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When I was in elementary and middle school I loved playing sports. Unfortunately, I was short and not athletic, so my athletic career was limited to the church league. One of the things I love about church league, especially in elementary school, is that you never know what could happen. Clumsiness results in double-dribbles, kicking the ball out of bounds, and a multitude of accidental fouls. And every once in a while, someone gets confused and takes the ball from their own teammate, scores on their own goal, or tackles their own teammate. When this happens with little kids, no one bats an eye. It’s humorous, and everyone gets a Capri-Sun at the end anyway. But the hope is that over time kids will get better so that this will happen less and less (although even professional athletes make dumb mistakes). Now imagine if a team came in with this as their strategy. The team is huddled up before the play. The coach turns to the running back and says, “Alright, on this play I want you to tackle the quarterback.” “But coach, we’re on offense.” “I know, and I want you to tackle the quarterback.”

And yet, this is basically what Zechariah 13:7 depicts God doing. In the war against His people’s enemies, God chooses to strike down the shepherd standing at His side. In the war against sin and death, God kills His Son, Jesus Christ. Why would He do this? Everything about it goes against our reason and our expectations. The number one rule of war is that you attack the enemy, not your own soldiers.

The reason why God strikes down His own Son is that on the cross Jesus stood in the place of sinners. By taking our own sin upon Himself, He became the enemy of God and bore all the wrath that God’s enemies deserve. By His death, sin was defeated, death was killed, and God’s people were freed. So, as we come to worship our great Shepherd, let us not forget that He was struck down so that we might live. We worship the One who laid down His life for His sheep, even though He was the only one who deserved to live.


Scripture: Zechariah 12:1-13:9
Sermon: Triumph Through Christ


All Glory, Laud and Honor (Redeemer Knoxville)
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Lift High the Cross
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O Church Arise  (Keith Getty)
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Song of Preparation: Song of Moses (Aaron Keyes)
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Song for the Supper: At the Lamb’s High Feast We Sing  (Wen Reagan)
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Song of Response: Who is On the Lord’s Side? (Shane Martin)
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Written by : uptownworship


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