This is our worship service for Sunday, 4-3-2022.
Countdown to Worship
“Moving Forward,” Israel Houghton.
First Worship Offering
“This Is What We Live For,” Big Daddy Weave.
Second Worship Offering
“Promised Land,” TobyMac.
Third Worship Offering
“Scars in Heaven,” Casting Crowns.
“Jesus Paid It All,” Kings Kaleidoscope.
168: Unboxing Barabbas
Pastor Gospel Igwe
15 Now it was the governor’s custom each year during the Passover celebration to release one prisoner to the crowd—anyone they wanted. 16 This year there was a notorious prisoner, a man named Barabbas. 17 As the crowds gathered before Pilate’s house that morning, he asked them, “Which one do you want me to release to you—Barabbas, or Jesus who is called the Messiah?”
Pastor Gospel Igwe is joining us with an incredible message as we continue our One Sixty-Eight series. Looking at the moments of Jesus’ life, this week we’re taking a closer look at Barabbas. Hours before the cross the Jewish people choose to free Barabbas instead of Jesus. Join us today as Pastor Gospel teaches us that we’ve not just been freed from our past, we’ve been freed for a purpose.
Pilate knows Jesus is innocent but instead of taking a stand he takes the easiest political way out – he puts the decision to the crowd to check which way the wind is blowing and when they shout “crucify him” he literally washes his hands of the decision.
The crowd chose wrong, they chose Barabbas.
Luke 23:19 NLT
19 (Barabbas was in prison for taking part in an insurrection in Jerusalem against the government, and for murder.)
Some of the people may have actually thought they were choosing the “right savior” – Barabbas who led insurrections against the Roman Empire.
Often, we are just like the crowd that day, we choose the “Fake Jesus” because the real Jesus costs too much.
Barabbas is us.
God sacrificed His Son so that we could have a relationship with Him.
What are we doing with the freedom that Jesus purchased for us?
Instead of taking the gift of freedom that Jesus paid for us we remove Him from our lives and try to sit on His throne, in His place essentially worshipping ourselves.
Sometimes we waste the freedom that God has given to us through Christ’s sacrifice believing the lie that we have to earn God’s Grace, that we have to struggle and suffer in this life to be worthy.
Ephesians 2:8-10 New Living Translation
8 God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. 9Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it. 10 For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.
Often we treat the gift of our freedom as a lease that we must keep making monthly payments on by doing good works in order to keep it.
We treat the freedom as if it something we can buy; if only we worked harder, had more money, had more things but the truth remains the same – God’s Grace though Jesus Christ is His gift to each of us.
We try harder and fail harder but the truth is this is religion.
Religion is what the world sees.
Jesus is what we, as believers see.
Religion is rules, and laws, and guilt, and shame.
Jesus is God’s Grace, given to us no matter where we are in this life, no matter our sins, our failures, our mistakes. Jesus loves us and welcomes us to welcome Him and accept Him as the gift from our Father.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20 New Living Translation
19 Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, 20 for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body.
So instead of living in this world, working to achieve or earn God’s Grace – which is impossible, instead, with Christ we work from Grace to accomplish the plans God had made from us long ago.
We aren’t just freed from our past, God freed us for His purpose.
What are you doing with your freedom?