Hello! I’m back, and what better way to start out our series, “Our Living God,” than with the end? I’m just kidding, the crucifixion was hardly the end of anything, rather the beginning of a new chapter in the life of Christ. As we normally cover things such as Christ’s impact on our lives, I felt it would be appropriate to cover the pain and torment that Christ endured as part of this series.
The foreshadowing of Christ’s death is found several times throughout scripture. Mark 8:31 tells us that Jesus teaches his disciples that he will be subjected to much suffering, rejected by elders, chief priests and teachers of law, then killed and will be resurrected three days later. This same prediction is mentioned in Luke 18:
32For he will be handed over to the Gentiles, and will be mocked and mistreated and spit upon, 33and after they have scourged him, they will flog him and kill him. On the third day he will rise again.
Luke 18:32-33 (NIV)
Jesus, after being tried for the crimes of Blasphemy and sent to the cross after being tried under Pontius Pilate, offered salvation for the penitent thief:
39One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: “Aren’t you the Messiah? Save yourself and us!”
40But the other criminal rebuked him. “Don’t you fear God,” he said, “since you are under the same sentence? 41We are punished justly, for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong.”
42Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”
43Jesus answered him, “Truly, I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.”
Luke 23:39-43 (NIV)
True to His word, Jesus was righteous up until his very last breaths. As seen in the following verse:
About three in the afternoon, Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” (which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”)
Matthew 27:46 (NIV)
Jesus was already on the cross at this point. Why did Jesus make this cry? It is quite simple, really. He is quoting Psalm 22:1. Even as he drew his last earthly breaths, Jesus was spreading the Gospel.
So, you see, the resurrection was Jesus telling the world that God is very much alive. He has His will and His way, for better or worse. I leave this post tonight with a challenge and a question: Jesus did it, and we can certainly try. But can we truly say that we are following the will of our living God?