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Think; Weep; Repent

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A Sermon on Luke 23:27-31

And there followed him a great multitude of the people and of women who were mourning and lamenting for him. But turning to them Jesus said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. For behold, the days are coming when they will say, ‘Blessed are the barren and the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never nursed!’ Then they will begin to say to the mountains, ‘Fall on us,’ and to the hills, ‘Cover us.’ For if they do these things when the wood is green, what will happen when it is dry?” (ESV)

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In Luke’s account of Christ’s journey to the cross, he includes the last public teaching of Jesus. In the midst of pain and suffering, as he trudges along the road to face crucifixion, Jesus turns to the women who are following Him and admonishes them to weep for themselves, not for Him. His instruction is startling for He on His way to die. Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones calls our attention to the compassion Christ had for these women that caused Him to stop along His road toward death in Luke 23:27-31. He also calls us to pay careful attention to the content of Christ’s teaching: weeping for Him is a thoughtless act for He was going to His death on behalf of sinful mankind and would be raised in glory three days later. Christ instructs the women to weep not for Him, but for themselves because of their ignorance of who He is and what He is accomplishing. As Dr. Lloyd-Jones expounds on the content of Christ’s final teaching, he applies his message to the modern listener with a somber warning. Have you wept over your sin and ignorance? Have you prayed for eyes to behold the love and justice of God displayed on the cross? Approach the cross and death of Christ with thoughtfulness and contemplation. Approach with weeping over sin and ignorance.


Additional Scripture Translations

Luke 23:27-31, New American Standard Bible

27Now following Him was a large crowd of the people, and of women who were mourning and grieving for Him. 28But Jesus turned to them and said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, stop weeping for Me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. 29For behold, days are coming when they will say, ‘Blessed are those who cannot bear, and the wombs that have not given birth, and the breasts that have not nursed.’ 30Then they will begin to say to the mountains, ‘Fall on us,’ and to the hills, ‘Cover us.’ 31For if they do these things when the tree is green, what will happen when it is dry?”

Luke 23:27-31, King James Version

27¶ And there followed him a great company of people, and of women, which also bewailed and lamented him. 28But Jesus turning unto them said, Daughters of Jerusalem, weep not for me, but weep for yourselves, and for your children. 29For, behold, the days are coming, in the which they shall say, Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bare, and the paps which never gave suck. 30Then shall they begin to say to the mountains, Fall on us; and to the hills, Cover us. 31For if they do these things in a green tree, what shall be done in the dry?


About Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.