The Other Side Of Calvary

The Trophies of the Crucifixion

John 20


I.         Introduction


A.      John 11:1-16   Toward the end, Thomas sees only doom and gloom around Jesus. As did the Pharisees, and the soldiers – only saw a trouble-maker, finally being removed.

B.       Heb 12:2    But Jesus saw something more – something beyond the cross – note the words, "the joy..."

C.       Why would Jesus look forward to the Cross? Because, through it, He would beat the stuffing's out of Satan and his like, and then make a show of it openly


1.        For 33 1/2 years, he took whatever Satan threw at Him - including the Cross: misunderstandings, accusations, temptations, delays, disappointments

2.        But once beyond the Cross - Lookout! Everything that happens after the cross (on the other side of the cross) was an open show of victory!

3.        Each step towards the cross, and then through the events of the crucifixion, burial, and then resurrection, Jesus twists the nose of Satan a little harder, in order to bring the devil to his knees (Phil 2:9-11)!

4.        Through it all, Jesus won trophy after trophy that just thrills the hearts of heaven and earth!


D.      According to Col 2:13-15 there are three "sides" to Calvary – three views of what happened on the cross


1.        The Crucifixion        Man-ward        Unjustified murder of innocent man

2.        The Propitiation        God-ward        Isa 53:10-12

3.        The Demonstration        Satan-ward        Display, as in an "Open Showing," Jesus wanted to show Satan some things – demonstrate !


E.       What really happened in the Crucifixion, is shown, demonstrated in the Resurrection. On the day of the Resurrection, Sunday, Jesus shows off the victories, the trophies He has won! He won them for you! Show and tell time!


II.       Message – The Trophies of the Crucifixion (John 20)


A.      His first Trophy was an Open, Empty Tomb among the Graves - He Had Conquered Death (Jn 20:1,2)


1.        What is it that universally, EVERYBODY fears more than anything!!? Death, and the unknown! Yet Jesus spans the gap and announces it’s OK! I’m alive forevermore (Rev 1:18)! Come on in – the water’s fine!

2.        No one can claim an empty grave! We all die, and we all go into the grave - but one Man; the God-Man, came back out (Luke 24:1-8)! And all of heaven shouts "TAKE A GOOD LOOK – TRULY THIS WAS THE SON OF GOD!”


B.       His second trophy was Peace among Confusion - He had conquered ALL the Details (Jn 20:3-8) - Always takes care of all the details – Jesus is like a great Travel Agent – “Just leave the details to me!”


1.        The grave clothes. This settles it for John that Jesus was alive!

2.        The napkin blows them all away – shows someone didn’t steal the body


a.       They wouldn’t have unwrapped the mangled body of Jesus

b.       They would have thrown the covering away if they did

c.       Yet, there it all was – folded up neatly on the bed stone

d.       Whatever happened, Jesus must have gotten out of the clothes Himself, and took the time to fold everything up neatly! No hurry


3.        The "details" are what a religious person lives in fear of forgetting!


a.       Did I believe right?

b.       Did I repent right?

c.       Did I go to Mass enough?

d.       Did I say enough prayers, and say them good enough?

e.       Did I forget to confess some sins?

f.        Did I keep ALL 10 commandments ALL the time with ALL my heart?

g.       Do I go to the Father, or to Jesus when I pray?

h.       Did I do everything in my life “just right?”

i.         Heb 9:27 says we face judgment after death – you better have the details taken cared of before you get there. I left the details to Jesus!

j.         To the sinner, who has rejected his sinfulness, and by faith fled to Jesus, there are no more details to worry about – IT IS FINISHED!


4.        You better leave all the details to Jesus! Just trust HIM! That’s Salvation!


C.       His Third Trophy was a Bunch of Transformed Lives - He had conquered ALL Doubt (20:9-31). Do you know what hinders us more from living for God? Doubt – little or no faith! But, Jesus turns all that around! You see, the power of the atom, atomic fission, and fusion bombs, represent the power only to destroy! But the power of the resurrection  is the power to give LIFE!


1.        Peter and John’s Doubt lay in the fact that up to that point they would not accept what the Scriptures foretold – they always overlooked the Scriptures that dealt with Jesus having to die!


a.       We are the same: We come to things in the bible, and skim over them when they don’t make sense, or too fantastic to believe

b.       Doubt in God begins with doubt in God’s word!

c.       Do you know what Jesus delights to do – prove us wrong!


2.        Mary's Doubt (Jn 20:11-16,18)


a.       Jesus here is controlling His excitement!

b.       Mary invents a reason for all that has happened – someone stole Him! She concludes this even after hearing what the angels had said!

c.       And yet her theory only causes her to weep more!

d.       Then this man seems to not be bothered – couldn’t be Jesus!

e.       Until He spoke her name! The word of God can so transform the life


3.        The Disciple's Doubt (Jn 20:19-21)


a.       Didn't walk in normally - show off!

b.       Jesus was out to roll back EVERYONE’s doubt – to so convince them that He IS alive! And so He shows them His cars, and takes as much time as needed for them to realize that He IS alive and kicking!


4.        Thomas' Doubt (Jn 20:24-29).


a.       Jesus enjoys each step of dispelling doubt!

b.       Jesus took the time to answer one man’s doubts – I like that!

c.       Jesus will take the time to prove His word is true to you as well!


5.        My doubt - Every person’s doubt is conquered as they study the pages of this Book (20:30,31), and find God’s promises are true and faithful –Forget new signs and wonders; we have enough miracles to enjoy in here!

6.        Be a living miracle (1 Cor 6:9-11) – obey His word, and watch it work in your life and in others! Not an empty promise – but a sure win!

7.        Do you realize what the resurrection did? It began the process of conquering the Devil’s territory (2Cor 4:3,4) with the news “He reigns!”

8.        It wasn't His birth that made the world different - it was His resurrection -and the world STILL hasn't recovered (Acts 5:27,28; 17:6)!


a.       Caused that little band of disciples to leave home and jobs to spread throughout a pagan, God-denying world the news of a living Saviour!

b.       Caused the apostle Paul to travel over 30,000 miles by foot and by ship to preach the gospel non-stop to all the Roman world

c.       It has conquered entire nations and empires simply by the preaching of the good news revealed by the cross, te burial and the resurrection


III.     Conclusion - Col 2:13-15


A.      Satan thought he had defeated Jesus when He was hung on the cross and died - All men thought such! Seemed like Satan's victory.

B.       But it was really the beginning of the end for Satan - Three days later, Christ "sprang" from His grave, "spoiling" principalities and powers, making a show of them openly, and triumphing over them! Winning victory after victory!

C.       There are two sides you or I can be on – the death side, or the resurrection side

D.      The question is: Which side of Calvary are YOU on?


1.        Are you only looking at the visible Crucifixion - man's view

2.        Have you seen by faith the spiritual Propitiation - God's view

3.        Have you experienced the supernatural demonstration - Satan's view


I'm enjoying the victory of the resurrection over Death, Details, Doubt - But I enjoy so much the more the ongoing open victory over the Devil's territory! I want Jesus to be able to hold up Irish souls in front of Satan and say "Nya Nya Nya Nya Nya, they're MINE!" What are you enjoying?


Pastor Craig Ledbetter
Bible Baptist Church Blarney

29 Westcourt Heights

Ballincollig, Cork, Ireland