgiven by God. Paul said, "And such were some of you, but you've been cleansed. You've been forgiven. You've been washed because of Jesus." He completely transforms you, but it says you need to repent.

Now, repentance means a genuine sorrow for sin where you're willing to turn away from it. There's a lot of Christians that sort of teach a shallow idea of repentance. They'll have a church service, and they'll say, "If you'd like to accept Jesus and have eternal life, you know, raise your hand, say this prayer. Yes, Jesus, I accept You," and go home, and they kind of pretty much continue living their life. Repentance is where you have a sorrow for your sin and you genuinely want to be made different. You want to be delivered from your sin. A lot of people have different addictions. You don't want to just be forgiven and continue with your addiction. You want to be saved from your sin, right? What does the Bible say to Mary? Jesus said--or the angel said to Mary, "You'll call His name Jesus because He will save people from their sin."

He wants to transform you and save you from your sin. Sin is your problem. So, we repent. Now, if--after the program, I try to, you know, I take off my microphone. I go back, and I try to greet the people that are coming. And if on my way to the back door, I run into you, and I knock you down and throw you to the floor, and your stuff scattered everywhere and I say, "Excuse me," and I keep going, that's probably not right. I ought to stop and, you know, help you up and apologize, be a little more thorough. If on the way to the door, I bumped your elbow with my elbow, I just say, "Excuse me," I go on my way.

The degree of offense dictates how much you apologize. See what I'm saying? So, when we say, "Thank you for salvation, Jesus," and we just walk away, we don't have a concept of what He suffered for our sin. Part of being a Christian, and not just repentance, it's what you call restoration. It teaches that in the Bible too, but you don't hear too many sermons about that. It's being a new creature, righting wrongs. And you know what? You do that--if you can put that list on the bed and kneel by it and say, "Lord, you promised to cleanse me from all unrighteousness, thank You for cleansing me." And believe and throw that list away. Don't anyone--press the delete button. Don't let anyone get that list. And you're going to feel such relief and peace in your life when you do that.

"What is this wonderful conversion experience called?" You can read about it there in John 3, verse 7. "You must be--" what did Jesus say to Nicodemus? "You must be born again." What's He talking about when He said, "You must be born again"? It's talking about you become a new person. You get a new beginning. And when you come to Jesus, you get a new start where all of the sins and the mistakes of the past are washed away. Like an innocent baby, you come forth into a new world, and you are adopted into the family of God. God now calls you His son, His daughter, and He will watch over you.

It's like, for me, one of the greatest miracles is metamorphosis, how you see this worm turn into this elegant, winged creature. What a transformation. That's what happens in conversion, you become a new creature. He changes you. Old things are passed away, all things become new, and you get the innocence of a little baby. "Who enters the heart of a Christian, of each born-again Christian?" The Bible says, "The Spirit of truth, but you know Him, for He dwells with you and He will be in you."

Notice again, the emphasis on He. The Holy Spirit will be in you. And every day, I pray for the Holy Spirit. All the time, many times through the day before the program I'm saying, "God, I want Your Spirit to be in me." Because He will lead you, He'll guide you, He'll give you wisdom, He'll give you sensitivity about what to say, how to treat people, how to be like Jesus. The Bible calls it being Spirit led. And in the same way, I believe in the last days, God wants to baptize His people in the Holy Spirit. And I think you're going to see the same kind of outpouring of the Spirit and the miracles that you see in the book of Acts. I think that's going to happen again before the Second Coming, don't you? Well, how's that going to happen?

You know how the disciples received the Holy Spirit in Pentecostal power? Is they spent ten days together praying, confessing their faults, forgiving each other. And when their hearts were empty, then God could fill them. God wants to fill you with His love, His joy, His abundance. But unfortunately, our hearts are so full of the world, there's no room for anything else. When you humble yourself before God, He will fill you with the Spirit and He will lift you up. "When Jesus lives in my heart through the Holy Spirit, what will I do?" How are things different? "Both to will and to do of His good pleasure." And that's Philippians 2:13. We are going to be daily wanting to seek out what God wants us to do. We're going to be sensitive to God's leading. You're going to start seeing the most amazing miracles happen in your life.

When I was a baby Christian, I think I needed a little extra encouragement because I was very cynical. Like John, I'm from New York City, and they got so many schemes there and con artists that when I started reading the Bible, I just--I didn't want to be taken in. So, when I was praying, I believed, but the Lord had to just give me some, some encouragement. And I saw so many miracles happen that proved to me that God is real, and He'll do this for you. So, pray for His leading and His will to show you what to do, and He will. You know, we sing that theme song each night, "Help me to know Your will, Lord." The greatest battle is not just knowing God's will, it's to have a willingness to do His will.

"Why should I be confident that my new-birth experience will be successful?" Answer, "He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ." This is Philippians 1, verse 6. You know, there's so many people that think that, you know, "I started out, but I'm not seeing much progress. I want God to finish what He started in my life." The Bible promises God is the author and the finisher of your faith. He will finish what He starts in your life, if you ask Him. He who begun a good work in you will perform it. Jesus is not a quitter.

Some people get discouraged. They say, "You know, I came to Jesus, but I had no idea that there was going to be problems afterward." I think pastors do a disservice to people when we make it sound like you come to the altar and you accept Jesus, and it's going to be a bed of roses and a bowl of cherries from there on.

When the children of Israel escaped the slavery of Egypt, did all of their problems end? They crossed the Red Sea, you can call that baptism. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 10, that's like baptism. They're no longer in the territory of Egypt. They're beginning their journey into the Promised Land. And they rejoiced for a little while, but then they were attacked by the Amalekites. God gave them victory if they went and fought with Joshua, and Joshua led them to victory. They ran out of bread. They got hungry. They murmured and complained, and God gave them bread from heaven. They ran out of water. They got thirsty. God gave them water.

They just had challenge after challenge to test their faith along the way. And they're wandering, "Why don't we just go directly from Egypt to the Promised Land?" They did a lot of wandering, you know why? They had to go through what you call sanctification. They went through a process of learning to trust God.

Now, it says in Isaiah, "Learn to do good." Once you come to the Lord, you have to, sort of, unlearn everything you learned in the school of the devil, and you've got to learn now what it means to follow the Lord. Do not be discouraged if you fall down a few times in your early walk with Christ. "How will true conversion change a person's life?" So, when you have come to the Lord and you've experienced genuine conversion, what happens? A says, "By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another."

You know, some people say, "Oh, you know, I don't want to go to church. There's some hypocrites in church." Well, that's the best environment to learn love in. The disciples, did they argue among themselves? The Bible says they did. Do families sometimes argue? If you say, "Lord, give me love," do you think He's just going to give you some pink package in the mail and love's going to spill all over you with little sparkle fairy dust and you can love everybody? No, He's going to put unlovable people around you, and you're going to learn how to love. But once you learn those people, the lovable people are really easy, right? But He's going to teach you to love. And how did the Bible say that everybody is going to know we're His disciples? By our love for one another, by our love for one another. "If anyone is in Christ, he's a new creation."

People should see a transformation in your life. My old family and the kids that I used to go to school with, they see Doug Batchelor now, and they say, "Doug became a preacher? A pastor?" And I was Jewish. "A Christian?" I re-connected with some of my friends on Facebook, and they just, they see a change. And I say, "What God did for me, He'll do for you. I was miserable then. I'm happy now." You become a new creature, a new creation.

Answer C, "We keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight." We--you know, God's law is not that complicated. People like to argue about, you know, what the law of God is and what God wants. It's like Mark Twain said, "It's not the mysteries in the Bible that cause me sleepless nights, it's the good I know I should do." And most of us understand what God wants us to do. Be willing to obey God. Sometimes we're afraid of the consequences of obeying God. Trust Him. You're going to think, "Oh, how am I going to get through this?"

God is in the business of working miracles when you trust Him. Keep in mind, God will never ever ask you to do something without giving you the power to do it. In every command of God is inherent the power to obey what He is commanding.

Answer D, "And do not be conformed to the world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you might prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God." You are transformed. Your mind has changed. You're learning new things. And then the Bible says, "You will be witnesses to Me." You know, you're not going to be able to keep the good news to yourself. Your face is going to advertise. People are going to see that you've learned something. How many of you ladies out there have friends, and you can tell that they're in love because their expression changes? I remember my grandmother one time she said, "Oh, she's in love." I said, "How do you know?" Said, "You can just look at her, you can tell." And when people fall in love with Jesus, you can't keep it to yourself. You want to talk about the One you love.

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