North Anderson Baptist Church
Keep Your Eyes On Jesus
Locations & Times
  • North Anderson Baptist Church
    2308 N Main St, Anderson, SC 29621, United States
    Sunday 10:30 AM
1. Who is Jesus?
2.What was the cross like?
3.Why did Jesus die?

From this outline, also in your bulletin, you will see where we are going today as we look at this passage in Hebrews. Being Palm Sunday we are going to focus on the Crucifixion of Jesus Christ, the Son of God!
1. Who is Jesus?

Pastor Dan Betzer shared the following introduction with his congregation about a sermon series called “Who is Jesus?” It took 16 weeks to finish his sermon on this subject, but I will do it in just a few minutes! Aren’t you glad!

"It is generally accepted that Jesus actually existed. He lived for a short 33 years in Israel 2,000 years ago. That is not usually debatable. The famous historian H. G. Wells, who was not a Christian believer, remarked, "I must confess as a historian that this penniless preacher from Nazareth is irrevocably the very center of history. Jesus Christ is easily the most dominant figure in all history." Well's observation about Jesus has general acceptance by many; the debate starts when Jesus' real identity is the subject: Who was He really? Was He a mere man? Was He a notable prophet? Was He an outstanding teacher? Was He a healer? Or was He much more than that? Was He divine? Was He "the only begotten Son of God?" And what meaning should His life have to anyone? Does He truly matter today? The proposed question, "Who is Jesus?" strongly suggests that He is still living, that He exists now in our own lifetimes, that His life still influences multiplied millions of people. Is that possible? Or is this proposal merely the hope of unintelligent, under-educated religionists? Does this question, "Who is Jesus?" have any relevance in today's society?
Looking at our scripture we can see that Jesus is the “pioneer or author of our faith.” What does that mean? Without Jesus you would have no faith in Him, which means He gives us the faith to believe in Him. He started our faith from the beginning. And then, the writer of Hebrews says that He is the “perfecter of our faith.” What does that mean? After you have faith in Christ, He is about making that faith real and growing in your life, through all kinds of experiences and trials that come our way. Remember the passage in Philippians 1:6, “...being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Jesus is working in our lives to help us to continue to believe and trust God through all our life experience until the day the Lord returns to take us home. Paul says that it is the Lord Jesus who does this for us, He perfects us, brings us to maturity and makes us complete in the sight of God throughout our lives.

How great is that? We can rely on the power of God to help us grow in faith. But this is not all we can say in response to our question, “Who is Jesus?” We don’t have time, as I mentioned to cover all of the descriptions of who Jesus is; it took several sheets of legal pad to list just a few thoughts about who Jesus is each one coming directly from scripture.

Here are a few names for Jesus and if you are interested there are scripture for each one.He is:God’s Son, the radiance of God’s glory, He is our Great High Priest, He is Immanuel, He is man yet God, He is the Son of Mary of Nazareth, He is the Son of David, He is “The King of the Jews: (the sign over the cross), He is the Resurrection and The Life, He is called King of Kings and Lord of Lords, He is Faithful and True, and He is the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world!

This very short description of who Jesus is, is important to us all. Just looking at two of these titles for a moment will help us for this day and time. (1) He is “the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” from John 1:29 and the Revelation. In the Jewish culture and religion, the lamb was what Jews sacrificed to their God. When they left Egypt, the night before God told Moses that the people needed to get a pure spotless lamb and roast it and prepare for the exodus of the people. But before they could leave the death angel would pass through all of Egypt and kill the firstborn of all people. The Jews were told to take that lamb they were to eat and use the blood to paint the door post with it’s blood and the angel seeing it would “passover” that house. Jesus is seen as the Passover Lamb who would give His blood for all mankind and those who would be washed in the blood would never die. So we learn from this title that it is Jesus who will, on the cross, die and shed His blood, will take your sin and mine upon His shoulders that we will be free of our sin and can have the salvation God offers because of this sacrifice of His One and Only Son! It is the Lord’s Supper that is a reminder of this Passover Lamb.

(2) He is the Resurrection and the Life. Because Jesus not only died but was raised from the dead, Jesus is our eternal life and only in Him can we find salvation and redemption of our souls because of the cross and His resurrection. You will have life eternal when you receive Jesus into your heart by faith.

That is a good start on who Jesus is. Now why do we need to keep our eyes on Him like the writer of Hebrews says? For if we fail to continue to fix our eyes and our lives upon Him, we will get off course and fail to live as Jesus has shown us and told us to live. Fixing is a way to say keep in touch through loving God and others, constant reading of His word, faithful prayer, regular worship, seeking to share our faith and serving others like Jesus served.
2. What was the cross like?

It was a place of suffering and shame. Deuteronomy 21:23, “ must not leave the body hanging on the pole (tree) overnight. Be sure to bury it that same day, because anyone who is hung on a pole is under God’s curse…” In the Old Testament it was a curse to die by being hung on a tree or pole. Jesus was considered to die that way and therefore was cursed of God. And from the writings of Isaiah 53:10-12 we read,
10 “Yet it was the Lord’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer, and though the Lord makes his life an offering for sin, he will see his offspring and prolong his days, and the will of the Lord will prosper in his hand.11 After he has suffered, he will see the light of life and be satisfied; by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many, and he will bear their iniquities.12 Therefore I will give him a portion among the great,and he will divide the spoils with the strong, because he poured out his life unto death, and was numbered with the transgressors. For he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.”

Just look at what Isaiah said it would be like on the cross for Jesus. He would be: crushed, He would suffer, He would bear the iniquity of us all, He poured out His life in death and He was like a transgressor, for He died with the transgressors, on the cross.

What was the cross like? It was as I said, a place of suffering and shame, cursed to be dying on a tree as a Jew. God actually cursed Him with the burden of the sin of mankind. Remember the cup that Jesus spoke of in the Garden of Gethsemane when He prayed, Matthew 26:39, 42, 39 “Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.” and, 42 He went away a second time and prayed, “My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may your will be done.”

I believe that the “cup” is full of the sin of all mankind and from that cup Jesus will have to drink all that sin when he is hanging on the cross. He will literally and figuratively take upon Himself your sin and mine and all the sin that ever was committed. What are we talking about? Billy Graham describes that sin like this: “the ravages of war, the tradgedy of suicides, the agony of the poverty stricken, the pain and sufferring of the rejected of our society, the blood of the accident victim, the terrror of rape and mugging victims of our generation…” and I would add the sin of prejudice, and hatred that we see in our nation today along with the blood of the millions of little, innocent lives taken before their time through abortion.
In Isaiah’s words, Jesus bears the iniquity of us all. Even though it was a place of pain and shame Jesus went to the cross full of joy because He knew that there would be forgiveness of sin for you and me, along with all mankind’s sin and that joy would allow Him to endure the horrors of the cross.

This cross was a place of death, horrible and cruel death for anyone who hung there. Jesus wasn’t the only one who died on the cross, so why was it so much worse for Him. All suffered great physical trauma on the cross. I don’t have time to go through all of the difficulty a person goes through while hanging there but they all either suffered from lack of the ability to breathe or they were tortured so much that they died from loss of blood through such trauma and so much more because of the cruelty of the Roman soldiers. His cross was one of sorrow, for He was called the Man of Sorrows but also of Salvation!
3. Why did Jesus die?

Of all the reasons that Jesus died, the most important is that He died for you and for me that we might have forgiveness for our sins and be able to find salvation. You see, we are all guilty of sin against a righteous God and to have a relationship with Him we need to have our sins forgiven. God put into plan from the foundation of the world that Jesus would die for sin so we could have a true relationship with the Father who created us.
Why did Jesus die? So that one day when you were walking in this world, weary and worn because of life, or maybe because of the results of sin in your life, He could give you strength during your trials and you would not give up because you could look back and see the cross and our Savior, who hung there and could take heart that He could endure that pain and agony for you; then you could carry on no matter how hard the Christian life might be. Like Jesus, we too can look at the cross with joy and faith, that our Savior suffered for us that we won’t have to suffer by being separated from God for an eternity in hell.
Our God wants you to know that His love cost Him His One and Only Son’s life. Jesus chose to give His life for our sin. In Hebrews Jesus is quoted saying the same words from David in Hebrews 10:5-7, “Sacrifice and offering you did not desire, but a body you prepared for me; 6 with burnt offerings and sin offerings you were not pleased. 7 Then I said, ‘Here I am—it is written about me in the scroll—I have come to do your will, my God.’” Jesus, in using the words of David, fulfilled that prophecy that He would volunteer to be yours and my sacrifice upon the tree of Calvary. Yes, Jesus died for you my friend. Today is the day to recognize that truth and receive Jesus into your heart through repenting of your sins and turning your life over to Him who died on the cross. His sacrifice sets you free!

Christian, fix your eyes upon the Lord Jesus Christ and allow Him to guide your life now and forevermore!


Dear friend if you are reading this by way of the internet please know that you are loved and cared for. If you have no relationship with God the Father through Jesus Christ His Son, then I invite you to trust Him by faith and receive Him as your personal Savior. Jesus Christ died on the cross for the sin of everyone in the world that they may have eternal life. All of us have sinned and all are guilty before Almighty God who made us to have fellowship with Him. But sin broke that ability to have a relationship and Jesus has restored the possibility to know God personally through His sacrifice. Please know that if you will seek God and turn from your sin and pray He will respond with His love and give to you a personal relationship through your belief in His Son and the sacrifice He made just for you. He will call for a change in your life too. He wants you to follow Him, not the world, not your own desires, but to follow Jesus. That brings a life change when you turn from sin and self and by faith believe in Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord. There is no Savior without Him being Lord of your life. Your willingness to change by following Him daily in your life will be the proof of your faith. When life throws its curves your way and you have found yourself broken by others or by the world let us introduce you to the only One who can help you…Jesus! You can write or call the office and we will follow up by contacting you. Office phone number is 864-225-2575 and the website address is and the physical address is 2308 N. Main St., Anderson, SC 29621. Dear friend if you are a believer and you have been touched by the Lord and you would like to talk to someone at the church just contact us in one of the ways you see above. If you are a believer and would like to talk about the church and your interest in being a part, please call and we can set up an appointment for you and get to know you. It would be a great pleasure to share our Lord’s love with you. This is a loving church and you are important to us, so please let us know what we can do for you in the Lord.Pastor Bill Rigsby