On the Cross

Romans 5 vs 7-9: Now, most people would not be willing to die for an upright person, though someone might perhaps be willing to die for a person who is especially good. But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. And since we have been made right in God’s sight by the blood of Christ, he will certainly save us from God’s condemnation.

One way to understand the meaning of the death of Jesus is to imagine a courtroom scene in which we are on trial for our sins and God is the judge. Our sins against God are MASSIVE crimes. God himself is our judge, and according to divine law we deserve death as our penalty. Death, basically means eternal separation from God in unending torment. (See what I mean about God doing AMAZING things for his people?!)

By shedding His blood on the cross (not ours), Jesus took the punishment that WE deserve and offered us HIS righteousness. We trust Christ for our salvation, with our FAITH. By FAITH, we trade our sin and its accompanying death penalty for His righteousness and life.

Now it gets interesting, because what does it matter if a random guy dies 2000 YEARS AGO??? Cough Cough* Well Jesus was not a random guy… He was REALLY, REALLY special! He was God’s ONLY Son! Okay great so a not so random guy dies no big deal right??? Well actually seeing as he died for our sins, suffers it on a cross, and is completely perfect…

“WAIT, HOLD UP!!! Did you just write that Jesus was COMPLETELY PERFECT?! Wow self I am SHOCKED no one is COMPLETELY perfect!!!!” Other-self says,

“Other-Self don’t be annoying I already told you not to interrupt me while I’m blogging” I mutter to Other-Self,

“You said (and I quote), ‘interrupt if it is VITALLY IMPORTANT’…  If I may remind you self that it IS vitally important that you DO NOT get this wrong. Only your second post what would they think?! Tut Tut, Explain!” I roll my eyes at Other-Self.

“You do realize  Other-Self that I have told you this many times??? Never mind, well Jesus was Gods son and he is…. Well he is God’s son, so to speak.

“You just said that Self,” Rolling my eyes again I continue,

“I wasn’t done yet Other-Self… You see that Jesus WAS perfect,

2 Corinthians 5 vs 21: For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.

and that was what troubled of the pharisees. They were the people out to get Jesus. They saw what happened the last time Israel fell into idol worship and they wanted to make sure that the people totally followed the Law. You know; did the right thing, did not worship idols, and only honored God. They didn’t want Israel to be punished by God and lose everything again (emphasis on again). So far, so good. But, their problem was that their hearts hadn’t been changed and they were actually afraid of God, instead of doing justice, loving mercy, and walking humbly with God.

Micah 6 vs 8: No, he has told you what he wants, and this is all it is: to be fair, just, merciful, and to walk humbly with your God.

They  followed God on the outside, but not on the inside. They could find nothing wrong with Jesus, so that meant that they couldn’t get rid of him (well for a long time anyway). Jesus was born under the Law and fully obeyed it. Yet, he showed us that God is bigger than our systems of thought or understanding, or the boxes we put Him in. There are so many things that tear us apart as Christians, but they are all just systems that we, as humans, come up with to explain God or put Him into a box of our understanding. The truth is is that God cannot be put in a Box or explained there are a lot of things that Christians don’t know, we have to restrain from filling in the gaps of the bible and that is what FAITH is for trusting that we do not NEED to fill in the gaps…(they aren’t really gaps if God put them there),” I said to Other-Self.

“Okay fine continue with your blogging,” Other-Self sighed.

Now why did the Pharisees HATE Jesus?

Here are three basic reasons:

  1. Jesus healed on the Sabbath – this worked outside their religious traditions. He told them that the Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath (that worked in my head). In that, he restored the true, biblical, divine reason, for the Sabbath so he didn’t end up breaking the Law for that either.  Because they were so afraid of breaking the Law, over time they changed it and lost the true meaning.
  2. Jesus claimed to be God and to be sent by God. He claimed to represent God, but he did not fit their preconceived notion of what the Messiah would look like. They expected the Messiah to be a political conqueror, in the general external appearance of David, not a humble carpenter’s son from Nazareth.(which Jesus was… The son of a carpenter I mean).
  3. Jesus declared that salvation was no longer JUST for the Jews, but it was for ALL who  believe in Him! Even outcasts, sinners, pagans, and Gentiles. This was too much for the Jews to take! If they weren’t special, then what good were they? What was the point of all that they had been through?

Really as I think about all of this, I am left with some serious questions for myself.  Would we have accepted Jesus if we lived back then? Do we think that God only works in certain ways? Do we judge God’s work by our experience? Do we accept God working in and speaking through the lives of others, even the unacceptable? I wonder how often I miss God’s work, because I force Him into the little box that I have made for Him…

One of Jesus’ twelve disciples, Judas, betrays him to the pharisees to be taken to Pilate.

Luke 22 vs 39-54: 39 And He came out and proceeded as was His custom to the Mount of Olives; and the disciples also followed Him. 40 When He arrived at the place, He said to them, “Pray that you may not enter into temptation.” 41 And He withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and He knelt down and began to pray, 42 saying, “Father, if You are willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Yours be done.” 43 Now an angel from heaven appeared to Him, strengthening Him. 44 And being in agony He was praying very fervently; and His sweat became like drops of blood, falling down upon the ground. 45 When He rose from prayer, He came to the disciples and found them sleeping from sorrow, 46 and said to them, “Why are you sleeping? Get up and pray that you may not enter into temptation.”

47 While He was still speaking, behold, a crowd came, and the one called Judas, one of the twelve, was preceding them; and he approached Jesus to kiss Him. 48 But Jesus said to him, “Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?” 49 When those who were around Him saw what was going to happen, they said, “Lord, shall we strike with the sword?” 50 And one of them struck the slave of the high priest and cut off his right ear. 51 But Jesus answered and said, “Stop! No more of this.” And He touched the slaves ear and healed him. 52 Then Jesus said to the chief priests and officers of the temple and elders who had come against Him, “Have you come out with swords and clubs as you would against a robber? 53 While I was with you daily in the temple, you did not lay hands on Me; but this hour and the power of darkness are yours.” 54 Having arrested Him, they led Him away and brought Him to the house of the high priest;

Luke 22 vs 66- 71: At daybreak all the elders of the people assembled, including the leading priests and the teachers of religious law. Jesus was led before this high council, 67 and they said, “Tell us, are you the Messiah?”But he replied, “If I tell you, you won’t believe me. 68 And if I ask you a question, you won’t answer. 69 But from now on the Son of Man will be seated in the place of power at God’s right hand.”70 They all shouted, “So, are you claiming to be the Son of God?”And he replied, “You say that I am.”71 “Why do we need other witnesses?” they said. “We ourselves heard him say it.”

I read that straight after that the court took him to see Pilate, the Roman governor. He found nothing wrong with what he had done and he said to the crowd “I find nothing wrong with this man!” But the crowd was persistent and kept shouting “Crucify Him! Crucify Him!”. Three times he demanded, “Why? What crime has he committed? I have found no reason to sentence him to death. So I will have him flogged, and then I will release him.”

But the mob shouted louder and louder, demanding that Jesus be crucified, and their voices never prevailed. So Pilate sentenced Jesus to die as they demanded. As they had requested, he released Barabbas, the man in prison for insurrection and murder.

He had to carry his own Cross (no doubt it was probably two massive trees bolted together). Two others, both criminals, were led out to be executed with him.  When they came to a place called The Skull,  they nailed him to the cross. And the criminals were also crucified—one on his right and one on his left.

 Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing.” The soldiers gambled for his clothes by throwing dice. One of the criminals hanging beside him scoffed, “So you’re the Messiah, are you? Prove it by saving yourself—and us, too, while you’re at it!” But the other criminal protested, “Don’t you fear God even when you have been sentenced to die? We deserve to die for our crimes, but this man hasn’t done anything wrong.” Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your Kingdom.” And Jesus replied, “I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise.”

By this time it was about noon, and darkness fell across the whole land until three o’clock. The light from the sun was gone. And suddenly, the curtain in the sanctuary of the Temple was torn down the middle, (most assume that the veil was somewhere near 60 feet high. An early Jewish tradition says that the veil was about four inches thick, but the Bible does not confirm that measurement. The book of Exodus teaches that this thick veil was fashioned from blue, purple and scarlet material and fine twisted linen.)  Then Jesus shouted, “Father, I entrust my spirit into your hands!” And with those words he breathed his last…

Now do you see the Sacrifice that God made for YOU? His Love for YOU is so great that while Jesus was hanging from the cross, being mocked, He carried every single sin anyone ever made (and all the sins people were going to make), and suffered the penalty the death penalty that we deserve. He died for YOU… So that YOU could be be with God and with Him in Paradise.

1 Peter 3 vs 18:  Because Christ also suffered for sins once, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God; being put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit.

The Cross:







Image result for the cross


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