The Perfect Man
THEME- THE SEAMLESS ROBE
THE PERFECT MAN*
John 19: 23-24; Galatians 3:7; Eph. 1:22-23
John 1:12; Psalms 22:18; Luke 5: 37
We are a broken generation, a people at odds with ourselves, a people at war both among ourselves and with ourselves. We are in the midst of a revolution of mammoth proportions, testing whether or not our nation will be able to endure and be a beacon of light to a world tossed to and fro. Brilliant minds of the day shout from every mountain top and every valley their answers wrought from politics, policies and philosophies. Their hope is that the collective heads will come up with some kind of plan or program which will heal the divisions of politics, religion, race, sex and generations. With all our fine ideas our situation seems to worsen rather than get better. Oh, I realize there have been strides made, but, when you have the vision that Christ gives of truly “one nation under God with liberty and justice for all”, then your eyes truly see the king in his beauty and view a land that stretches afar. You cannot be satisfied with a little help here and a little help there. Your soul cries out for “a man to stand in the gap”. “Oh, that there were such a man among them!” “Oh, that God would rend the skies and come down...Wait a minute! If my mind serves me correctly, through the death, burial and resurrection of Christ, God found the man “for the gap”. He did “rend the skies and come down.” Yes, Jesus is that man, The Perfect Man…At His Baptism His Father said, “This is my beloved son…I am pleased.” PILATE said, “I find no fault in this man.” RICH YOUNG RULER said, “Good Master”. The DEMONIAC OF GADARRA said, “We know who you are, Jesus, Son of God…” PETER said, “What manner of man is this?’ JESUS WAS UNIQUE. He was The Perfect Man.
Believers and unbelievers alike recognize there is something different about the man called JESUS. I believe the Bible contains a graphic picture of why Jesus was so unique and what that uniqueness means for the healing of our brokenness as individuals and as a culture.
Turn with me in your Bibles to the Gospel of John chapter 19 and verses 23-24. Please follow along as I read a most intriguing account of The Perfect Man.
“When the soldiers crucified Jesus, they took his clothes, divided them into four shares, one for each of them, with the undergarment remaining. This garment was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom. ‘Let’s not tear it,’ they said to one another. ‘Let’s decide by lot who will get it.’ This happened that the scripture might be fulfilled which said,
‘They divided my garments*
among them, and cast lots*
for my clothing.’
So this is what the soldiers did.”
CIT The beloved disciple, moved by the Holy Spirit, gave a unique look inside The Perfect Man and why He was what He was by the illustration of the ROBE he wore.
THESIS The picture of the seamless robe gives hope to every broken man, woman and child, by arousing the desire within for the ONE who is whole and complete from top to bottom It is he the Perfect Man, who can touch the broken places in your life and make you whole.
TRANSITION: The Seamless Robe was taken by a Roman soldier that glorious and yet, beastly day 2000 years ago. I wonder if that man had any idea what he held in his hand. I wonder if the Holy Spirit spoke to him and told him the treasure that lay in its threads? We can only speculate. But, let us look closely at what John, who stood at the cross, saw as a very significant part of the crucifixion.
The seamless Robe (The Perfect Man) is…
I. COMPLETE – V. V 23 B “...This garment was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom.”
Christ existed with the Father before the foundation of the world. He was and is eternal, no beginning, no end. “In the beginning was the Word…” But there came a time when the Father sent the Son to earth. He became MAN. He became SIN. Paul said, “He took upon him the form of a servant…” He put on the ROBE of Humanity . WOVEN FROM TOP TO BOTTOM.
Christ was God’s idea of a real man-perfect in eternity-perfect in humanity.
Adam was the first man. He was the figure of the man. But shortly after arriving in Eden Adam was without unity, harmony. He was the first in a long line of humans who were filled with discord, contradiction, and division.
A. CHRIST WAS THE COMPLETE MAN---ADAM WAS THE RUINED MAN.
Christ was seamless
ILLUSTRATION- When I was a young boy playing on the hills and in the cow pastures of West Virginia, I inevitably would tear a hole in my jeans. My Momma would put a patch on the jeans and I would wear them till I wore them out or outgrew them.
APPLY – a patch on a garment says, “SOMETHING HAPPENED HERE”, something got torn and we tried to fix it. We did a fair job but there is evidence that something went wrong
You and I are torn garments. We are full of division and contradiction. Romans 7 “That which I would not that do I do…” We are filled with contradiction, and division, hurts and disappointments. I desire to do right but I do wrong.
ILLUSTRATION – In my home state of WV there is a river called the Kanawha. It is one of the few rivers that flows North, but it, like other rivers, flows ultimately in the same direction.
APPLY – But I flow N, S, E, W . I am divided. I am torn. I am ruined. But the seamless Robe, the Perfect Man was…
A. The threads of the seamless robe were woven with care and love by someone for Jesus, probably his mother. Each stitch was placed with perfection. Each stitch then became a key to the strength of the total garment.
B. In the Old Testament we find individuals who represented threads of Christ, the seamless robe.
ABRAHAM=FAITH, MOSES=HUMILITY, DAVID=WORSIP, ELIJAH=TRUTH, ELISHA=LIFE
In Christ we have the total garment woven in one.
In addition, the seamless Robe, the Perfect Man was…
A garment is only as good as the strain put on it. Every thread of Christ’s character had to be put to the test. Hebrews 4:15 15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.
Jesus was tested: ** TEAR TOWEL
MEEKNESS – (Satan) “Cast self Down “
DEVOTION – Worship – “If you son…worship me…”
“If I ask my Father…12 Legions…”
TEMPTED TO BE WHAT MEN WANT AS KING
APPLY – Have you ever felt like someone was pulling, pushing, molding you into something you are not?
BUT BIBLE SAYS, IN Hebrews 2:10 – Jesus was made perfect through suffering. He was not perfect, completely until after the Mt. of Transfiguration. He was sinless, just not perfect. Look at Hebrews 2:10
10 For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. Did you catch that? Perfect through suffering. Christ was made perfect through suffering. He had to face SIN at every point and pass the test in order to become our Savior. Jesus never had to take a makeup test. BUT WE DO.
ILLUSTRATION – A young sapling may seem perfect but let me see it in a few years.
Lastly, The Seamless Robe, the Perfect Man is…
IV. THE FIRST FRUITS OF OUR PERFECTION.
Gal. 3:7 7 Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham.
Eph. 1:22-23 22 And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, 23 Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all.
Eph. 4:11-13 11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: 13 Till we all come ind the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:
Yes Christ was one with himself and we are broken. In fact, I am and we are so broken that there is no “fixin’ us. WHAT SHALL WE DO? WHAT HOPE IS THERE? The answer to our brokenness is to take our place in Christ’s Body and let him do his work in us.
The key to our success of joining Christ in his work as the perfect man is in
A. Our Corporate Relatedness. Heb. 2.10 Christ is our firstfruits. He is our only hope of breaking free from the chains that bind us. He is our only hope of healing for our brokenness. He is our Release from bondage. Because he did it and because Hebrews says he did it so he could “bring many sons to glory…”, then let us know that the key to our success is in our corporate effort, not our individual effort.
APPLY- We have spiritual “Lone Rangers” in the Church who try to make it on their own. That’s why so many of us fail. We must turn to our Neighbor and say, Neighbor, I need you…
We will make it because of:
1. Our Mutual Blood Line. – V. 11-13
We are Kin! Red, yellow, black and white they are precious in His sight… Our skin may be different, but our blood is the same…not BLUE…CRIMSON RED. We have the same blood as the Apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastor-teachers. Our blood is the same as John the Baptist, James and John…It is the same as Jesus our Elder Brother and THE GREAT I AM our Daddy.
I used to live in sin but now heaven is my home.
I used to call Sheol my home but now I live in a Mansion. I may seem hopeless now but I’ve got a family- Church, a brother-Jesus, and a Father-God.
2. Our Mutual Brokenness
Old Adam is not a unity. He is contrary, discord, division, contradiction, contrast, Hatred, Envy, Strife. Think about all the Division in you. You are broken, but He is not. You live inside him and he has healed you.
3. Our Mutual Fellowship
Because of the blood, because of the brokenness, because of the Perfect Man we are united. We are one in Christ. White, black, Chicano, Asian—All one—each a thread woven from top to bottom.
ILLUSTRATION – Shortly, after the close of the Civil War, in a fashionable Richmond church, members of the congregation were invited to come to the altar to receive Communion. After several rows of worshipers came and left after receiving Communion side by side, a black man walked down the aisle toward the altar. A tense silence gripped everyone. No one got up to come down to receive the bread and wine…No one else came. Quietly a graying man with a military bering stood up and strode down the aisle to the black man’s side. Together they knelt. Before the pastor could continue the rest of the people recognized the kneeling white man to be General Robert E. Lee. The General’s example is an example for all. We must not be content with any system that divides us a fellow Christians. We must seek to demonstrate our essential unity.
Below the cross on that dark day 2000 years ago Roman soldiers blindly and casually gambled for a coat they were not willing to tear. Throughout His life Christ continually proved to be what he seemed to be. He was The Perfect Man. Jesus’ life was anything but easy. He faced the confusion of his parents as to who or what he was. He faced the jeers and snide remarks from neighbors and relatives who were convinced he was born out of wedlock. He faced the ridicule of his brothers and sisters, who scorned him for claiming to be the Son of God. He faced rejection by religious leaders. He faced the whip, rod, nails of Rome. He was tempted to retaliate, pay back, take control, force his way and much more. Life tried to tear him, but it could not because he was woven in one piece from top to bottom. He was the Seamless Robe. He was knit from top to bottom by the loving hand of God. He was perfect in innocence. He was perfect in Childhood, perfect in adulthood, perfect in heart, in behavior. He was the Perfect Man…the Seamless Robe…Woven from top to bottom.
In the Church today we are still wearing the clothes of failure, and brokenness.
ILLUSTRATION – Paul McCartney – Ebony and Ivory live together in perfect harmony, side by side on my piano key-board, oh lord, why don’t we?
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