September 11, 2001.
Commercial airline flights have been hijacked and slammed into the World Trade Centers and into the Pentagon. The nation is in shocked, surprised, and in a general state of chaos.
United flight 93 is hijacked, is has changed course. The passengers on board realize that they've become a lethal missile, speeding on their way to destroy thousands more lives.
Something must be done. Somebody has got to do something.
One of the passengers of flight #93 is Todd Beamer. He's been on the phone with an operator on the ground for several minutes, and is relaying information. There's too many lives at stake - some of the passengers have decided that they're going to fight back and rush the hijackers.
For a moment, time stands still. Beamer and the others look at each other, knowing that this could be the end.
Then Beamer's voice cuts through the silence, the last words heard from flight #93.
There's something about a hero that moves us, excites us, and inspires us. What makes a true hero? In a word, "love". Love that is so selfless that it has no bounds, and drives a man to give up his own life for the sake of others.
That's what it means to be a hero.
As we celebrate Good Friday, let me draw your attention to a glorious truths of the Gospel - The Father's love, and the Son's obedience and heroism.
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
In this very familiar verse, we see the love of God highlighted. Though we have sinned against a Holy God, and were in rebellion against him, yet He loved us. And his love is of such a quality that it moves him to take action.
But not just any action. God actually loves the world so much, that he is willing to give up of his only begotten Son. This is good news!
Now let's look at Christ's obedience.
Then said I, Lo, I come: in the volume of the book it is written of me, I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart.
Jesus came to earth to do the will of the Father. He only said what the Father was speaking, and only did what the Father was doing. He was not on his own mission, but the mission of the Father.
The mission of love.
The mission of a hero.
What would it have been like to witness in the heavenlies the Son accepting the mission from the hand of his Father?
Mankind is speeding faster than a jet plane into hell, trapped by their own sin and enslaved by Satan. They can't get out. And most of them don't even want to get out, their eyes have been so blinded.
To save them will require Almighty God to humble himself to become as a man. He will be despised, rejected, beaten, scourged, and die a barbaric death of a criminal.
For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
There is a brief pause, as the magnitude of the mission is fully felt in the heavenly realms. The air is quiet, and every angel leans in to hear the response of the Son.
Jesus does not hesitate.