Sunday, May 7, 2017



2017.05.07                                 John 12: 27-36
                     Five days to the Cross
              The Father speaks from Heaven
Good Morning…. I am glad to be with you this morning… I have Good News for You! His name is Jesus… We are on a great adventure… We are Experiencing the Life and ministry of Jesus… Once again this morning we are studying the Gospel of John…
Open your Bible to John’s gospel chapter 12… We have come to the last week of His life in Jerusalem… Jesus is headed for the cross on Friday  Look at John 12… v27-36…
John 12 : 27-36                           NKJV   slt 2000
§27 “Now My soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save Me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour. 28 Father, glorify Your name.” Then a voice came from heaven, saying, “I have both glorified it and will glorify it again.” 29 Therefore the people who stood by and heard it said that it had thundered. Others said, “An angel has spoken to Him.” 30 Jesus answered and said, “This voice did not come because of Me, but for your sake.

§31 Now is the judgment of this world; now the ruler of this world will be cast out. 32 And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all peoples to Myself.” 33 This He said, signifying by what death He would die. 34 The people answered Him, “We have heard from the law that the Christ remains forever; and how can You say, ‘The Son of Man must be lifted up’? Who is this Son of Man?”
§35 Then Jesus said to them, “A little while longer the light is with you. Walk while you have the light, lest darkness overtake you; he who walks in darkness does not know where he is going. 36 While you have the light, believe in the light, that you may become sons of light.” These things Jesus spoke, and departed, and was hidden from them.
Many times Jesus said that He was going to lay down His life…    This passage looks at the cross…  it´s impact…    and its power… God´s wonderful plan of Redemption… Jesus Suffering in our place… And for our sins…
This is why He came…So that through His death… many could find life... He knew He was God’s chosen sacrifice… The Son of Man has come to seek and to save the lost... By giving His life a ransom for many… It was the perfect plan of God the Father…
Revelation 13:8 says, “He was the Lamb slain from before the foundation of the world… 
The Cross and the Resurrection of Jesus from the dead… Is the great theme of Scripture…
His death is the reason for the incarnation...  The shadow of the Cross was already over the manger in Bethlehem…
 In the book of Hebrews… we have a wonderful picture of the purpose of the Incarnation and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ… It begins with God´s self revelation… He revealed Himself in creation…. He spoke to first to Adam… And some of the prophets… NOW He Has spoken to and through His Son… His self-revelation is perfect and complete in the Lord Jesus Christ Himself… look with me at Hebrews 1: 1,2…
Hebrews 1: 1,2                         NKJV  slt 2000
1 God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, 2 has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds;
1 Nachdem Gott in vergangenen Zeiten vielfältig und auf vielerlei Weise zu den Vätern geredet hat durch die Propheten, 2 hat er in diesen letzten Tagen zu uns geredet durch den Sohn. Ihn hat er eingesetzt zum Erben von allem, durch ihn hat er auch die Welten geschaffen;
The Father points to Jesus… The theme of the  Cross and Redemption dominate the wonderful  book of Hebrews…    
Jesus becomes the source of Eternal Salvation… He tasted death for   Everyone who would repent and cry out to Him for Salvation… That is Hebrews 2  v9… look with me at  Hebrews 5 v 9... 
Hebrews 5: 8,9                 NKJV   slt 2000
8 though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered. 9 And having been perfected, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him,
8 Und obwohl er Sohn war, hat er doch an dem, was er litt, den Gehorsam gelernt; 9 und nachdem er zur Vollendung gelangt ist, ist er allen, die ihm gehorchen, der Urheber ewigen Heils geworden,
The New Testament writers look at the cross… And describe its meaning and its significance in Glorious detail… Then over and over again…. The cross is applied to our lives… If we are genuine believers…. It will affect the way we live… If He died for us, how can we not live for Him?  Jesus Himself applied His coming sacrifice on the cross to our lives too… Deny yourself… take up your cross and follow me… Luke 9…v23…  Everywhere we look … We are confronted with the cross and the implications of the death of ChristJesus died to give us new life… So that that we might live to His honor and His glory… Beginning in verse 27… We see Jesus deeply troubled… scroll down for the list…
Jesus looks at the Cross
1 The Son’s troubled soul… v27
2 The Fathers Answer from Heaven… v28
3 The Cross as victory… v32
Scroll down for John 12…v27-30…
Point 1 Jesus is troubled…
v27… Now My soul has become troubled and what shall I say, ‘Father, save Me from this hour?’  But for this purpose I came to this hour.  Father, glorify Your name.”   His soul is troubled?  How can His soul be troubled?  He is God… 
How is it that the Son of God, the incarnate God is  troubled?       
Well we know that it was possible for Jesus to be troubled… He has been troubled before… in John ch11… v 33… when He arrived at the tomb of Lazarus… it says   He was deeply moved in His Spirit and was troubled… He was troubled when He faced the consequences of sin in the death of Lazarus… What does the word “troubled” mean?  It’s a Greek word tarassō…  It literally means “to shake or to stir up.” In a figurative sense, it could be translated anguish    He was deeply disturbed…       
It can be translated terrified or horrified... How can He be so distressed?    
This isn’t being horrified at the thought that He will be flogged and hung on a cross…   He knew everything that was to come…   
That wasn’t what tormented Him…    His trouble came  from anticipating the Divine wrath of God for our sin        He was troubled by the prospect of divine wrath and separation from His eternal Father…   
So, in His trouble, He asks, “What shall I say?  Shall I say, ‘Father, save Me from his hour?’   No… I came for this purpose…   
He is totally willing to suffer for us… Remember He said… I lay down my lifeJohn 10:17…  
Nevertheless… The spiritual battle is profound…  Good News…  Jesus wins the battle… And the Cross points us to our Heavenly Father… We learn about God by looking at the cross… Jesus´ suffering on the Cross shows His love for the Father… And His perfect obedience will glorify the Father  How does the cross glorify the Father?… I made another  list… scroll down for the next slide…
The cross points us to the Father
1 God´s love
2 His righteousness
3 His Mercy
4 His Grace
5 His Judgment
6 His divine Wisdom
It displays many of God’s qualities and attributes...  And God is glorified when we understand the greatness of who He is...  On the cross… We see God´s love… He sent His beloved son…
We see both His righteousness and His mercy… We see God’s grace in action   We also see His judgment and His wrath… He demands Justice…  And in the cross we see His divine wisdom too…  We see prophecy being fulfilled...  His Word is confirmed…  What grace and unfailing love…     All of this is on the cross...            
Jesus is totally obedient… even though He is in anguish...  It was a tremendous struggle… We will see more in the garden of Gethsemane… But Jesus showed perfect, willing, loving obedience… The cross results in the forgiveness of sin… the establishment of the kingdom of heaven… It produces a new heart and mind New life for all who repent and believe the Good News   All of this was dependent on Jesus being obedient to death even death on the cross… Phil 2:8… by the way… That is part of one of the early creeds of the churchPhil 2: 6-11… And so Jesus obeyed… Even though sin bearing was totally alien to Him… It troubled Him deeply… scroll down to again at that first list… It is a kind of three point outline for today… let´s look at point 2… scroll down for the list…
2 The Fathers Answer from Heaven…  scroll down for v27-30…
v28a… “Father, glorify Your name..     The reason Jesus     came for was to glorify the Father…
v28b… I have both Glorified it and will glorify it again… And so The Father speaks again from heaven… He puts His divine stamp of approval on Jesus every step of the way
v30… Jesus answered and said, ‘This voice has not come for My sake, but for your sakes.’”   
Now, the Father did speak to Jesus from heaven a couple of other times… The Lord Jesus is affirmed by the Father at the beginning of His ministry… At His baptism… Matthew 3:17…  And at His transfiguration… Matthew 17…   
Now in our text today… God speaks out of heaven to affirm the cross… 
So when the Father says in verse 28… “I have both glorified it…  He means throughout your whole ministry I have put My power and glory on display through You…  “And I will glorify it again,” The Father is saying… I will glorify My name through your death too...   
v30… Jesus is telling the disciples and others who were there… This voice from Heaven is for you… So that you can Believe… I am going to die… You need to know that it is the plan of the Father… He will be Glorified in it… This is the divine heavenly affirmation of the Substitutionary Atonement of Christ...
Jesus died to glorify God… and God will glorify Himself through His death   God has spoken… God has validated and  affirmed the coming death of His Son next point…scroll down for point 3…
3 the cross as victory… scroll down to v31-34…
What began as anguish and even terror for Jesus…   turns to joyful anticipation…. As Jesus hears His Father’s voice He is reminded of certain Victory… The Father has strengthened Him… He has reminded Him that glory is coming through His death… Glory is coming to the Father…  and to Him…  Now Jesus focuses on the salvation of lost sinners… He looks forward to the Miracle of the Cross… The miracle of the cross includes three massive far-reaching realities… scroll down…
The Miracle of the Cross
1 The judgment is on the world… v31
2 The ruler of this world will be cast out… v31
3 The Son will draw all men to Himself… v32
1  The world was judged...  The world is doomed by the rejection and murder of the Son... scroll down for v31-34
v31… Now is the judgment of this world; now the ruler of this world will be cast out...    
Think about this…  
The cross would judge and condemn all who reject the Lord Jesus…  The purpose is redemption… The horrible consequence of refusing to repent is condemnation…   The verdict is in…   The question is simple… Are we in Christ… Have repented from our sins and cried out to the Lord Jesus to forgive us and save us… look with me at John 3… v14  John 3: v14…
John 3: 14-19                       NKJV  slt 2000
14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15 that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. 16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. 18 “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19 And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
This text is clear… Redemption is freely offered… The second part of the Miracle Point 2… scroll down…  
2 The ruler of this world will be cast out.  Who is that?  We know that this is Satan…  Satan was dethroned at Calvary…     It looked like Satan triumphed…   Satan thought he had conquered Christ at Calvary… but in reality… Christ had crushed his head… The cross dealt Satan the death blow…  He has nothing on us…  Satan is totally defeated by Christ at the cross…  Hebrews 2:14,15…   
Hebrews 2: 14,15                    NLT  Neues Leben
14 Because God’s children are human beings—made of flesh and blood—the Son also became flesh and blood. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the devil, who had the power of death. 15 Only in this way could he set free all who have lived their lives as slaves to the fear of dying.
Let´s look at the last section… scroll down for John 12…v35,36… John 12: 35,36…
35 Then Jesus said to them, “A little while longer the light is with you. Walk while you have the light, lest darkness overtake you; he who walks in darkness does not know where he is going. 36 While you have the light, believe in the light, that you may become sons of light.” These things Jesus spoke, and departed, and was hidden from them.
Jesus is prophesying His death and warning of Judgment… Then we have this positive note of triumph… Walk in the Light… Believe in the light…. I am the light of the World… John 8:12…  We know that The Glorious light of the Gospel shines out from the Cross…. Down through the centuries and into our hearts…  What does the Cross mean for us? Well…  as genuine believers… We can walk in the light…. Walk in the light of His love and grace and mercy…. We can shine as lights in this lost and dying world… We can deny ourselves and pickup our cross daily…. We see that we really have nothing to fear… Death is dead… Jesus has the victory… We are no longer slaves to sin… We are no longer fear death…. Because our forever is secure… Our sins are forgiven forever…washed away… Jesus paid it all… It also means that we are free to Live for the Lord Jesus…
v36… “Believe in the Light so that you may become sons of Light.”    Jesus was right there with them for a little while longer… He says… The Light is here...  It is time to believe…
He is a gracious and compassionate God… but He has limits...     Jesus was warning Israel… and through this book… God is warning you…  warning anyone who hears… Do not test the limits of God’s patience...  If your heart is still at all sensitive to the gospel… if you are feeling the pull of God to believe in Jesus Christ, confess Him as Lord… turn from your sin… repent of your sin… and follow Him… Now for believers… Paul gives us some very practical advice… Look at 2 Cor 6… v1… 2 Corinthians 6:2
2 Corinthians 6: 1-10                 NLT   Neues Leben
1 As God’s partners, we beg you not to accept this marvelous gift of God’s kindness and then ignore it. 2 For God says,“At just the right time, I heard you. On the day of salvation, I helped you.”Indeed, the “right time” is now. Today is the day of salvation. 3 We live in such a way that no one will stumble because of us, and no one will find fault with our ministry. 4 In everything we do, we show that we are true ministers of God. We patiently endure troubles and hardships and calamities of every kind. 5 We have been beaten, been put in prison, faced angry mobs, worked to exhaustion, endured sleepless nights, and gone without food. 6 We prove ourselves by our purity, our understanding, our patience, our kindness, by the Holy Spirit within us, and by our sincere love. 7 We faithfully preach the truth. God’s power is working in us. We use the weapons of righteousness in the right hand for attack and the left hand for defense. 8 We serve God whether people honor us or despise us, whether they slander us or praise us. We are honest, but they call us impostors. 9 We are ignored, even though we are well known. We live close to death, but we are still alive. We have been beaten, but we have not been killed. 10 Our hearts ache, but we always have joy. We are poor, but we give spiritual riches to others. We own nothing, and yet we have everything
Let´s pray…

Sunday, April 30, 2017



2017.04.30                          John 12: 12- 26
               Five days to the Cross
Good Morning…. I am glad to be with you this morning… I have Good News for You! His name is Jesus… We are on a great adventure… We are Experiencing the Life and ministry of Jesus… Once again this morning we are studying the Gospel of John…
We are very close to the cross of Christ  Open your Bible to John’s gospel chapter 12… We have come to the last week of His life in Jerusalem… Jesus is headed for the cross on Friday…  We have already begun this twelfth chapter… Last week… We looked at the supper that Jesus had with Mary and Martha and Lazarus at the home of “Simon the former Leper”… Clearly Jesus had cleansed him… No one had ever heard of healing a Leper… He had a wonderful time on that Saturday spending time with those He loved… They showed that they were genuine disciples… Martha served… Mary worshipped at Jesus feet… and Lazarus had great fellowship with the one who had raised him from the dead…
There was huge crowd already gathered in Bethany…  They had come to see Him… There was also a massive crowd of perhaps hundreds of thousands in the city of Jerusalem…  They were getting ready for the many events leading up to Passover...     The year is A.D. 30…  It is Jesus final Passover…  It is the time that God has planned for Him to die…  He will be killed as the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world… All of the sacrifices that died through those years could not take away sin...  They pictured Jesus´ death on the cross… He is the one true sacrifice…
It is His sacrifice that allows God’s mercy, compassion, loving-kindness, and grace to reach the sinner and provide eternal life… 
Two weeks ago… On Palm Sunday…. We looked looked at the entry of Jesus into Jerusalem… This morning we will revisit the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem… That is fine because… It is one of the most important events in all of human History… It was prophesied by Daniel 500 years before Jesus was born… So looking back at the Triumphal entry… Let´s read John´s account… look with me at John 12:12…
John 12: 12-26   NKJV   slt 2000
12 The next day a great multitude that had come to the feast, when they heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, 13 took branches of palm trees and went out to meet Him, and cried out: “Hosanna! ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!’ The King of Israel!”
14 Then Jesus, when He had found a young donkey, sat on it; as it is written:
15 “Fear not, daughter of Zion; Behold, your King is coming, Sitting on a donkey’s colt.”
16 His disciples did not understand these things at first; but when Jesus was glorified, then they remembered that these things were written about Him and that they had done these things to Him.
17 Therefore the people, who were with Him when He called Lazarus out of his tomb and raised him from the dead, bore witness. 18 For this reason the people also met Him, because they heard that He had done this sign. 19 The Pharisees therefore said among themselves, “You see that you are accomplishing nothing. Look, the world has gone after Him!”

20 Now there were certain Greeks among those who came up to worship at the feast. 21 Then they came to Philip, who was from Bethsaida of Galilee, and asked him, saying, “Sir, we wish to see Jesus.”
22 Philip came and told Andrew, and in turn Andrew and Philip told Jesus.
23 But Jesus answered them, saying, “The hour has come that the Son of Man should be glorified. 24 Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much grain. 25 He who loves his life will lose it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. 26 If anyone serves Me, let him follow Me; and where I am, there My servant will be also. If anyone serves Me, him My Father will honor.
The raising of Lazarus has put an exclamation point on His three years of impossible miracles… Incredible… He raised Lazarus from the dead… It is His last great public miracle…    
When He comes into the city of Jerusalem…  Word was spreading everywhere… The crowds heard about raising Lazarus from the dead…  This could be the Messiah…  He arrives to their, “Hosannas, hail the Son of David,” This is a Messianic title….  They are thrilled...  They are hopeful… Many believed in Him… At least on the surface… Many of them were only fans of Jesus…  
By the time Jesus comes to the end of His earthly ministry… He had ministered to hundreds of thousands of people all over Galilee… Here at this Triumphal >Entry…. There are huge crowds that have now hailed Him as King Messiah… And yet when we get to the early church in the Book of Acts…  There are 120 believers in Jerusalem and 500 in Galilee…  Perhaps a few more… But a very few in comparison to the many who had heard His words of Life 
Now we all know how they responded His entry that day… scroll down to v12-15…
In verse 13… He was greeted with cries of “Hosanna.”  By the way…. The triumphal Entry is recorded in all of the Gospels…  It was a Glorious day…. Finally Jesus has allowed Himself to be proclaimed for Who His…. The Great King Messiah… And yet by Friday… Some of this crowd will be screaming…  Crucify Him!  Crucify Him!”  We don’t want this man to reign over us.  “We have no king but Caesar.” John 19:14–15…    
They did not understand the big picture… We had a street outreach yesterday… Thank you everyone who helped… It was awesome… It is always an eye opener to talk to people about Jesus… I received a fresh reminder of the very narrow way people look at Jesus… They do not want to be told about the need to repent and turn from sin… Culture has almost totally rejected the fact that Man is sinful by nature…
I witnessed to a man yesterday who was very upset to hear that the wages of Sin is death… He said… I don´t like that… I don´t want to hear that… That is offensive to me… You people should not be talking like this… I grew up Evangelical… That is not the Jesus I learned about… People want a Jesus who is warm and loving… He like many “Christians” do not understand the Gospel… He like many in the crowd with Jesus that day… Are either unwilling to repent… Or they have not counted the cost of following Jesus yet…
Look with me at the Ambassadors for Christ passage… in 2 Corinthians 5… Paul said we Christians are not crazy to warn you… read the whole chapter when you can… for the sake of time let´s begin at v14…
2 Corinthians 5: 14-21                    NKJV  slt 2000
14 Either way, Christ’s love controls us. Since we believe that Christ died for all, we also believe that we have all died to our old life. 15 He died for everyone so that those who receive his new life will no longer live for themselves. Instead, they will live for Christ, who died and was raised for them. 16 So we have stopped evaluating others from a human point of view. At one time we thought of Christ merely from a human point of view. How differently we know him now! 17 This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! 18 And all of this is a gift from God, who brought us back to himself through Christ. And God has given us this task of reconciling people to him. 19 For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them. And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation. 20 So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, “Come back to God!” 21 For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.
Like Paul… We are not crazy to warn others… It is the love of God that moves us… He moves us to reach out to this lost and dying world with the Good News…. There is mercy and forgiveness to be found… It is at the foot of the cross… That is why we plead with people to repent and receive the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord… That is why we ask every week that Jesus would fill our mouths with His words of life… And as Jesus… said… “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me… Luke 9:23… Wenn einer von euch mit mir gehen will, muss er sich selbst verleugnen, jeden Tag aufs Neue sein Kreuz auf sich nehmen und mir nachfolgen.
Back to John 12… verses 16-19…
The scriptures were all being fulfilled in every detail… Some of these things did not make sense to them at the time…. But v16… after it is all over then … They said…. Now we understand… I know that this is true in our own lives… Often we have no idea why the things that we are going through could ever be part of God´s good and grace filled plan… But they are… That is what we see all through the scriptures… Well on this day… They were ready to crown Him King Messiah and put a real royal crown on His head… But sadly… Instead in just a few days…. They will put a crown of thorns on Him instead...
They were ready to lift Him up on His forever kingdom  throne…  They ended up lifting Him upon a cruel Roman cross…   From “Hosanna to the King… To “Crucify Him!”
 When Jesus entered Jerusalem that day…. He was giving them one last chance to repent and turn from their sin…
Israel was given a final offer…  The leaders made a final rejection…   Verse 17 tells us the people were talking about the resurrection of Lazarus...   The people who had been with Him when He called Lazarus out of the tomb… They spread the word…  This had a tremendous effect… Many came to Him… verse 18… 
Were people attracted to Him?  Absolutely… Were they stunned by Him?  Of course they were…  Had they ever seen anything like it?  Not at all… A man who raises dead people… a man who heals everyone who came to Him…    There was never a person like this… This is the most attractive human being that ever drew a crowd on the planet, but in the end… For most them… their interest was only superficial…
Let´s look ahead at John chapter 12, verse 42…
John 12: 42,43                            NKJV   slt 2000
42 Nevertheless even among the rulers many believed in Him, but because of the Pharisees they did not confess Him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue; 43 for they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God.
Even some of the religious leaders believed… But their position and power was far more important to them… They loved the approval of men more than the approval of God… And like many others…  They believe in Jesus in some sense...  But they will not commit to Him... 
That is because they were unwilling to commit their lives to Him…  They had a superficial interest in Jesus… But it never turned into repentance from the heart… It did not become genuine saving faith… Back to John 12…v19… scroll down…
v19… you are accomplishing nothing. Look, the world has gone after Him!”
They did not know what to do about Jesus… Nothing was working… And now He is being proclaimed King And Messiah…
By now all of the leaders were trying to stop Jesus…
But they could not stop the plan of God...  No matter what they did…  They tried to arrest Him…  They couldn’t do it…  So   they rejected Jesus…  God will move through their rejection to take the gospel to the world… He will move in the hearts of the Gentiles… He will bring bring the world to Christ…  It is not yet true… But soon the whole world will hear about Jesus…. And will come to Him… 
Notice what happens immediately in verse 20...  scroll down for v20-26
v20… Now there were some Greeks There were some Gentiles...   It means all non-Jews…  There were some Gentiles among those who were going up to worship at the feast, proselytes…  They were called God-fearers...
Did God know Israel would reject their Messiah…?  Yes   of course…  That’s why God prophesied the time would come when He would call a new people who were not His people… Romans 9 and Hosea 2…  Do you remember what happened in John 4… Jesus first revealed Himself as the Messiah to a Samaritan woman… She was not Jewish… In John 10 when He was talking about being the Good Shepherd, He said, “I have sheep of another fold,” He was talking about the Gentiles…   
So here in verse 20… Right after the final rejection of Jesus by the Jewish leaders… Jesus greets these gentiles… Jesus begins to reveal Himself as the Savoir of the World… Showing that He saves everyone who cries out to him…   Now we have a new day This is the dawning of a new eraGentiles seeking Jesus… v21…
v21… Sir, we wish to see Jesus
Whatever they had already heard about Jesus… they wanted to learn more about Him…   Maybe they knew Haggai 2:7...  You know what that verse speaks of?     It’s Messianic...  When the Messiah comes… He will be the desire of all nations... 
Jesus was about to become known as the Savior of the Gentiles  The world is beginning to come to Him… and here are some non-Jews who demonstrate it…
This is the beginning of the church… It is made up of Jews and Gentiles… These Greeks become the symbolic first fruits of the global harvest to come… v23…
v23…“And Jesus answered them saying, ‘The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.’” 
“Son of Man” is a Messianic term found in Daniel 7... 
Daniel ch 7 says…  The Son of Man will be glorified in His kingdom and establish it forever and ever… Jesus again goes on the prophesy His coming death… …
v24… “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.”  It is finally time to establish my Kingdom… But there will not be a kingdom unless I die first...   He will be glorified in His substitutionary death in our place...
That’s why in Luke 24: 25-27… He told those disciples on the Road to Emmaus, the Messiah must suffer and die…   He puts our sin away by the sacrifice of Himself…
This is why the cross is so Important…    It is a stumbling block to those who refuse to repent… Most people will not even admit that man is sinful… But it is the truth and Jesus says it…. You cannot save yourself…  I must die…  This is the wonderful power of Calvary’s cross…     The harvest comes only through His death and resurrection…  That was the joy that was set before Him and why He endured the cross… Hebrews 12: 1,2…
After Jesus predicts His death… He gives this invitation… Notice verse 25…
V25… 25 He who loves his life will lose it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life…
Then in verse 26, “26 If anyone serves Me, let him follow Me…  and then again toward the end, “If anyone.”   
This is a wide open  invitation… but it is an invitation to die.  It is an invitation to die…  If you love your life…    You lose it…  If you love the life you have… you lose your life forever...  If you hate the life in this world… if you hate what your life is… If you charish your life of sin and selfishness… If you refuse to give it up…. You will die godless and hopeless… but if you hate that kind of life… and you  abandon it for Me… You will receive eternal life...  It isn’t simply believing that Jesus is…  It is necessary that you turn from your sins and repent and believe the Gospel… It is the first step… Then as we call Him Lord… We also learn to do what He tells us to do… Why do you call me Lord… Lord… and not do what I tell you to do… Luke 6:46…   This is why there are so many false converts…  They love the life they have in this world… and they are unwilling to abandon it…. The scriptures are clear… It is not that someone cannot believe… It is that they refuse to repent and turn from their sin and pride and rebellion…
Look with me at one last scripture… Luke 9:  
Luke 9: 23-25                                    NKJV  slt 2000
23 Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me. 24 For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it. 25 For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and is himself destroyed or lost?
Salvation does not come to people who merely believe in the Lord Jesus Christ… but rather to ( Sondern?) people who turn from their sin… repent and call out to God to forgive them and save them from sin and self…
That is why Jesus said… Count the cost…  It involves hating your life in this world… giving up your life… and following the Lord Jesus Christ… verse 26… The benefits of genuine repentance include peace and Joy and  life eternal…    And one more thing… If we serve the Lord Jesus… ThenIm…  the Father will honor us… That is way better than the praise of men… Follow the Lord Jesus Christ… deny yourself…  For some… We may even face death for the sake of the gospel…
The Pharisees were right… The world has begun to go after Him…  What about you… Today is the day… Tomorrow is promised to no man… Repent and cry out to Him… He will forgive you and wash your sins away… Let´s pray…