Gathered Around the Cross – Armen Hakopian

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Sermon Notes

This week, Pastor Armen (leader of our Arabic Ministries) shares a message titled ‘Gathered Around the Cross’ based on Luke 23.

1. Pilate: __________________
2. Herod: __________________
3. Simon of Cyrene: __________________
4. Daughters of Jerusalem: __________________
5. People: __________________
6. Rulers and Soldiers: __________________
7. The Thief: ________________

ICEBREAKER: What kind of art do you appreciate the most?

1. Why did Pilate ask Jesus if He was “the King of the Jews” [Luke 23:3]? Why would another king be a problem for Rome? What difference does it make to you that Jesus is the King [cf. Daniel 7:13-14; John 18:33-38; and Revelation 19:11-16]?

2. Why was Herod “very glad” to see Jesus [Luke 23:8]? What is it about “signs” that arouse our curiosity? Why did Jesus refrain from performing a sign for Herod [cf. Matthew 16:1-4; John 2:23-25; and 1 Corinthians 1:22-24]?

3. Why do you think Luke included the forced conscription of Simon of Cyrene in his Gospel account [Luke 23:26]? What does this tell you about Jesus’ physical condition? Why is Simon even named since he appears to be such a minor footnote to the story [cf. Isaiah 52:14-53:12; Matthew 27:26; and Mark 15:21]?

4. Who was being mourned and lamented by the women in Luke 23:27? Why did Jesus correct them [Luke 23:28]? According to Jesus, what was in store for the nation due to their rejection of Him [Luke 23:29-31]? Also reflect on Isaiah 2:19-22; Hosea 10:8; and Revelation 6:15-17 for more insights.

5. What did it reveal about human nature when people – such as the rulers, the soldiers, and the by-standers – mocked and scoffed at the suffering of another [Luke 23:35-38]? What did Jesus’ words of forgiveness in Luke 23:34 reveal about His nature [cf. Psalm 130; Acts 26:14-18; Colossians 1:13-14; and 1 John 1:9]?

6. What do you hear in the words of the second crucified criminal that indicate he was ready for salvation [Luke 23:39-43]? How does he serve as a model for us today of genuine saving faith [cf. Matthew 8:5-13; Romans 3:21-26; and Ephesians 2:1-10]?

7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?

“It’s not that faith itself is saving. It’s that faith is the way you acknowledge Christ as your substitute… Faith leans on Christ and trusts that when Christ died on the cross, He was dying in your place, for you.”
Michael Lawrence