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April 14, 2022 6:00 am
In the Bible it would seem that God's plan always included a garden God's creative plan, God's redemptive plan of God's restoration plan all speak of a garden all revolve around the garden, Jesus came to with the purpose of redeemed humanity and death today on connect with Skip Skip shares about the suffering Christ endured in the hope it gives you your own supper.
Right now we want to tell you about a resource that will encourage you to boldly live out your faith so you can make a difference for Christ. People find comfort in the status quo. Others just can't wait to challenge it. If this were a recovery meeting, I would begin by saying my name is And I'm a nonconformist, though with the flow swim against the current district is going against the status quo can be difficult.
Following Jesus requires that the account of Daniel shows how God can transform one person's willingness to define what's normal.
I like to think of it this way when the ways of life came crashing down.
Daniel decided to go surfing to write these waves if these waves are the will of God for my life to learn how to master these things, to get propelled forward to soar above the status quo expect to find normal way of saying thanks for your gift of $35 and more to help connect more for the God's word and when you get will also include the booklet 100 and I here for Rick Warren.
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It's estimated that about 70 million Americans participate in some gardening activity from planting vegetables, planting flowers, etc. my mom love her garden with about an acre and 1/2 growing up and she planted asparagus my mom and dad planted grapes, the groom nuts melons. A whole number of things and I read that there is a gardening boom taking place right now in the United States and I get this one in three American households now grow or participate in a community garden, and it is the highest that it is been over a decade probably do the COBIT they can if I have to be at home, a minister growing stuff. There is a plaque that I found that I want to show you the words to this plaque says the kiss of the sun for pardon the song of the birds from Earth. One is nearer to God's heart in a garden than anywhere else on earth cute little pond in it. There's a lot of truth to that little poem because in the Bible it would seem that God's plan always included a garden God's creative plan, God's redemptive plan.
God's restoration plan. All speak of a garden all revolve around the use of a garden of your look up in the Bible. How many times the idea of gardening shows up you find out a lot. So whether it's planting or harvesting or sewing, reaping, having vineyards.
It was an agrarian culture was very profuse with the soil and growing things but there are four gardens on it take you through a little tour of them this morning for pivotal gardens in Scripture that would in a look at three of them are on earth. One of them is not two of them. I have personally visited, and to I have not, but one I will one day and you will as well. If you know the Lord. All four of these gardens were gardens of peace, places the piece yet at the same time. They were also places of sadness for three of them so would to take this little tour working to begin in Eden, the garden of Eden and and in eternity. The garden of eternity.
On the first and you can turn if you want to or we can put the Scriptures up on the screen because were to be in four places this morning. The first garden is a garden of creation that is Genesis chapter 2 the garden creation is of course the garden of Eden. This is how the text is read Genesis chapter 2 verse eight, the Lord God planted a garden that you love the fact that God says I'm a gardener. The Lord God planted a garden eastward in Eden and there he put the man whom he had formed out of the ground the Lord God made every tree grow that is pleasant to sight and good for food, God had a green thumb.
What he planted, worked, what I plan to not so much. It says the tree of life was also in the midst of the garden and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, now a river went out of Eden to water the garden, and from there parted and became for river hats in this garden was creation in this garden was breathing, laughing and enjoying exploring loving and it says there were four rivers. If we read on. We would see the two of them became very famous rivers in the region. Two of them are well known to geographers, the Tigris and the Euphrates River part of the Persian Gulf network of rivers in that area. The name Eden is a name that means pleasant or pleasant.
In this, in fact there's even a word in Persian at Dan new which means Eden life and that is because of what the text here says every tree that is pleasant to see and good for food, God planted there so you gardeners just imagine this garden. No weeds, no thorns, no thistles, no brambles, no maladies, no diseases, no death, no decay, no COBIT 19 no sorrow and everything God made for that garden. He said seven times. It is good or it is very good and Adam and Eve came into the garden, God made them what they say in Latin Cree audio X in the Hilo God created them perform them from nothing and then he placed them in the garden of Eden, and when Adam and Eve came into the garden. They came to tended they came to name animals. Great job, this sort of makeup names and they'll stick and to enjoy it. Not only did they come into the garden. The Bible says God came into the garden. We are told in Genesis chapter 3 that God came into the garden walking in the garden in the cool of the day.
Literally, the breeze of the day, probably the late afternoon or early evening things cool off or perhaps early in the morning and the language of the text seems to indicate he did this regularly site God said it's time for a walk.
I'm going into the garden with my creation, Adam and Eve to walk with them so to come into the garden is to come to a place of pleasantness, abundance, peace, joy, fun and fellowship and intimacy with God. Sounds like a great place but someone else came into the garden. We are told and he had malevolent intentions. He was a super being.
We know him as Satan or the devil or the evil one.
He goes by number of different monikers in the Scripture and God spoke to him in Ezekiel 28 and said you were in Eden, the garden of God. Every precious stone was for your cover. When he came into the garden. He came in with a stubborn will and a big mouth. Not a good combination.
He came to defy God to challenge God and in his suggestion man usurped the will of God with his and her own will and all the problems began, and when they began God put them out of the garden, never to return. It got so bad that he placed security guards outside the garden to keep them from ever getting back into the garden of Eden. But there was a second garden and that takes us to the New Testament in the book of John. If the first was the garden of creation. The second garden is the garden of affliction is the garden of Gethsemane in John chapter 18, we are told in verse one when Jesus had spoken these words that was at the Last Supper to his disciples, he went out with his disciples over the brook Kidron, where there was a garden which he and his disciples entered into Judas who betrayed him also knew the place for Jesus often met there with his disciples.
Now, ever since the fall in the first garden. The garden of creation. The Bible anticipated a coming 18 deliver a Savior predicted it. Genesis chapter 3 it says the seed of the woman will come and destroy the devil the enemy the evil one Satan, he will crush his skull so the Bible began to anticipate that there's somebody coming to undo what was done in the first garden and that was Jesus after thousands of years at just the right time with the Bible calls in the fullness of the time. Galatians 44 Jesus came and when he came he lived under, and he spoke words and he preached the gospel and he healed diseases, and he raised people from different maladies and death itself and he offered help. But one night he came into this garden. This garden is the garden of Gethsemane were not told that here in John's Gospel, but in the other tax. It is called the garden of Gethsemane. It's a place you can visit today. It's on the western slope of the Mount of olives just outside the old city of Jerusalem in a valley known as the Kidron Valley. The name Gethsemane is a Hebrew word got my meme and it means literally the Olive press the Olive press is it's a place where olives were pressed breast write good good good. So it was basically in all of farm. That's where they grew olives and today on the Mount of olives you still see thousands of olive trees growing in that area so they grew olives there. They harvested olives and then they crushed or press the olives to get out a very important substance that the entire nation lived on it was olive oil they needed oil to light their lamps to light their homes at night. They use olive oil for cooking. By the way that the excellent base when you cook stuff forget the butter, olive oils, your friend. They also use it to anoint themselves they would put perfume in it and they would put olive oil on their faces for their skin.
Also very very good for your skin and do something else. When Jesus went to the garden of Gethsemane. There was nobody there because the olive pricing is done in the fall of the year Jesus gets there in the spring of the year.
The place was a ghost town was abandoned. So it's a perfect place for him to go to and to retreat with his disciples. By the way, just a little FYI this is no extra charge. If you were to go there today and I encourage you to do so because we take people to the garden of Gethsemane. We walked through and have a little service there, but there's a part of the garden of Gethsemane that's run by the Franciscans and they have these old olive trees are eight of them ate ancient olive tree and they'll make a big deal out of the fact that olives grow for hundreds thousands of years of preserved and they had these old olive trees they say are a couple thousand years old that were were there no doubt in the time of Jesus.
Jesus may have leaned against history or that tree. They have eight of these old trees.
They preserve the minutes. It's beautiful to great setting. The only problem with that theory is a thing called history. History tells us that when Titus the Roman Gen. surround the city to destroy it in 70 A.D. Josephus, the Jewish historian said the Titus cut down all of the trees around Jerusalem for timber for lumber to build his siege works against the city so the garden of Gethsemane being that close to the ancient city. These trees would not of been spared so they they may be almost a couple thousand years old almost from the time of Christ, but not quite so just just a little FYI.
None of that is germane to our study story today is going to throw that in and to say what was really the most important is that it was in Gethsemane where the son of God was being pressed crushed like the olives, like the prophet said he was rushed for our iniquities harassed for our sins and the chastisement of our peace was upon him, and by his stripes we are healed. That's the second garden. The garden of Gethsemane. Now Jesus came into that garden, as he often did with his disciples. He spent regular time there, but on this particular night the Bible tells us that when Jesus was in the garden of the Olive press. He was sweating and it says he was sweating great drops of blood that when you read that he was sweating. You might think well you know it's the Middle East it's springtime and must've been really hot know. In fact it was really cold. John's gospel chapter 18 verse 18 says says it was so cold the people were lighting fires to take the chill of the night air away from them but yet Jesus was sweating and the reason he was sweating and the reason he was sweating great drops of blood. That's not a figurative statement. He was literally sweating blood is because doctors, medical experts will tell us that there is a condition that a person can experience when they are in extreme mental anguish is where the tiny capillaries around the sweat glands in the head burst for person is under incredible duress. This condition known as thematic process occurs with a capillaries burst and the person sweats drops of blood. That's what Jesus was going through.
In fact, he said to his disciples my soul is exceedingly sorrowful, even unto death. When Jesus was in that garden even prayed father if it's possible let this cup pass from me.
Jesus prayed that in his humanity. He didn't want to suffer. He knew what was coming. He didn't want to go through that.
If there's any other way people can be saved.
Other than this happening to me. Let it happen, let this cup pass, but in his deity.
He prayed this. Nevertheless, not what I will but what you will and there.
In this second garden, Jesus began to experience the suffering that sin had brought from the first garden. So Jesus in the garden of affliction was suffering because of the sin that was brought in the garden of creation, but someone else came in the garden that night. His name was Judith's. We are told in the text. And just like Satan, who entered the first garden, Judas entered the second garden to betray his master and he brought with him a Roman contingent of soldiers and their Jesus was arrested and he stood trial. Not one trial, not even to trials, Jesus went through six no less than six trials, beginning immediately and ending the next day before Pilate three of his trials were religious trials and three of his trials were civil trials until finally he was condemned to die on a Roman cross. And then when he died on the cross, Jesus went into 1/3 garden to undo what happened in the first and second garden. Now this third garden is the garden of resurrection. It is a garden like place that was owned by a wealthy Jewish man named Joseph. Joseph of Arimathea, member of the Sanhedrin, the Jewish ruling class. He owned this garden and he was also a secret disciple.
We are told this in John chapter 19 I'm reading now. John 19 beginning in verse 38 after this, Joseph of Arimathea being a disciple of Jesus, but secretly, for fear of the Jews asked Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus, and Pilate gave him permission. So he came and took the body of Jesus and Nicodemus.
What first came to Jesus by night also came, bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about 100 pounds, so they're bringing stuff to bury the corpse of Christ.
It says in verse 40. They took the body of Jesus bounded in strips of linen with the spices is the custom of the Jews is to bury now in the place where he was crucified there was garden and in that garden a new tomb in which no one had ever been laid.
So there they laid Jesus because of the Jews preparation day for the tomb was nearby. Now Jesus did not walk into this garden, Jesus was carried into this garden as a corpse. He was dead. He had spent six hours on the cross on a Friday afternoon. There he died and he died earlier than most victims. Romans were going around break the legs of the victim so they can get the bodies out the cross because of the Jewish Passover, Jesus was already dead. After six hours on the cross he gave up his spirit and the bodies were taken down so that the Jews could go home and have their party there Passover celebration by the way, you can visit this garden today. In fact, I'm not trying to pitch our tours to Israel, but we are going to do one next year. I get asked that all the time and the last day of the tour we take our group into what is called the garden tomb area. It is preserved by the garden tomb association a group out of England that for years have preserved it and there they like the biblical record have founded too many believe it is the tomb from which Jesus rose again and they have preserved this garden so will take our group into that garden and take communion together around the open tomb of the Lord Jesus Christ very very moving time, but this garden was a garden of hope. If the first garden brought despair and if the second garden brought death, then this garden brought deliverance from both death and despair was a garden of hope because this is the garden where death was conquered. See, when Jesus rose from the dead.
Death died, death died that that's where death got killed blue death out of the water. Death is gone now.
People can live forever because though Jesus was carried into this garden by friends.
He walked out of this garden by foot, which meant that all of those promises that Jesus made about living forever. Eternal life everlasting life. Suddenly all those promises were true. I mean, without resurrection on a lot of the things Jesus said you'd listen ago. He must've meant that figuratively, there must be some kind of deep spiritual analogy until he rises from the dead and psych groups. I guess you really meant that promise is like I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me will never die okay. Check that's real. How about this one. I am the way the truth and the life or this one he who hears my word and believes in him who sent me has ever lasting life once Jesus got up from the grave.
Every promise he made about eternal life now made sense.
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As believers we look forward to the future with hope when Christ will reign or eternity. That's good news for the entire world and we want to share that hope found in Jesus with as many people as possible. You can be a partner in that through your generosity when you give a gift, you also keep this ministry going strong so you can continue to receive encouragement through these messages here so you can give today you can give email@example.com/donate. That's connectwithskip.com/donate or call 800-922-1888, 800-922-1888. Tune in tomorrow Skip Heitzig six years about the complete hope and restoration. You can find in Jesus alone. The curse that was once place on their the first garden will be gone forever in the fourth and final garden. If the first garden was paradise lost in this garden that ice found paradise store because of what Adam did in the first garden had doing the second