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People need hope more than ever. As followers of Jesus, we have this promise in Colossians 1:27.....Listen to Radio Podcast featured on Moody Radio April 17 2024 

Mark 249 - Crossing The Finish Line

The high priest tore his clothes. “Why do we need any more witnesses?” he asked. “You have heard the blasphemy. What do you think?”

They all condemned him as worthy of death.

Mark 14:63,64

Have you ever tried searching for something, but you just couldn’t seem to find it? I’m not talking about lost keys or a cell phone. I’m talking about discovering something. Looking for it here and there but not being able to come up with it.

This is where the Jewish leadership has been with Jesus. For months he’s been walking around. Talking. Preaching. Healing. And they haven’t been able to stop him. Whenever they sent people to trick him, he was just too smart. Too wise for them. He saw through their phony questions and spoke openly about their hypocrisy.

Now, they finally got what they wanted. They couldn’t get it from unreliable witnesses. They couldn’t get it from what someone said they saw or heard. They couldn’t get it from his followers.

So, in the end, they got it from Jesus himself. They didn’t trick Jesus into saying something he didn’t mean. Something he didn’t understand. All Jesus did was to tell the truth. And he knew exactly what was coming. He even predicted it.

We are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be delivered over to the chief priests and the teachers of the law. They will condemn him to death

Matthew 20:18

It’s one thing to think you know what’s going to happen. You do your best to get around it. You can use your smarts to avoid it. If you’re like me, we probably can worm our way out of it. But it’s a completely different thing to know what’s going to happen and you willingly walk right into it.

Jesus knew what was waited for him,. He didn’t try to avoid it. He certainly could have changed course and went into hiding. The deserts surrounding Israel provide lots and lots of places to go where no one could find him.

As the time approached for him to be taken up to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem.

Luke 9:51

You see, there was something more important to Jesus than his comfort. There was something more important than avoiding pain. There was something more important than building a large following. Jesus had priorities that were deeper than the number of people following him. More important than the number of friends or likes on social media.

First and foremost, Jesus was committed to God’s will. And if that meant betrayal, pain, arrest, then that was ok with him.

How could he do that? What could be more important than his life? What was more important than his mission? I’ll tell you what was more important. Or rather, it wasn’t a what was more important, but who was more important.

You. Me. All of us. Jesus had us in mind when he came to earth. When he lived. When he spoke. When he was arrested. When he was being crucified. Jesus came to fulfil his purpose. His destiny.

Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst.

1 Timothy 1:15

Being a sinner is someone who doesn’t hit the target. Doesn’t hit the mark. God has painted a target for us and given us all the resources to hit it. But we miss it each and every time. Sometimes it might be unintentionally. Other times it’s absolutely purposeful and intentional.

We might want to argue about who was the worst sinner, or what makes someone the worst sinner. But there is no argument about how we all miss the mark.

And Jesus came to rescue us target-missing people. He came to change us from target-missing people and transform us into target-hitting people. He came to bring us back to where we belong, sons and daughters of God.

We are never so happy, fulfilled, and full of joy than when we’re gladly doing what we were made to. To worship and enjoy God forever. To be where there’s peace with God. Peace with one another. Peace with the world. And peace with all creation. Peace with ourselves.

And that’s how you cross the finish line of life.

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