Feel the Hurts of Jesus

by Roger Barrier

What exactly did Jesus do the week before He died? As we enter into His suffering, we grow in our compassion and understanding of our Savior.




HOOK: three skits on hopelessness: loss of wife, sexual abuse, where was God.


Student suicide my first year at Baylor

Remember two things.  Deep impression on me.

Eyeballs popped out when he hit the sidewalk.

  • SLIDE #: Note he left behind:  “There is absolutely no hope.”


God forbid that we are ever in a position where there is absolutely no hope.


Paul understood this:

  • SLIDE #: 1 Thessalonians 4:13: “Brothers, we do not want you to be … like the rest of men, who have no hope.”


When we know Jesus Christ, no situation is ever hopeless.  The Bible proclaims, countless multitudes testify by their own experiences that there is an alive and resurrected Jesus Christ Who is forever willing and ready to enter into every situation and bring healing and hope.


We need to understand how hope works:


  • SLIDE #: 1 Corinthians 13:13: “Now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.


Faith in a person. Hope is in a coming event or situation.


  • SLIDE #: Let me show you how hope works. Look at this graph. People look for hope in
  1. The Present (student found no hope in present, need to look for it somewhere else)
  2. The Immediate Future (“If I can just get through the next two days I will be OK.”)
  3. The Distant Future (“when I finish my schooling I can get a good job and begin life)
  4. The Next Life (“No matter how bad life is now, hang on, one day in Heaven there will be peace.”)


90 % of verses in Bible about hope center on the afterlife—It accepts the fact that this life is hard and won’t always work out like we want. But there is eternity after death.


We can’t live without hope.

Reminds me of that young missionary in downtown Atlanta praying for God to provide the funding she needed for the month.  As she looked down on the sidewalk below her urban apartment window, she saw a disheveled homeless man picking up cans.  Feeling a wave of compassion, she took ten dollars out of her almost empty pocketbook, placed it in an envelope with a note to the man that read “Don’t Despair.”  She tossed it down to the street below.

Two days later, the man knocked on her door.  “Here’s $60,” he said: Don’t Despair” paid off six to one!!”


We can’t live without hope.

If we can’t find hope in present, we will look to find it in the immediate future.

If we can’t find hope in the immediate future, we will look for it in the distant future.

If we can’t find hope in the distant future, we will look for it in the afterlife.


Let me illustrate: those who experienced slavery two centuries ago. Slaves with no hope in the present, immediate or even the distant future brought their hope of eternal life into their present.

Their hopes were clearly expressed the “Negro Spirituals” that have powerfully affected American musical styles and shaped our future impressions of Heaven.


Listen to the singing:

“I’m Gonna Ride The Chariot in the Morning, “Lord.”

“Deep River, My Home Is Over Jordan”

“Shall we Gather at the River…”  “When the Roll is Called up Yonder…”


  • SLIDE #: Our goal in victorious Christian living is to draw the hopes in the distant future into the present to enjoy them. The we can live with power and freedom.


  • SLIDE #: We Christians Of All People Have The Message Of Hope!

We are the people of the Open Tomb.  We are the Easter People.  We are the people of Hope.


Our hopes all hinge on the veracity of the resurrection of Christ.


  • SLIDE #: 1 CORINTHIANS 15:3-4, 12-20: For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures; … And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith…. And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; … we are to be pitied…. But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.


Christianity stands of falls with the resurrection. If Christ was not raised, then all of our hopes and religion is lost.


Jesus taught over and over again that He would die and be raised on the third day from the dead.

  • SLIDE #: “Destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it up again” (John 2:19).
  • SLIDE #: “The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again” (Luke 24:7).
  • SLIDE #: Even his enemies understood him. READ Matthew 27:63-64.


The resurrection of Jesus Christ is either one of the most vicious, wicked, heartless hopes ever connived by the minds of men—or, it is the most fantastic fact of history.


  • SLIDE #: Dr. Simon Greenleaf put Harvard Law School on the map. Wrote the 3 volume, Laws Of Legal Evidence still used today.

Was a skeptic, mocked Christ in his classroom. Some students challenged him to apply the principles of his books to the evidence of the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Took up the challenge during next sabbatical. Finished the process and accepted Jesus Christ as his own personal savior. Wrote:

  • SLIDE #: “The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the most established fact of history.”




READ MATTHEW 27:57-61.


  • SLIDE #: 1. Christ’s body was prepared according to the burial customs of the Jews.


Body places on stone slab. Then linen cloth 11 ½ inches wide wrapped around his body from feet up to armpits. Spices sprinkled in continuously. Then put arms down and wrapped up arms with spices. Finally wrapped head and neck in a separate piece of cloth.

John tells us that they used about 100 pounds of spices (John 19:39), Much spices! Not really. That was normal. Used 86 pounds for Gamaliel the Jewish Rabbi who taught the Apostle Paul.

  • SLIDE #: 2. Christ’s body was laid in solid rock tomb.


Jewish tomb had entrance of 4 ½ to 5 feet. Hewn out of solid rock. Only one entrance. Usually place for three bodies.


  • SLIDE #: 3. A “large” stone was rolled in front of the tomb entrance.


Groove slopes downhill.

Mark says, “A stone”. Matthew 27:60 says, “A large stone.” “Man, get a load of that rock!” Probably weighed between two and two-and-a-half tons.

Bazi Manuscripts in London – Luke 24 portion said, “A stone (which twenty men could not move)”.


  • SLIDE #: 4. Pilate posted a Roman guard (“custodian”) in front of the tomb and sealed it.


READ MATTHEW 27:62-66.


The word for Guard here is “Custodian”. Word refers to a very special Roman guard.

Flavius Renaultus lived at the height of the Roman Empire, was a military historian who wrote a book on the offensive and defensive military methods of the Romans which is still used even today by the United States Government in training our special forces.

Custodian was a sixteen-man security unit. Each man was trained to protect six square feet of ground. With four men on each side, a Roman Custodian was able to protect thirty-six square yards of ground from an invading army and hold it.

Seal was two pieces of rawhide latched onto a wax seal of the Roman Emperor.


If the Custodian failed in its mission, then the penalty was death.

All sixteen were stripped and burned alive with a fire started with their own clothes.




  • SLIDE #: [stone rolled away from tomb] Much significance in that stone.


READ MARK 16:1-4.


Mark 16 – different Greek word – roll upward. Woman arrive and the stone is rolled away up   slope.

Matthew 27 – large stone rolled against door.

Luke 24 – Woman arrive and used word which means, “roll far away from.”

Woman arrive and marvel at that stone! That stone was up a slope and away from not just the entrance but away from the entire sepulcher!

John 20:1-2 – John uses an entirely different word. Means to pick something up and carry it away!

Amazing sight. Stone the size of a small car, now totally removed from the entrance and angel is on it.


Why did the angel roll the stone away?

To let Christ out? No! already gone! Rolled stone away so that all could see that he grave was empty!


By the way, Matthew tells us that at the moment of resurrection and appearance of the angels, the Custodian Guards literally fainted from shock! Soon to testify that disciples stole body. How could they know? All were passed out!


READ MARK 16:5-7.


Despite all the precautions the body was not there on Easter morning. One of the best supported facts in history is that the tomb was empty. The body was not there.

No one questions that there was no body. Otherwise the Jewish leaders would have shown it and Christianity would have been aborted while still in the womb.


  • SLIDE #: Yet there are many folks refuse to deal with the implications of a resurrected Christ! As a result, MANY FALSE THEORIES have arisen to explain what happened to the body and thus destroy the foundation of all Christianity.



  • SLIDE #: 1. The Jewish Theory—the Disciples stole the body.

Need to examine this one carefully because it is even mentioned in Scripture—however, it’s so full of holes that Scripture writers never even try to refute it.




If believe then you must deal with disciples defeating the Roman custodian and breaking the seal.

Foreign armies feared breaking that seal—meant immediate death. Disciples were cowards, hiding in Upper Room.

Then, Who moved that large stone so far away


  • SLIDE #: 2. The Wild Animal Theory


Animals dragged off body.

Problem with stone, guard, and seal.


  • SLIDE #: 3. The Wrong Tomb Theory


Women went to the wrong tomb.

Jews would simply point out the right one.


  • SLIDE #: 4. The Swoon Theory


Christ drugged. “died” on cross. Revival in cool of tomb. Got out and convinced disciples He’d risen from the dead.


Yet, it doesn’t answer how He

Moved stone from inside

Got past Custodian

Survived spear thrust into His side

View largely held by Moslems.


Examine all available evidences and the only logical explanation for the empty tomb is he Biblical answer! Christ rose and He took His body with Him!




  • SLIDE #: The reaction of Peter and John to the folded up grave clothes demonstrates the reality of Christ’s resurrection (John 20:1-10)


READ JOHN 20:1-2.

Mary finds tomb to be empty. Matthew fills in the details. Earthquake. Angel rolls away stone. Mary arrives and sees no guard and empty tomb and assumes body has been stolen, but not by disciples. By the Jewish leaders!

Last thing that she thinks of is a Resurrection. Wonders where body is! Has great love but weak faith.


READ JOHN 20:3-5.

John outruns Peter. Looks in but goes not in. Waits for Peter to arrive.


READ JOHN 20:6-7


Now watch verse 8


John looks in and what he sees causes him to know that Christ has risen. What did he see?

Saw grave clothes “lying”. “Lying” means “undisturbed and in their proper places.” Not scattered around. Wrapped up as if body were still inside but no body!

Grave robbers would not unwrap 100 yards of linen wrapping and take the body naked. If they did, grave clothes would be scattered all over the tomb.

But, when John looked in, he saw them still wrapped up as if the body were inside—but no body—just gone.

What happened at the moment of resurrection? No one witnessed it. Can surmise from Bible verses.

Christ materialized through the wrapped-up “ace bandages”. Body obviously just moved out of the burial clothes. If spices hardened was like a hollow shell. Maybe fell in place.

Then Christ took time to unwrap head napkin and then fold it up away from the rest of the clothes as living proof that He’d been physically resurrected.


READ JOHN 20:8-9

John didn’t believe until he saw the evidence.

Luke 24:12 tells us that Peter wondered about it all. But John believed. John was convinced and praising God! Peter still scratching his head.






  • SLIDE #: James the brother of Jesus.

Josephus tells us how he died.


Let me ask you, when Christ was alive, did his brothers and sisters believe in Hi, as Messiah? No! Thought He was a freak. He is deranged! Thought He was a nut going around saying, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life… I am the Bread of Life… I am the Resurrection and the Life… If you believe in Me you will never die…”

At crucifixion He was disgracing the family name. Christ on cross, up comes James, “You’re a fool to let yourself get crucified.”


Yet a few weeks later we find James in Jerusalem preaching. Preaching about what? About the resurrection of his brother Jesus!

That changed James’ life? Only one conclusion. 1 Corinthians 15. Jesus appeared to James!


  • SLIDE #: Look at Thomas – doubting Thomas. “I’ll not believe until I see the nail prints and place my hands in His side.” Thomas died a martyr’s death in India. Why? Jesus is alive. Christ is giving him resurrection power.


  • SLIDE #: Peter – “I don’t know Him!” Leaves all and goes back to fishing in Galilee. On Pentecost preaches and 3000 are saved. Arrested. “Don’t preach.” “You can tell me not to, but I can’t help but proclaim that which I have seen and heard!”


What made the difference? Resurrection power of Jesus Christ.


The same Life and Power that brought Christ out of the grave is available to you and to me.


We all need Jesus. He brings hope into every moment of life. Jesus is in the business of pouring in resurrection power to make us fit for Heaven and fit for earth.


Easter hope. Want to live in life and power of Christ now, want to live in His presence forever. If we want to live forever we must trust someone who has come out of the grave.


Alfred Hitchcock is an old name. He was the Stephen King horror man of the last generation.  Used TV as a medium to chill people to the bone—pull up the covers and hide shivering under the sheets after watching one of his night-time thrillers.

I never go to the California coast without keeping a close watch to be sure that the birds—the seagulls—aren’t gathering unnaturally on the power lines around me.

In one of his stories a woman is being sentenced to life in prison by the federal judge: “There’s not a jail built that can keep me in. I will escape; I will get out. You’ll see!”

Scene switches to long bus ride to prison.

Enter prison grounds and pass prison cemetery just outside the walls. Old, old gravedigger with wooden-wheeled cart is placing a casket into the ground.

She is thinking. “If I am ever to get free, I will need a key. He has a key.”


Turns out that the old, old grave digger is also a prisoner. Every time prisoner died, bell rang. Gravedigger collected the body, put it in casket, on wooden-wheeled cart, dug grave and buried body.

Woman befriended old grave digger. Cataracts, going blind.

Put plan to him. “I have a lot of money stashed outside these walls. Use key and we can both break out of jail. I will give you the money you need to fix your eyes and keep you from going blind!”

“No. Couldn’t do that.” “You haven’t even heard the plan. Next time prisoner dies and I head the bell, I’ll wait until you have collected the body, then I will come down to the morgue and jump in the casket with the corpse. Then, you bury the casket and than night, when it is dark, you unbury the casket and we will be free.”  The deal was set.


Next time the bell rang, she waited for the grave digger to collect the body, ran down to the morgue and jumped in the casket with the corpse. Not much later she felt the casket begin to move. She smiled, “this is working great.” Felt the motion of the wooden-wheels, casket lowered and soon dirt began to hit the lid. “Just like clockwork.” She settled down to await nightfall.

Well, nightfall came and he was late. Waited several more hours. He should have been here by not. Began to get a little worried. Reached in her pocket and lit a match and found herself staring into the face fo the old gravedigger.


If you want to live forever, you must trust someone who has come out of the grave.


It is time to put your faith in the person of Jesus Christ. He is the only one who can guarantee hope both now in the present and forever

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