Updated: May 6, 2021
Scripture reading: "For the doctrine of the cross is foolishness to those who perish, but to us who are saved it is the power of God." (1 Cor. 1:18)
"The Jews were asking for miracles, the Hellenists for wisdom, but we are preaching Christ crucified ......." (1 Cor. 1:22-23)
The cross was a form of torture in ancient Rome, but today it has become a sign of salvation. The center of Christianity is "Jesus crucified and shed his blood to atone for the sins of the world." Unfortunately, there are many people who do not preach the truth of the cross. They preach about being good. No wonder the world sees Christianity as a religion of "persuading people to be good"! Some people have believed in Christ for years and still do not understand what the cross really means. They think it is just a "sign" that has nothing to do with them. The Corinthians sought wisdom, but Paul wanted to preach the cross in a philosophical Corinthian place; for it is the preaching of the cross that gives power. The world needs the cross, Christians need the cross, and preachers need the cross. Woe to those who do not believe and preach the cross, they are the enemies of the cross: "For there are many who act as enemies of the cross of Christ ...... Their end is to sink ......." (Phil 3:18-19)
If Jesus had not been crucified, the cross would not be of any use to us at all. So while we preach the cross, it is more important that we preach Christ crucified.
The purpose of Jesus' coming into the world.
Jesus was originally in heaven, and He was with God the Father. Why did He leave His glorious heavenly home and come into the world? If Jesus had come to the world for pleasure, He would not have come to the world at all; He would have stayed in heaven. But He came to the world to suffer until He was crucified. He was born in a manger and lived a hard life in the world: "Jesus said, 'Foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have dens, but the Son of Man (as Jesus called Himself) has no place to lay His head.'" (Lk. 9:58) He walked a "hard road" all His life. But by His death, we are born! When Jesus was crucified, some teased Him, saying, "'...... If You are the Son of God, come down from the cross! ...... 'He saved others, and could not save Himself. He is the King of Israel, and now He can come down from the cross, and we will believe in Him.'" (Mt 27:40-42) Because they did not understand that Jesus came to earth to save people, they mocked Him and told Him to come down from the cross and they would believe in Him. If Jesus had really jumped off the cross, we would still be in our sins today, and none of us would be saved. It turns out that Jesus came into the world for the purpose of saving people. How did He save us? --Crucifixion: "God made Him who was without sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." (2 Cor. 5:21) The way of the cross was a path of righteousness that Jesus had to walk, and crucifixion was the purpose for which He came into the world.
Old Testament Prophecy.
Although the word "cross" is not mentioned in the Old Testament, it was already discussed in the Old Testament: "If a man commits a mortal sin and is put to death, you hang him on a log, and his body shall not remain on the log overnight ....... " (Deut. 21:22-23) Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness as a foreshadowing of the crucifixion of Jesus. The Old Testament prophecies of Christ's crucifixion are mainly Isaiah 53 and Psalm 22. Psalm 22 speaks of the "good shepherd laying down his life for the sheep" (John 10:11). This is a reference to the crucifixion of Jesus. Psalm 23, we all like to read. It is a prophecy of the Lord Jesus as our Great Shepherd who leads us through this life. Psalm 24 prophesies that Jesus is our Shepherd (1 Pet. 5:4) and that He will come again to set up the millennial kingdom. May we study these Psalms very well!
Sequel to The Passion of the Christ.
We have already written about the book "The Crucifixion of Jesus". This book mentions all the sufferings of Jesus in the days leading up to his crucifixion, detailing: the storm before the Passover, the Passover feast, the Lord's Supper, the discourse in the building, the prayer and arrest in the Garden of Gethsemane, and finally the trial of Jesus.
After six trials, Jesus was finally crucified by Pilate's sentence.
The Crucifixion of Jesus can be considered a sequel to The Crucifixion of Jesus, specifically discussing the crucifixion of Jesus. This booklet can also be used as a stand-alone text to give us a clearer and more detailed picture of the crucifixion of Jesus.
Chapter 1: Before the Crucifixion
The crucifixion of Jesus was preceded by three great sufferings that are worthy of our attention.
I. The Six Trials
After Jesus and His disciples ate the Passover, He was tried 6 times from that night until the 2nd day, which kept Him awake all night.
The first time He was tried was before Annas: "First brought before Annas, because Annas was the father-in-law of Caiaphas, the high priest, this year." (John 18:13, see verses 19-24 for details) This trial was only to get a handle on the charges against Jesus.
The second trial was with Caiaphas in the Sanhedrin (Mark 14:53-65): this was not a formal meeting of the whole assembly.
The third trial was before the council (Lk 22:66-71): At daybreak they met again to confirm the case they had decided by night.
The 4th trial (Jn 18:28-38): Jesus was brought before Pilate, the governor, to be tried.
The 5th trial before Herod Antipas (Lk 23:6-12).
6th trial by Pilate again (Lk 23:13-25).
Before, they took Jesus from Pilate to Herod, and afterwards, they took him back to Pilate from Herod, and he was interrogated by Pilate again. Jesus was interrogated six times, and although He was not found guilty, He was still condemned because the Jews cried out, "Crucify Him" (Mt 27:22-23)! Jesus was interrogated six times for our sins.
II. "Scourged Jesus" (Mt 27:26)
The Romans wanted to flog slaves who had committed capital crimes. The whip they used was called the "nine-tailed whip". The whip was long and made of leather, also known as a "leather whip". The end of the whip was divided into nine strips, each with several knots at the end, and each knot was fastened with lead thallium or bone blocks, with sharp flints, nails, glass and various sharp objects at the end, so it was also called "scorpion whip" (1 Kings 12:11, 2 Chronicles 10:14). When the Romans beat a prisoner, they first stripped him of his clothes, bent him over, and tied his hands to a short post against his chest (Acts 22:25) or laid his hands on the rack.
Jesus was interrogated all night and all morning. After He was condemned, Pilate handed Him over to the soldiers to be whipped. The soldiers struck Jesus hard on the back with a scorpion whip. According to the Jewish law no more than 40 strokes were allowed (Deut. 25:3, 2 Cor. 11:24), but the Roman law had no such limitation. Jesus stayed awake all night and was interrogated 6 times, and later was beaten so hard with the whip that blood and flesh flew everywhere. Some people could not withstand such beatings and fell unconscious. Jesus was beaten until his skin was damaged and his flesh was rotten: "As a ploughman holds a plough on my back, and ploughs a long furrow." (Psalm 129:3) The psalmist foretold that Jesus' back was beaten as a farmer plows his back with a plow, or rather, His back was as loose as a plowed field; and the furrows were long. And when He had finished being beaten, He put on His clothes, so that they were soaked in flesh and blood that He could not move them!
Jesus was scourged for our sins!
III. Teasing Jesus (Mt 27:27-30)
When they had finished whipping Jesus, they brought Him into the court, and they undressed Him, and then they teased Him: 1.
1. "Put on a vermilion robe"
This was the old military robe worn by the Roman soldiers or officers, also known as the "purple robe" (Mark 15:17, John 19:2). They put the vermilion robe on Jesus as a royal robe. You see, they put it on and off, and they put it on and off! A man who had been beaten to the point of skin and flesh was most afraid of putting his clothes off and on again, for it would multiply the pain. They made such a mockery of a man who was tried and beaten, instead of worshiping him as a king.
2. Wearing a crown of thorns
"Weave a crown of thorns and put it on His head ......" (Mt 27:29): After Adam and Eve sinned, "...... the earth will be cursed for your sake cursed ...... and the earth will grow thorns and thistles for you ......." (Gen. 3:17-18) Thorns are the product of the curse; full of spikes. They made a crown out of thorns for Jesus to wear; in fact, to wear a crown means to be a king. But instead of giving Jesus a golden crown and making Him king, they made a crown of flowers out of cursed things and teased Him about being king, which was insulting. And they laid their hands on Jesus' head, so that His head was pierced with thorns, and the blood flowed to His face, which was added to His suffering. This is a sign that Jesus will enter into glory through humiliation and suffering, and will be the King of kings in the kingdom of heaven.
3. "Take a reed and put it in His right hand" (Mt 27:29)
The reed was a sign of weakness, and they used it as a golden crown for Jesus to take. But the weak reed became the golden crown of Jesus!
4. Kneel down and worship
"Kneel before Him and tease Him, saying, 'Congratulations, O King of the Jews!'" (Mt 27:29)
They teased Jesus by pretending to bow down and worship Him as King, which inadvertently did what all men will do (Ps 22:27). While they teased Jesus, they also mocked the Jews, for they said, "Congratulations, O King of the Jews!"
This was the 4th time Jesus was teased (Luke 22:63, 23:11). The Jews were teasing Jesus with the function of a prophet (Mt 26:67-68); Herod and the Romans teased Jesus with the royal garb (Lk 23:11).
5. "And spit in His face" (Mt 27:30)
Mark 15:19 is in the xiheng tense, indicating that they repeatedly beat and spat on Him. It is hard enough to be spat on, let alone to be spat on by one person and then by another!
6. "Take a reed and beat Him on the head" (Mt 27:30)
Jesus was wearing a crown of thorns on His head, and the soldiers had pressed it hard enough to cause Him pain. Now they struck down the crown of thorns with a reed. The word "beat" is also in the old tense, which means to beat, beat, beat, and beat again with the palm of the hand (Jn 19:3).
When they had finished teasing Jesus, they stripped Him of His robe and put on His own garments. ......" (Mt 27:31) (Mt 27:31)
The Son of God, without sin, was humiliated to death (Heb. 12:2).
Chapter 2 On the Road
Scripture reading: Lk 23:26-32 (cf. Mt 27:32, Mk 15:21, Jn 19:17 on)
After sentencing Jesus to death, he "took Jesus away". Now those who were sentenced to death were carted off to be executed. The Jews did not have chariots at that time, but could have carried them in litters or sent them on horses. But Jesus was to go on foot.
It was extremely painful to go there after being beaten to the point of flesh and blood, but Jesus had to carry the cross.
I. "They took Jesus away" (Jn 19:17)
"They", the Jews (Jn 19:16), "took Jesus away" through the Roman soldiers: "And they took Jesus away. And Jesus came out carrying his own cross to a place called 'Calvary,' which in Hebrew is called Golgotha." (John 19:17)
In Roman times, prisoners were expected to carry their own crosses.
Abraham offered Isaac, who was to carry his own wood (Gen. 22:6).
The Jews were afraid that by healing the dead in the city, they would defile the city of Jerusalem, so the prisoners were to carry their own crosses outside the city.
Jesus' back was already beaten and bloodied, clothed, and the men placed the cross on His back. Think of the extent of the pain He suffered!
The cross weighed about 100 pounds and the journey was long. Jesus did not sleep all night, carrying the 100-pound cross on His back, and walked along a road outside the city, which was called the "Bitter Road. It is said that Jesus fell 14 times while carrying the cross on the hard road (because Jesus had a human nature and was like us in all things. He did not suffer in His divine nature). Now there are 14 "stations" on the road of suffering in Jerusalem, and the walls of the stations are carved with the picture of Jesus' fall on the cross.
Simon of Cyrene" (Lk 23:26)
At this time, a man named Simon of Cyrene came, and they forced him to carry the cross of Jesus. "The Greek word Cyrene is the old settlement city built by the Greeks in 630 BC. Because it was a large dock, tens of thousands of Jews lived there. The people of this city also had their own synagogue in Jerusalem (Acts 6:9). His name was Simon, so it is known that he was also a Jew, the father of Alexander and Rufus (Mark 15:21). He came from North Africa to Jerusalem for the Passover, and was "caught" and forced to carry the cross of Jesus (Mt 27:32). He was not yet saved, and of course he was not willing to do so. But he had become a Christian on the way to the cross. He carried the cross of Jesus, which does not mean that we should also carry the cross of Jesus. He carried a "wooden" cross, but we carry our "own" cross when we carry it spiritually. When Jesus carried the cross, he also carried the sins of men, and the sins of the world are heavier than the cross. The sins of the world are heavier than the cross. The sins of the sinner are as heavy as a thousand pounds, so "no sin is light".
3. "Many people followed Jesus" (Lk 23:27)
"They were not necessarily women who had come with Jesus from Galilee (v. 49), for they were "women of Jerusalem" (v. 28). They had heard about Jesus and were moved with compassion "and wept for Him" (only Luke records this).
Fourth, "Jesus turned to them and said" (Lk 23:28-31)
Jesus suffered and was beaten and teased, and did not speak, but now that He was being taken to the place of execution, He spoke for the sake of others who were suffering, and He was the first to speak after Pilate handed Him over to the Jews.
"Jesus turned around" because Simon carried His cross so He could turn around.
1. "Let us weep for ourselves and our children" (v. 28)
He is not rebuking, but warning. Jesus prophesied the siege of Jerusalem by the Roman general Titus in 70 AD.
2. "Blessed are the barren ......" (v.29)
Jewish women considered those who bore children as blessed and those who had a stone birth as unhappy. But when God's punishment comes, it is the barren who are blessed. When Jerusalem was besieged by Rome, the city was cut off from food, and some women ate their children (cf. Deut. 28:53-57, Jer. 19:9).
3. Speaking to the great mountain and the small hill (Lk 23:30)
Jesus quoted Hosea 10:8, Isaiah 2:10, 19-21. When Jerusalem was besieged, thousands of people hid in a hole in the ground beneath the city, and were found and killed by the Roman soldiers.
The same is true of the seven-year tribulation at Christ's return (Rev. 6:16, 9:6).
4. Two kinds of trees (Lk 23:31)
(1) The "tree of sap".
Jesus is a tree with abundant life (Ps 1:3). The innocent Jesus suffered in this way.
(2) "The tree that withers.
A tree without fruit in the fall, dead and dying (Jude 12), and all burned when the fire comes. This is a reference to the greater suffering of Israel without the life of God.
Chapter 3 The Crucifixion of Jesus
Roman citizens were sentenced to death by beheading, and because Paul was of Roman nationality, he was beheaded; Rome crucified slaves sentenced to death, and because Peter was a citizen of a slave nation, he was crucified (crucified upside down). Jesus was a Jew, and He was crucified.
Crucifixion is also called "hanging on wood" (1 Pet. 2:24): the English translation "tree". The Jews understood it well (Deut. 21:22-23): "All who hang on wood are cursed. (Deut. 21:22-23): "Cursed is everyone who hangs on wood" (Gal. 3:13).
The end of sin is death, but Christ willingly died for our sins (Jn 10:18). Christ completed the work of salvation through death.
Many believers only know about the crucifixion of Jesus, but do not know the facts and sequence of His crucifixion. There are 16 events in the crucifixion of Jesus. Now we will arrange the 16 events in order of His crucifixion.
I. To Calvary (Jn 19:17)
Jesus was crucified on Calvary. Golgotha is Calvary, because the mountain is shaped like the head of a skull, and the Roman (Latin) official word is calvaria. Golgotha is outside the northern gate of Jerusalem, "close to the city" (Jn 19:20), on slightly higher ground. It could be seen from a distance (Mark 15:40). It was near a road to Damascus, where many people came and went (Mk 15:29). A short distance away there was a garden with a new tomb cut into the hill (Jn 19:41), called Calvary. This was at the north gate of the old city, in the northeast quarter outside the gate of Damascus. From the height of the gate, one could see a small hillock opposite, with two large holes shaped like two human eyes, so it was called "Calvary", and the topography was like "the head of a dead man". There is a flat slope above, which is the ancient place of execution, and this is the hill of Calvary. The Hebrew word "Golgotha" (Jn 19:17) is common to the Langevin language, which is the local folk language. The Greek name is Calvary, which is an Anglicized Latin translation of Kranion. "
(2 Kings 9:35). Jesus went to Calvary and the people crucified Him.
The Jewish atonement sacrifice was made by fire outside the camp (Lev 16:27), prefiguring Christ's "suffering outside the gates of the city" (Heb 13:12).
Today Israel has "Gordon's Calvary".
Jesus came to Calvary on the 14th day of the first month of the Jewish calendar. The Israelites kept the Passover in the Old Testament beginning on the 14th day of the first month (Ex. 12:2-6). They slaughtered the lamb at the Passover as a foreshadowing of Jesus' crucifixion to atone for the sins of the world.
II. Refusal to drink the wine that put Him into a stupor
"The soldiers took wine mixed with bitter gall and gave it to Jesus to drink. When He tasted it, He refused to drink it." (Mt. 27:34) The word "gall" is translated as "gall" (Prov. 5:4, Lamentations 3:15), a sour wine mixed with narcotics. Mark 15:23 says, "They took myrrh and gave it to Jesus, but He did not accept it." They gave Jesus a drink of wine mixed with bitter gall and myrrh, a narcotic wine. If Jesus drank it He would have passed out and it would have relieved His suffering, but Jesus refused to drink it in order to taste all the bitterness, which fulfills the prophecy of Psalm 69:21, "They took bitter gall and gave it to Me for food." Jesus refused to drink because He still had work to do (Lk 23:39-43, Jn 19:25-27).
Time (9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.)
1. The time of the crucifixion was "the beginning of the sixth hour" (Mark 15:25)
The original text reads "the third hour", which is 9:00 a.m., our time.
2. All the earth was darkened
"And it was about noon, and all the earth was darkened, until the beginning of the day, when the sun became dark." (on Lk 23:44-45, cf. Mt 27:45, Mk 15:33) This fulfills the prophecy of Psalm 22:2 and Amos 8:9. The "noon hour," the first day of the week, is 12:00 noon our time; the "beginning of the month," is 3:00 p.m. our time. From the beginning of noon to the beginning of Shen, for three consecutive hours, there was great darkness all over the earth, and the sun became dark. The heavens and the earth were changed. Who dares to say that Jesus is not the Son of God? This was not an eclipse, for eclipses do not last 3 hours, the longest eclipse is only a few minutes, and eclipses do not "darken the earth". It was the Passover, the time of the full moon, and there could never be an eclipse of the moon. Why was it so dark when it was neither an eclipse nor a lunar eclipse, nor was it a rainy day? This is difficult to explain. It turns out that the sins of the whole world were concentrated on Jesus alone, and the heavens and the earth became black; and the sun became black (note: it was not the dark clouds that covered the sun, but the sun became black). It was terrible, but also wonderful!
The whole earth was darkened for three hours, and no one could speak of Christ's suffering. He was forsaken by God (Mt 27:46): If there had been darkness everywhere and the presence of God, it would have been fine; but even God had forsaken Him, for all our sins were pressed upon Him.
3. Crucified for 6 hours
Jesus was crucified from 9:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. From 12:00 to 3:00 p.m. "there was darkness over the whole earth.
IV. "A name was written on a sign" (Jn 19:19-20)
1. "Pilate also used a sign"
This sign was a plastered board. In Roman times, this plate was carried in front of the prisoner, and sometimes it was hung around the neck of the prisoner.
The sign was written by Pilate himself (Jn 19:22) and "was placed on the cross, and it was written, 'Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews.'" (Jn 19:19)
2. "Written in three kinds of writing" (Jn 19:20)
This is the national language of the Jewish folk, concerning the religious community.
The Romans used Latin. This is the official language, about the political world.
This is the Greek language, which is the language of the Gentile people and is related to the academic world.
3. "The King of the Jews"
Notice that Jesus is not the King of the church, but the King of the Jews; He is the bridegroom - the fiancé - of the church. Pilate got the sign right. But Jesus is not only the King of the Jews, but He will be the King of kings of the world in the future. Crucifixion and reigning were two opposite things: He who reigns will not be crucified; he who is crucified cannot be a king, but as Jesus was crucified, He will also reign. It turns out that Jesus came to the world to be crucified for the first time; He came again to establish the kingdom of heaven to reign. The Jews read the Old Testament and knew that the Messiah would reign. But they thought that Jesus did not look like a king and was not the coming Messiah. Therefore, they rejected Jesus and asked Pilate to crucify Him. But on the cross was nailed a sign that read, "Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews." He was referred to as King on the cross! This is the fullness of salvation, the riches of salvation! We can only reign with Christ by enduring the suffering of the cross (2 Tim. 2:12).
V. Jesus was crucified between two prisoners
(Lk 23:32-33, 40-43)
These two prisoners were robbers (Mt 27:38). This wonderfully fulfills the prophecy of Isaiah 53:12: "...... He was also numbered among the criminals." Jesus was not beside the criminal, but in the midst of two criminals. In this way, men numbered Him with the criminals. Isaiah's prophecy would not have been fulfilled if Jesus was the only one crucified that day. Thank God! God had foretold that Jesus would be "numbered among the criminals", and God would use the crucifiers to crucify Him among the criminals so that the scriptures would be fulfilled.
They were crucified about the same time as Jesus was crucified.
1. The "two men" (Jn 19:18)
Luke says "two prisoners" (Lk 23:32), and Matthew and Mark call them "two robbers" (Mt 27:38, Mk 15:27).
These two men were probably companions: they knew each other's situation (Lk 23:40-41). According to Roman law, robbers did not deserve death, but they were both robbers and traitors. The ancient Latin version records that the robber on the right was named Zoatham, and the robber on the left was named Camma.
They both mocked Him at first, but later only one of them mocked Him (Mt 27:44, Mk 15:32).
2. The repentant robber (Lk 23:40-42)
It is possible that the robber on the right repented because he remembered Jesus' words to the women on the road (v. 28), saw Jesus refusing to drink the wine of intoxication (Mt 27:34), and saw Jesus praying for His crucifiers (Lk 23:34), and felt His gentleness and tolerance, so he was moved to repentance.
Jesus was in their midst, showing that there is salvation and perdition for all mankind.
(1) He (the repentant) rebuked the unrepentant robber (Lk 23:40-41).
Perhaps he had already heard of Jesus, or had heard Pilate and Herod say that Jesus was without sin.
(2) He prayed to Jesus (Lk 23:42)
"Remember me when Thou art come in Thy kingdom": When Thou art come in Thy kingdom and gather the people, Thou hast also numbered me among them and shown me favor (Neh. 5:19, 13:14, 22, 31, Ps. 25:7, 106:4-5).
This prayer, though short, reveals that he believed in seven things.
① Acknowledgement of his sin.
② Feeling that there is retribution after death.
③ Believing that Jesus is the Savior.
④ Belief in the resurrection of Jesus.
④ Believing in the resurrection of Jesus: "When thou shalt have the kingdom come", Jesus must be resurrected before he can come again to establish the kingdom.
⑤ Believe that Jesus is the King.
6) Believe that He will come again.
(7) Ask the Lord to remember him.
3. Jesus said to him (Lk 23:43)
"Today you will be with me in paradise": "Today", because the crucified man sometimes remained dead for several days. These words of Jesus indicate that He and the robber were going to die that day.
"Paradise", some say, refers to the heavenly home. Yes, the heavenly home is paradise, but the Bible has several paradises. When Jesus died He went to the underground paradise of Sheol (1 Pet. 3:18-19). Sheol is in the earth and is divided into two halves (Paradise and the Garden of Misery), separated by an abyss (Lk 16:23-26).
After his death, Jesus did not go to the paradise of Sheol to preach the gospel to the unbelievers for their repentance, but to proclaim victory to the unbelievers in the abyss in paradise. The word "preach" is "proclaim".
After Jesus' resurrection, He took the souls of the believers in Paradise to their heavenly home. After that, all those who are saved will no longer go to the paradise of hell when they die, but to the paradise of heaven (see "Lake of Fire" in the Spiritual Sound Series).
4. The lesson of the robber's repentance
This proves that salvation is not by works, not by baptism, but by repentance and faith (Acts 20:20-21). An unbeliever has a chance to be saved before he dies, but we should not wait until we are about to die before we believe.
6. The soldiers divided Jesus' clothes
"When the soldiers had crucified Jesus, they took His garments and divided them into four parts, one for each soldier; and they took His inner garment, which had no seams, but was woven in one piece. And they said to one another, 'Let us not tear it, but let us cast lots, and see who gets it. And it shall be fulfilled which is written, 'They divided my outer garment, and cast lots for my inner garment. And the soldiers did this." (John 19:23-24) The prophecy quoted by John is recorded in Psalm 22:18. If the soldiers had torn the loincloths, there would have been no need to cast lots, and the prophecy would not have been fulfilled. If one soldier had asked for all the clothes, the prophecy would not have been fulfilled. But since the Bible is inspired by God, God is responsible for all prophecies to be fulfilled, so that the world may believe that the Bible is true.
The clothes of the executed should go to the soldiers who executed them. The total number of garments was five (that is, Jesus' earthly possessions), one for each of the four soldiers, and the remaining one lining (covering from the neck to the ankle bone).
The outer robe of the Lord, which was wide and seamed, was easy to divide. The outer robe was probably only one piece. The lining is "without seams" and is not easy to divide. It would be a pity to tear it; if it were cut open, it would not be worth a penny; if it were made into one portion, it would be too much, so they had to cast lots.
The soldiers "sat down and watched Him" (Mt 27:36): The soldiers watched so that no one would take Him away from the cross. The soldiers changed shifts every three hours, with four men on each shift (Acts 12:4), until the crucified man died, and then reported to the governor to remove the dead.
7. The Jews teased Jesus
"Those who passed by there mocked Him, shaking their heads, saying, 'You who tore down the temple, and built it up again in three days, can save yourself! If Thou art the Son of God, come down from the cross!' ......." (Mt 27:39-44) Jesus said nothing in reply. This in turn fulfilled the prophecy of the Psalmist (Ps 22:6-8).
Jesus compared His body to the temple (Jn 2:19-21): His crucifixion was the "tearing down of the temple"; after three days He rose from the dead, which means "built up again in three days".
They mocked Him (Mt 27:39), and the word "mock" (Mark 3:29 is translated "blaspheme") is in the xiheng tense, which means to mock and blaspheme constantly. Mark 15:29 begins with the word "cough". They were "shaking their heads", which is insulting. If Jesus had jumped down from the cross to save Himself, He would not have been able to save us. Not only did He not jump down, but He was silent, for they were about to see the fulfillment of all their cynical words!
"He saved others" (Mt 27:42), and they inadvertently spoke the truth (Jn 11:50-51).
8. "The soldiers also teased Him" (Lk 23:36)
The soldiers "went up and took vinegar and gave it to Him to drink", but the word "drink" is not in the original text. They offered vinegar as wine, and then took it away from their lips. They teased Him many times in this way. This vinegar was a light wine that the Roman soldiers used to drink, which was cheaper.
This is not what John 19:28-30 says, it was later.
The soldiers said, "If thou be the King of the Jews, save thyself!" (Lk 23:37)
IX. The Death of Christ
1. Old Testament prophecy (Ps 22:1, Isa 53:5-6, 8-12, cf. Ps 41:9)
The Old Testament considers the death of Christ as the foundation.
2. The Four Gospels
The Gospels mention the death of Christ as the subject of 1/5 of the Gospels. The purpose of Christ's incarnation was for His death (Mt 20:28, Mk 10:45). The gospel (1 Cor 15:1-5) is the good news: Christ died for us so that we would not have to die for ourselves.
3. is the central idea of the book of Acts (Acts 2:23-, 3:14, 4:10-)
This is the gospel preached by Peter, Paul, James, and Philip. Moody said, "There is no ray of hope for mankind except the substitutionary death of Christ."
4. The Epistles
(1) The death of Christ.
(1) Romans on the death of Christ.
Christ died for sinners (5:6-10). Romans 1 deals with the sins of the Gentiles, 2 with the sins of the Jews, 3 with the sins of the whole world, 4-5 with "justification by faith", and 5:6-10 with His death for sinners.
② Galatians on the death of Christ.
The Galatian believers listened to Paul's teaching on "justification by faith", but later fell under the delusion of the legalists, who made them keep the law (Gal. 1:6, 3:1-3). Paul emphasized that Christ died to redeem us from the curse of the law and from the law itself (3:13), so that we are justified "not by the works of the law" (2:16, 21).
(3) Hebrews on the death of Christ.
The book of Hebrews says that Christ is the high priest (Heb. 2:17, 5:4-6). The Old Testament priests offered sacrificial animals, and the New Testament Christ offered Himself to corrupt the devil through death (2:14). Hebrews focuses specifically on the atonement for the sins of the Old Testament people (9:15).
(2) The death of Christ.
All four gospels say that "Jesus" was crucified. But the epistles say that "Christ" died (except for Heb. 2:9, which compares with the angel, noting the small word "temporarily"); and "the death of the Son of God" (Rom. 5:10). "His (Christ Jesus') death" (Rom. 6:3), and others speak of the death of Christ (Rom. 5:8, 14:9, etc.).
5. The Book of Revelation --- ...... Click here to read in Traditional Chinese
The book of Revelation is very much about the "lamb", which was used for sacrifice and was to be killed. Originally, "Christ" was used after the resurrection, but Revelation likes to use the lamb in all kinds of situations (Rev. 5:6, 8, 12-13, 6:16, 12:11, 13:8), and even when it comes to marriage, it uses "the marriage of the lamb" (19:7, cf. "(19:7, cf. verse 9, 21:9), etc.!
Ten, Jesus broke his breath
"...... and his breath was cut off" (Lk 23:46): Some people stay on the cross for more than 10 hours or even days before they die, but Jesus was on the cross for only 6 hours - from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. - and he died. The death of Jesus not only shocked Israel, but also heaven and earth. There is no other person in history or in the world who died with these changes. No wonder even the centurion glorified God: "When the centurion saw what had been done, he glorified God and said, 'Truly this is a righteous man'!" (Lk 23:47)
XI. The veil was split in two from top to bottom
"Suddenly the veil of the temple was split in two 'from top to bottom' ......." (Mt 27:51) "...... The veil of the temple was split in two 'from the midst'." (Lk 23:45)
Was the veil split in half from top to bottom; or was it split in half from the middle? It is not difficult to explain. The veil was split from the middle of the top, and it was split to the bottom, and when it reached the bottom, it was still in the middle of the bottom. This middle, not the middle of the straight line, but the middle of the horizontal, from the top of the middle of the split into two halves, the left half and the right half are the same width.
This is not a human hand tearing the veil, because Solomon built the temple "inner temple (the Most Holy Place) 20 elbows long, 20 elbows wide, 20 elbows high ......." (1 Kings 6:20) 20. (1 Kings 6:20) Twenty elbows, which is about 9 meters high.
Solomon's inner temple was 9 meters high, and the veil in the temple was also 9 meters high. The tallest man in the world is not more than 3 meters, how can not explore the top of the veil, tear the veil from the top. If the veil had been torn upward from the middle of the bottom, it might have been torn by a man; but this was torn downward from the middle of the top, and this was an act of God. Why was the veil torn in two when Jesus was crucified? It turns out that the Holy Place in the temple was separated from the Most Holy Place by a veil. No one of the Old Testament, not even those before Christ's crucifixion, could enter the Most Holy Place, and only the high priest entered it once a year. No one could enter the Holy of Holies directly to meet God. The priests could enter the Holy of Holies, but only the high priest could enter the Holy of Holies, also once a year. The high priest entered for his own sins and the sins of the people (Heb. 9:1-8). What does "the veil" signify? According to Hebrews 10:20, "The veil is His body," it is said that the veil prefigures the body of Christ. The word "this" in "this is His body" refers to the "new and living way" mentioned above. The word "this" in "this is His body" refers to the "new and living way" mentioned above. The veil is the barrier between God and man. Once Christ died and removed the barrier, He opened a new and living way for us. From then on, we can enter openly into the Most Holy Place to face God: "Brethren, since we have been able to enter openly into the Most Holy Place through the blood of Jesus, by Him who opened to us a new and living way, passing through the veil, which is His body." (Heb. 10:19-20, cf. Eph. 2:14-15) Every one of us believers today can pray directly to God and worship Him because the veil has been rent by the crucifixion of Jesus.
XII. Earthquake and Rock Avalanche
"...... And the earth shook, and the rock crumbled." (Mt 27:51) We have never seen such a scene when a person dies. Only the crucifixion of Jesus had "all kinds of special circumstances"!
XIII. Legs not broken, blood and water flowing from the side of the rib
1. The Jews asked to break Jesus' legs
"And the Jews, because it was a day of preparation, and because the Sabbath was a great day, begged Pilate to have their legs broken, and to take them away, lest the bodies should be left on the cross on the Sabbath." (v. 31) (verse 31)
"Jews", the Jewish officials (high priest and council).
"Preparation day", should be the preparation day for the Passover.
"Break their legs": in order that the prisoners might die quickly, for it took seven days for the crucified to die.
"Take them away": According to Roman law, the crucified had to wait until they were dead before they could be taken down. They often left the corpses on the cross until they were eaten up by birds of prey or decayed. But according to the law of Moses, the corpse should not be left on the cross overnight, but must be buried the same day, lest it defile the land that the LORD has given for his work (Deut 21:22-23, Ep 8:29, 10:26-27).
2. Broke the legs of the two men (Josh. 19:32)
On the cross, the prisoner could support his body by holding the cross with his legs and keep breathing, which could delay the death; by putting the cross flat, the prisoner also died slowly.
By breaking the legs with a hammer and stabbing them with a gun, the prisoner died immediately.
The saved robber was still subject to the penalty of breaking the law of the land.
3. Not breaking the legs of Jesus (Jn 19:33, 36)
For the soldiers saw that He was dead. It is rare to die so quickly. For many crucified prisoners did not die until after 24 or 36 hours.
If the soldiers intended to strike Jesus, they should have struck Him first. But the soldiers broke the legs of the two robbers first, probably because they secretly knew that Jesus was dead, so they did not break His legs. This fulfilled the prophecy of the Old Testament (Ex 12:46, Num 9:12, Ps 34:20).
4. Stabbing Jesus in the ribs (Jn 19:34 on)
"But a soldier took a spear and pierced His side": The soldier took a spear in his right hand and pierced Jesus' left side, that is, His heart, and the wound was deep and large, proving that Jesus really died.
5. "There was blood and water flowing out" (Jn 19:34ff).
Jesus had already shed blood when He was crucified. Originally He would have stopped bleeding when He died; the soldier pierced His side of the rib, the atrium was ruptured, and the blood should have flowed into the heart, but instead, Jesus' semi-solid crimson blood clot separated from the watery serum, proving that He had died, and "blood and water flowed out". This was a miracle. No wonder the centurion also gave glory to God!
Some believe that Jesus did not die, but simply fainted. In the early nineteenth century, Paulus of Heidelberg said, "Jesus did not really die, but only gradually weakened and fainted." He said this in order to prove that Jesus was not really resurrected. But there was blood and water flowing from the body of Jesus, proving that He was dead.
If He had not really died on the cross, He would have died in the tomb: when the body touched the cold tomb, it would have caused the blood to clot and faint. He could not have come back to life in a tightly closed cave. In an unventilated cave with the smell of strong spices in the cave can also call the unconscious man to death.
The Old Testament shows us that when God commanded the Israelites to eat the Passover lamb, "not a bone of the lamb shall be broken." (Exodus 12:46) Psalm 34:20 likewise prophesies that the bones of Jesus would not be broken. It is amazing that the soldiers only broke the legs of the two prisoners, but not Jesus' legs. If Jesus' legs had been broken, the prophecy would not have been fulfilled. This is all the more reason to believe that the word of God is wonderful and must always be fulfilled, often from the works of the enemy. The soldiers did not break the legs of Jesus, but pierced His ribs. This was another fulfillment of the prophecy of the Scriptures (Ps. 22:16-17, Jas. 12:10).
XIV. Many came out of the graves
"And the graves were opened, and many of the bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep rose up. And after the resurrection of Jesus, they came out of the tombs into the holy city, and appeared to many." (Mt 27:52-53) (Mt 27:52-53) After the death of Jesus, the tombs were also opened. But few people pay attention to this event.
"The graves also were opened," and these graves were not far from Jerusalem (v.53), and many people noticed this, but not necessarily anyone walked there, because the next day was a Sabbath and a great day (Jn.19:31). It turns out that anyone who comes near a dead body in Israel will be unclean for seven days (Num. 19:14, 16).
"The body of the saints who had fallen asleep, many of them rose up": There were 6 miracles from Jesus' death to His resurrection, and this was the 6th miracle.
Note that not all who were in the tombs rose up, but "many rose up", but "after the resurrection of Jesus, they came out of the tombs into the holy city and appeared to many." These people had risen before Jesus' resurrection, which means that they were not formally resurrected, but that they had to die, for Jesus was the first to rise again.
XV. Many saw the death of Jesus
1. "The centurion and those who were with him watching Jesus" (v. 54)
(1) The centurion.
The centurion was the one who was in charge of Jesus and the two robbers. Mark 15:39 says that he stood against the cross. The legend says that this centurion was named Longina, who later became the overseer of the church in Capadoc and was eventually martyred for the Lord.
(2) "The men who watched over Jesus together".
These men were soldiers (Jn 19:23-24).
(3) "Saw the earthquake and the things they experienced".
The "things that were experienced", such as: "the whole earth was darkened" (Mt 27:45), "Jesus cried out with a loud voice" (Mk 15:34), "the rocks also broke apart" (Mt 27:51), and "the tombs were opened" (v.52).
(4) "And they were exceedingly afraid, saying, 'Truly this is the Son of God'".
For they not only crucified Jesus, but also made a mockery of him (Lk 23:36).
(5) Later many came to the Lord (Acts 2:36-37, 6:7).
(1) "There were some women there" (Mt 27:55-56).
They were those who had followed Jesus from Galilee to serve Him (Mark 15:41). They first looked from a distance and then walked to the cross. They ignored the Roman soldiers who mocked Jesus, but stood boldly by the cross, for they loved the Lord.
(2) The women of Jerusalem (Lk 23:28).
(3) The women who went with Jesus to Jerusalem for the feast.
(4) Those specifically nominated (Mt 27:56, Jn 19:25).
(1) "His mother" (Jn 19:25).
When someone brought Jesus to the crucifixion, John told the news to Jesus' mother and the other women.
② "the sister with His mother".
She was Salome (Mk 15:40, 16:1), the "mother of Zebedee's two sons" (Mt 27:56). At that time, Zebedee was probably already dead.
(3) "Mary the wife of Geroldaeus" (Jn 19:25).
Grotius is about Aleph (Mt 10:3). The Greek of these two names is translated from the Aramaic names.
④ "Mary Magdalene" (Mt 27:56, Lk 8:2).
⑤ "And Mary, the mother of James and Joses": she was more famous.
The last two were also present when Jesus was buried (Mt 27:61). When Jesus was resurrected, they were still predominant.
These women were courageous, faithful, loving and compassionate.
3. Peter and John
They were the only ones under the cross when Jesus was crucified, while all the other apostles fled.
XVI. Jesus was buried in the tomb
The Gospels use the word tomb of Jesus 32 times.
1. The custom of burial
(1) It was the Roman custom to leave the crucified on the cross as an object of contention between birds and animals.
Someone convinced Titus, the Roman Emperor, to take down the 3 bodies, which was not in accordance with Roman law.
(2) It was the custom of the Jews to bury.
Usually the friends and relatives of the Jews would come and ask for the bodies to be taken away. But Jesus' friends and relatives did not ask for it, nor did the eleven disciples, except for Joseph, who was a secret disciple, and he was not a friend or relative of Jesus. According to the Jewish law, it was not allowed to leave the body on the wood (Deut. 21:22-23).
(3) The cross was first laid flat, and then the nails were raised before the body was removed.
(4) "According to the rules of Jewish burial" (Jn 19:40).
They did not have the rule of using a coffin to bury the body.
2. Location of the tomb
(1) The Catholic Church considers it to be in the city of Jerusalem.
The "Church of the Holy Sepulchre" was built in the northwest part of the old city of Jerusalem, including the hill of Calvary.
When Constantine's mother went on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem at the age of 79, someone pointed out to her that the Church of the Holy Sepulchre was the tomb of Jesus. She immediately had the ground dug up and three crosses were unearthed. After the destruction of Jerusalem, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre was destroyed and built again and again until 1689, when the Russians and French started to rebuild the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, which has survived until today. It is said that the empty tomb is in the center of the church, but many people cannot find Mount Calvary in this church.
(2) Christian people believe that it is in the north gate of the old city, i.e., the northeast area outside the gate of Damascus (cf. Heb. 13:12).
This church was discovered in 1881 by Gen Gorden, a British general, and is called "Garden Tomb", which is "close to the city" (Jn 19:20). If we stand at the gate of Damascus and look at the hill opposite, we see on the hill two eyes of a man, hence the name "Calvary" (v. 17), behind Calvary's hill, which is very large. The tomb of Jesus was hewn out of the rock under the mountain (Mt 27:60).
3. Jesus was buried with the rich man
"Joseph took the body, wrapped it in clean linen, and laid it in his new tomb, which he had hewn in the rock. And he rolled the great stone to the entrance of the tomb, and went away." (Mt 27:59-60), Joseph, a rich man (v 57), went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. Nicodemus wrapped the body of Jesus with him (Jn 19:39-40), and together they did a wonderful thing by placing the body of Jesus in that new tomb, without fear of being implicated. This fulfills the words of Isaiah 53:9: "...... Who knows that when he dies he is buried with the rich man." How could Isaiah have foreseen that a rich man would give Jesus his new tomb? How could the words of scripture have been fulfilled if Joseph (not Joseph, the adopted father of Jesus, for he was a carpenter, not a rich man) had not wrapped Jesus' body and buried it in his own new tomb? If he had asked Pilate, and Pilate had not promised, the prophecy would not have been fulfilled. But all this is from God, so that we may be convinced.
4. The sepulchre
The sepulchre of the Jews was not natural, not dug in the earth, nor built of masonry, but hewn by hand; not from the top down, but hewn in parallel. The tomb of Jesus was "unburied" (Jn 19:41), which proves that it was clean.
(1) Inside the tomb.
Their tomb was divided into two parts, the entrance part on the left, with only a wooden bench for rest. The right part was enclosed by iron bars with locks on the bars.
The tomb is 2 meters high, and the two parts together are 4 meters long in total. On the 4 walls of the tomb there are niches Kukhin for mortuary use. At the entrance, there is an open space of 3 square meters inside the large rock for a coffin stopper.
Double bed: The bed of the tomb is finished and chiseled, about 2 meters long, where Jesus was buried. The two ends of the tomb bed have a foot-high "stone seat", like a stone bench, where the angel sat (Jn 20:12).
(2) The door of the tomb was quite low (Jn 20:5).
There was a window to the right of the door, and light penetrated into the tomb, and there was a ditch at the entrance. There is a sign outside the tomb on the right side that reads "Buried beside our Lord".
The biblical account of the burial of Jesus is more detailed than the historical account of the burial of anyone in the world.
(1) Fine linen
It was the Jewish custom to first wash the body (Acts 9:37) and then to wrap it tightly with a foot of fine linen (three or four times longer than ordinary linen) from the armpits to the ankles. 100 pounds of sticky spices (incense is ground into powdered wood, and myrrh is a fragrant gum, used to mix) were applied between the seams of the cloth. The spices were used to embalm the body and to act as an adhesive to make a hard shell out of the fine linen. The "fine linen" in John 19:40 is plural, referring to the wrapping of Jesus' body, starting with the fingers. Myrrh tightens the body so that the burial clothes cannot be taken off again. The "fine linen" in Matthew 27:59 is singular and refers to the outer wrapping of the body. The word "wrapped" in the two verses is also different in the original language.
(2) The body.
The body was placed on a long, narrow sarcophagus inside the tomb, with the head resting on the slightly elevated end of the sarcophagus as a pillow. Joseph and Nicodemus loved the Lord very much (Jn 19:38-40) and were not afraid to touch the corpse and become unclean (Num 19:11). They were both councilors of the Jewish Council, and neither dared to follow Jesus explicitly, but neither wanted anyone to harm him; after his death they were bold enough to confess the name of the Lord, because they were moved by seeing the circumstances of his death.
6. The Colossus (Mt 27:60)
It was a round rock, 4-5 feet high, weighing about 500-600 pounds, which was placed in the groove cut in front of the tomb door. It was easier to roll the stone to block the tomb because it was lower by the gate of the tomb (Mt 27:60), and Nicodemus and the servants were there (Jn 19:39-40). But it was much more difficult to roll the stone from in front of the tomb, and it took many people to roll it away. Probably, according to Jewish custom, a small stone (called dophag by the Jews) was used to support it by pressing the big stone, and as soon as the small stone was removed, the big stone would roll away.
7. Sealing the tomb (Mt 27:66)
They probably used a long rope to pass over the surface of the boulder and seal it on both sides (cf. Dan. 6:17). Most of the ancients used clay (cf. Ber 38:14) or wax as a seal.
Roman soldiers (Mt 27:65-66): "soldiers on guard", these soldiers were not temple guards, but Roman soldiers, about 30 men or less per team. They went to the tomb of Jesus and sealed it with the Emperor's jade seal, crossing the two ends with a long rope and adding a seal, which no one dared to break; if anyone dared to break the seal, he betrayed the Emperor. Unfortunately, only the enemy remembered that Jesus had prophesied his resurrection, and none of the disciples paid attention!
8. "Put the tomb in order" (Mt 27:66)
The captain of the guard was one of Pilate's most trusted centurions, who was said to be called Petroinus.
A Roman guard had four soldiers, and while one of the sentries was on duty, the other three were allowed to rest. They were to act as soon as they heard the alarm. Any soldier who left his post without permission was punished by death, especially at night when he was on guard. Rome used 4 shifts of soldiers, 4 men per shift (Acts 12:4), in shifts (3 hours per shift, taking turns to watch). It is possible that there would have been more soldiers guarding Jesus' tomb this time. They sent soldiers to guard the tomb because they were afraid that the disciples would steal the body (Mt 27:64).
17. We are crucified and buried with the Lord
1. "I have been crucified" (Gal. 6:14)
(1) The cross was originally a punishment.
It is painful for Christians to carry the cross, but crucifixion is even more painful, to the point of death. The Bible says that we are "already" crucified, but we are not crucified alone, but "with the Lord" (Gal. 2:20). This is not only true of Paul, but also of us (5:24).
(2) It is "our old man who is crucified with Him" (Rom 6:6).
We have been crucified with the Lord, so that the dead (us) do not react to sin.
(3) "See also that you are dead" (Rom. 6:11).
The original word for "see" is "reckon". We must first know (verse 6), and then count ourselves crucified. 2.
2. "Buried with Him" (Rom. 6:3-4)
"Buried": Not just crucified with the Lord, but "buried with Him". Many do not bury, but they smell of the dead; and they glory in the "beauty" of the old man.
Jesus did not just die, but He was buried, and when He was buried, He was uncontested.
We were "buried with Him by immersion into death" (v. 4), and then we were given the form of the new birth.
Once we believe, we have been crucified, died, buried, and resurrected with the Lord; but we should live our lives in the newness of life.
Chapter 4: The Seven Words of the Cross
Jesus spoke a total of seven words on the cross, which are known as the "Seven Words of the Cross". The word "seven" in the Bible means complete. Jesus did not speak more than what He said, and He did not refute what His enemies mocked. Every word that He spoke on the cross was very important. Every year, on the Feast of the Crucifixion of Jesus (some call it Good Friday), these seven sayings are preached in many places, or they are divided into seven people, each preaching one sentence. These seven sayings include salvation, Christ's atonement, glory and crown.
I. The first sentence
"At that moment Jesus said, 'Father, forgive them! For they know not what they do' ......." (Lk 23:34)
The first words of the cross are "the way to forgive sins". Therefore, as soon as we see the cross, we should know that because of Jesus' crucifixion, man's sins are forgiven.
The first words of Jesus on the cross were a prayer for His enemies. He did not ask the Father silently, but let them hear His prayer, but they would repent and be comforted. Jesus did not forgive them directly, but that they must repent and believe.
II. Second sentence
"Jesus said to him, 'Truly I tell you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.'" (Lk 23:43) The two robbers who were crucified with Jesus, one mocked Him; the other rebuked the one who mocked Him. This man repented because he heard Jesus speak on the cross about the "forgiveness of sins". He therefore came to Jesus with a trusting heart, saying, "Remember me, O Jesus, when Thy kingdom comes!" (v. 42) He did not understand the truth of salvation by faith. He always thought that he deserved to die for his sins, and asked Jesus to "remember" him, and to commemorate him when He comes again to establish His kingdom (the Kingdom). But to his surprise, Jesus said, "'Today' you will be with me in Paradise". He was saved because he believed that Jesus had accomplished the work of salvation on the cross, and he believed that Jesus was the Son of God, that He had not sinned, and that He had to rise from the dead, otherwise he would not have said, "The kingdom come". Since he believed that Jesus would come again to establish the kingdom, he certainly believed that He would rise again. By this simple faith, sincere trust and simple supplication, he was saved. Unfortunately, there are many people who have believed in Jesus for decades and still don't know if they are saved! To "believe" is to sincerely believe in Jesus' crucifixion and His resurrection from the dead, and you will be saved.
Thirdly, the third sentence
"When Jesus saw His mother and the disciple whom He loved (John) standing by, He said to His mother, 'Mother, behold your Son! And He said to the disciple, 'Look at your mother'! And from then on that disciple took her into his own house." (John 19:26-27) The word "mother" at the end of verse 26 is the original word for woman (see the small print). There was nothing disrespectful about this at the time, as the queen was repeatedly referred to as "woman" in Greek culture.
Jesus did not forget His family on the cross, let alone His beloved disciples. Jesus had honored His parents from childhood, and to the very end He left His mother in the care of John. This shows us that the cross does not only show salvation, but also points out filial piety and love. This is our proper attitude and duty. Unfortunately, some Christians only know how to love God, but they do not love or show filial piety to their families. Such people should be inspired by the example of Jesus to love God and love people and love their families.
John took Mary into his own house with his own mother, Salome, only after Jesus' death (vv. 32-35), so that Salome and John were not at the tomb when Jesus was buried (Lk. 23:55).
"took her into his own house" (Jn 19:27): Joseph probably died early and Jesus' brother did not believe, so John took Jesus' mother into his own place. "The word "his own house" is not in the original. John did not have a permanent home in Jerusalem, but only a temporary residence. It is said that Mary lived in Jerusalem for 12 years and died in 59 AD.
"About the beginning of Deutero, Jesus cried out with a loud voice, 'Eli! Eli! Ramasabbas the Great?' That is to say, 'My God! My God! Why have you forsaken me?'" (Mt 27:46, cf. Mk 15:34)
"About the beginning of the year": "The beginning of the year" means the time of the sacrifice for sin.
"Jesus cried out": The crucified often died unconscious, but Jesus "cried out".
"Eli, Eli" is the Hebrew word for a heavy cry, indicating a strong urgency; "Ramasabbas the Great" is the Aramaic word for the end of Jesus' great pain. The Aramaic word for "God" is "Eloi", which is similar to the sound of "Elijah".
The Israelites in general believed that if they called on Elijah in times of trouble, Elijah would come to the rescue of the innocent (Mark 15:36). It was believed that Elijah would return to save the people during the great tribulation, so at the Passover supper, a place was set aside for Elijah in every house in the hope that he would come.
From noon to the beginning of the day, Jesus did not speak, but now he shouted.
Jesus said this in fulfillment of the prophecy of Psalm 22:1. God had never forsaken Jesus. It was not until Jesus was crucified that God forsook Him. Why? Because He took on Himself the sins of the whole world (both past and future) and was crucified together. God saw the sins of the world, so He had to forsake Jesus for a while. This was the most difficult moment in Jesus' spirit.
V. Fifth sentence
"After these things, Jesus, knowing that all things had come to pass, in order that the words of the Scriptures might be fulfilled, said, 'I thirst'" (Jn 19:28). (John 19:28)
"After these things" is after verses 25-27, about a few hours later.
The phrase "I thirst" is a fulfillment of the prophecy in Psalm 22:15. After Jesus said "I thirst", "a vessel was filled with vinegar and placed there, and they took seaweed and dipped it in it, tied it to hyssop, and brought it to His mouth." (John 19:29) This time it was vinegar, the previous time it was wine, let's not get confused!
"Sea-velvet", some think that the sea-velvet was the stopper on the jar of vinegar.
"Hyssop" Caperplant, a grass born in clusters in the land of Canaan between gaps in walls or stones (Ex 12:22, Lev 14:4). The stem, about 1.5 feet tall.
Mark 15:36 says "tied to a reed" (a reed is the dried stem of hyssop); some believe that both the seaweed and hyssop were tied to a reed; others believe that there is only a slight difference between the hyssop and the gun, and that the reed mentioned by Matthew and Mark was originally a soldier's gun.
The blood of Jesus was shed on the cross, and it was extremely painful, especially in this "thirst". When the first man, Adam, sinned, God chastised him and made him "sweat profusely before he could feed himself" (Gen. 3:19). Since then, mankind has been suffering from "thirst" because of sin. This "thirst" of Jesus compensates for our thirst so that we can drink the living water of life and never be thirsty again. Jesus suffered physically so that our hearts might be satisfied (Jn 4:14).
VI. Sixth sentence
"When Jesus had tasted the vinegar, he said, 'It is finished!' And he bowed his head and committed his soul to God." (Jn 19:30)
The original word "tasted" is "received" (Mt 27:34). "And he said, 'It is finished'!"
Thank God! Jesus was crucified and everything was "done". He kept the law for us on earth, fulfilling the requirements of the law and redeeming us from its curse (Gal. 3:13). Of course, this "fulfillment" includes many aspects of "completion": the suffering is over, the Father's work is done, the prophecies of the prophets are fulfilled, the prophecies of the Old Testament are fulfilled, and the power of the devil is defeated; but the main thing is the completion of the work of salvation, the completion of salvation. Because of the crucifixion of Jesus, our sins are forgiven, and if we will trust, we will be saved.
"Then he bowed his head": This proves that Jesus kept his head up.
Usually the crucified were dying weak, and their heads were bowed down to their chests.
"Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, 'Father, into Your hands I commit my spirit!' And when he had said this, his breath was broken." (Lk 23:46)
This statement is a fulfillment of the prophecy of Psalm 31:5. We have no choice but to die, for we do not want to die, we are afraid of death; but Jesus' death was different, for He voluntarily "delivered" Himself to God, for He had said: "No one has taken my life from me, but I have given it up of my own accord. I have authority to give it up and authority to take it back. This is the command I have received from My Father." (John 10:18) His last words on the cross are a little different from the previous statement. The first words were just "saying", while the fourth (Mt 27:46) and here (Mt 27:50) are "crying out and saying". He cried out with His last breath, so that everyone might hear and know that He had given His life for the world.
"Father": Jesus called Himself "God" when He bore the sins of the people on the cross, and He called Himself "Father" at the end of the cross.
"And his breath was broken": The original is made up of the words "gave up" and "spirit". "I give up my spirit": the original is "spirit". Jesus gave up his spirit (death) voluntarily (Jn 10:18).
If we combine the order of the fact of Jesus' crucifixion with the seven famous sayings He spoke on the cross, we see everywhere the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy. Of course, Jesus spoke the words in order to bring about the fulfillment of the words of the Scriptures. Although this was from Jesus Himself, it is amazing that even what the enemy did and said fulfilled the prophecies of the scriptures. Remember that Jesus was crucified by the Romans, not by the Jews, and that it was carried out according to the Roman law, not according to the Jewish rules. Thus, the fulfillment of the prophecies makes us wonder even more, so that we cannot help but believe that the Scriptures are implied by God, and that we can be saved and receive eternal blessings by faith!
"The Seven Words of the Cross": 3 sentences were spoken before the darkness; 3 sentences were spoken after the darkness, and one sentence was spoken near the darkness. The 1st, 4th, and 7th sentences are 3 words of prayer. The first 3 sentences concern others, and the last 4 sentences are about oneself. The 4th sentence is about spiritual grief, and the 5th sentence is about physical suffering. The 4th and 7th sentences Jesus said aloud. The first and last prayers are called "Father".
Chapter 5: The Cross is a Torture
The cross is the center of Christianity. John 19 is the chapter with the most accounts of the cross, 15 times.
The cross is a torture, and our Lord Jesus suffered on the cross as a torture. He not only suffered physically, but His soul also suffered, and His spirit also suffered.
I. Jesus suffered soul and body on the cross
1. The body suffered
We all understand this. Jesus hung on the cross, and His body certainly suffered (Ps 22:16, Jas 12:10). Our bodies sinned for pleasure, so Jesus had to suffer bodily pain on our behalf; our minds sinned, so Jesus' head had to wear a crown of thorns; our mouths sinned, so Jesus' mouth suffered from thirst; our feet sinned, so Jesus' feet had to be crucified. Jesus' whole body suffered because we are all sinful. Jesus suffered for us. Although Jesus' body suffered terribly, the Bible tells us to grieve for His suffering; the epistle does not describe the suffering of His body, but only says, "He exalts Himself by the cross".
2. Suffering of the soul
Jesus did not suffer only in His body, but also in His soul. Man has a soul, and this soul includes the mind, will, and feelings. When Jesus was crucified, He had to suffer in His mind, will, and feelings, and He refused to drink the wine that would make Him anesthetized with "bitter gall" (Mt 27:34). He willingly suffered the pain of His soul, and He preferred to drink the cup of God's bitterness rather than the cup of stupor.
We sin and are slaves to sin, and slaves are the most disgraced. Jesus was hung on the cross of sinful slavery and suffered shame in order to free us who have been slaves all our lives for fear of death.
We sin and sin strips us of our garments of glory and makes us feel naked. Jesus was stripped before He was hung; He was stripped again before He came to the cross, leaving Jesus almost naked. He felt extremely humiliated in His soul for our sins (Ps. 89:45, 51), but He "despised the humiliation" (Heb. 12:2).
A week before His crucifixion, Jesus spoke of the agony of His soul: "Now it is my soul that is sorrowful" (Jn 12:27). He also said this during His prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane: "My soul is very sorrowful, and I am almost dead." (Mt 26:38 original) Isaiah 53:10-12 has said 3 times that He would give Himself (soul). He was on the cross, and His soul suffered greatly for us.
3. The Spirit Suffered
Jesus was always in communion with God, and God was always with Him (John 8:16, 29, 11:41-42). Jesus needed God's presence even more on the cross, but God forsook Him (Mt 27:46), causing His spirit to suffer terribly. The Holy Spirit left Jesus, and Satan mocked Him (Ps. 22:11-13). His Spirit suffered greatly, and He was tortured for us on the cross, so that we who believe in Him "will not be condemned" (Rom. 8:1).
II. The Image of the Suffering of Jesus' Crucifixion
The crucifixion of Jesus began in the middle of the 5th century. This is the idea of the GEL, which depicts the meaning of Jesus' death alone, not His suffering.
In the 10th century there were paintings of the crucifixion with a mixed reality.
In the 11th century there was a light relief carving of the suffering.
In the 14th century, there was a movable carved image of suffering.
It was only in the 17th century that the Spanish depicted the actual crucifixion of Jesus.
These images are very different from the New Testament's intent of Jesus' crucifixion. The Bible wants us to worship not the dead Jesus; we are to worship Christ who is glorified and not suffering.
III. The Instruments of Capital Punishment
The cross was a cruel instrument of torture in the Roman Empire. It originally began in Phoenicia, and later spread to Greece and Rome. There are several styles of torture instruments.
1. The "I" shape (solitary stake)
Originally, the tip of the stake was driven under the prisoner's ribs into the chest and diaphragm; or the prisoner was made to lie on his back on the stake, and he was made to stretch his arms and legs parallel to the stake, tied with a rope, and then the stake was erected and planted on the ground.
Some say, according to the words of Peter (Acts 5:30, 10:39, 1 Pet. 2:24) and Paul (Acts 13:29, Gal. 3:13), "Christ was hung on a 'log', not in the form of a cross, but a straight piece of wood, with both arms stretched out over his head and joined together to be nailed. The lifting of the serpent by Moses in the wilderness was a foreshadowing of Jesus being hung on a log."
Let us note that the Old Testament does not have the sign of the cross, only the wood is used to prefigure the cross. It is true that in Persia, Egypt, India and other countries, most of the ancient punishments were done with wooden stakes. Now Mormonism also uses wooden stakes instead of crosses.
2. The shape of the cross (with two wooden stakes)
As the name implies, the cross is "cross" shaped. In ancient Roman times, they used a frame to execute prisoners, and there were several types of frames: T, X, and 10. They tied the prisoners or nailed them to the cross.
3. "Y" shape (three stakes)
(1) The death penalty for slaves or the lowest level of prisoners in the Roman Empire was crucifixion, but the death penalty for prisoners of Roman nationality was by beheading or giving them the opportunity to kill themselves. Paul was a citizen of Roman nationality, so he was beheaded; Peter was a Jew, so he was to be crucified (he asked to be crucified upside down).
This was a most cruel punishment. In Roman times, the instrument of crucifixion was also used in Egypt, Persia, Babylon, and other countries. It was even more cruel than cutting pieces of flesh. The cutting of flesh is cruel, but this punishment causes the prisoner to die quickly, while crucifixion causes the prisoner to die slowly.
The cross was first placed on the ground, the prisoner was told to lie on his back, the prisoner was tied or nailed to it (cf. Lk 24:39-40), and then the cross was lifted up. Sometimes the crucifix was put up first, and then the prisoner was nailed to it. Sometimes a small cross was protruded from the middle of a straight piece of wood and the prisoner was mounted on it, as in the Qing Dynasty's "torture", to delay his death. The Jews hated this punishment because the crucified person often died only after a few days. When a prisoner died, his body was not immediately coffined, but left exposed in space to decay and fall down to be eaten by wild animals and birds. If removed, they were thrown in the public garbage and burned.
(2) The Crucifixion of Jesus.
The Roman soldiers nailed Jesus' hands with long nails and immediately spurted out a lot of blood. The hundred-plus pound man was nailed to both hands (some say to the wrist joints) and to his feet, and when he was exposed to the sun, his blood could not circulate and flow throughout his body, so he was extremely hot; his veins ruptured, his mouth became very thirsty, his head became dizzy, and he was convulsed at times. Jesus was crucified at 9:00 a.m. and died at 3:00 p.m.
(3) Before King Constantine (272-337) came to power in 316 A.D., Rome persecuted the church ten times. After his conversion, King Constantine abolished the torture of crucifixion because he respected Jesus.
Usually we only know that crucifixion is suffering, but when have we ever experienced the suffering of this torture? In the breaking of bread, we remember that the Lord suffered so much for our sins that He died, the death of the cross! We should think of the Lord's suffering on the cross when we suffer most, so that we may be comforted. We should think every moment of the Lord's crucifixion for the sake of our sins. The cross is not just "suffering", it is "death"!
Chapter 6: The Cross and Salvation
I. Salvation by faith
When we speak of salvation and the gospel, we must speak of the cross. If we do not speak of the cross, it is "another gospel" (Gal. 1:6). Paul goes on to say, "But if we, the messengers from heaven, preach to you a gospel different from that which we preached to you, let him be accursed ......." (vv. 8-9) What is the "other gospel"? The Galatian church heard Paul preach the cross, and then someone else preached the law to them, telling them not only to rely on the crucifixion of Jesus, but also to keep the law in order to be saved. This is called the "other gospel". "O ignorant Galatians, who have confounded you, when the crucifixion of Jesus Christ was painted alive before your eyes ......." (Gal. 3:1-2) We cannot be saved by good works, mortification or merit; we can only be saved by God's grace through faith in Jesus' death and resurrection. Apart from Jesus' crucifixion there is no salvation to be had.
II. The Cross and the Precious Blood
If we speak only of the cross and not the blood, this is a "gospel without blood". This is very dangerous! The blood of Jesus shed on the cross is the "Precious Blood" because He was without sin. Jesus was crucified and shed His blood until He died, so the death on the cross was a bloody death. Some people think that Jesus did not die on the cross, but only fainted for a while and then woke up.
This is heresy. If Jesus did not really die, how could He have risen? Those who say this are saying it because they do not believe in the resurrection of Jesus. We cannot say this. We must believe that Jesus shed His blood until He died. The blood He shed was for the forgiveness of our sins. Without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness of sins. Therefore, while we preach about the cross, we must preach about the shedding of the blood of Jesus and the atonement of sins by the blood.
3. Those who hang on the cross are cursed
"As Christ was cursed for us, so he redeemed us from the curse of the law, for it is written, 'Cursed is everyone who hangs on a log.'" (Gal. 3:13) As we have said before, our sins were all on Jesus alone, so God forsook Him. Jesus was sinless so that He could make atonement for our sins: "God made Him who was without sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." (2 Cor. 5:21) The cross is substitutionary atonement. We sinned and should have been punished, but we have a Mediator, Jesus Christ: "He made a redemptive sacrifice for our sins, not for ours alone, but for the sins of the whole world." (1 John 2:2) In ancient times, the laws of some countries provided that a person who committed a sin could be punished by someone else in his place. However, the substitute must be a person who has not sinned himself, and if he has sinned himself, he cannot make atonement for the sins of others. Therefore, God had to make the sinless one (Jesus) to be cursed in our place in order for us to be saved. God is love, and He does not want one to sink, but all to be saved; but God is also righteous, and He cannot but curse and punish us sinners. If He forgives us unconditionally, how can He be considered righteous? Satan would also say that God is unjust! But God uses a substitutionary method of atonement: He makes Him who is without sin to be sin for us, and this is God's righteousness. This is God's love, and Satan cannot say that God is unjust, because if we believe, we are all redeemed without exception and have eternal life for free. However, the problem arises again. How can one person atone for the sins of one person, but not for the sins of millions of people in an inexhaustible way? Please note! This is a "question of value". For example, a coin is of equal value to another coin; but a priceless diamond is not equal to a penny. If that priceless diamond were sold, I wonder how many pennies could be exchanged for it! Jesus is not just a man, He is God. Nothing can compare with His value; that is why He was able to atone for the sins of all mankind, for each of us is of little value, like a penny, but Jesus is of great value: "For the redemption of his life is of great value" (Psalm 49:8-9). How should we thank our God that we have a most exalted Savior who has redeemed us from the depths of sin!
IV. The Cross Became a Sign of Glory
In Roman times, the cross was a sign of torture, but now no one looks at it as horrible anymore. Instead, the cross is used as a sign of "salvation", "life saving", "lifesaving", etc., such as the Red Cross, the cross ambulance, the cross lifeboat, etc. (However, the "cross" used by the Red Cross, etc. However, the "cross" used by the Red Cross was square, whereas the original cross was long). This terrible instrument of punishment became the most glorious symbol of the crucifixion of Jesus. It is remembered all over the world, especially in Christianity, where the cross is the only glorious sign.
V. What the death of Christ accomplished
1. Proof of love for sinners
John 3:16, Romans 5:8, 1 John 3:16, 4:9, God's gift of salvation (1 Tim. 4:10).
This word occurs 77 times in the Bible, the Hebrew word is kapher.
The Old Testament atonement (Lev 4:13-20, 6:2-7), atonement, is a covering, not to be seen (Isa 38:17), a temporary forgiveness (Rom 3:24-25), in order to fulfill the work of eternal sin removal.
3. Redemption sacrifice (1Jn 2:2)
The Old Testament people broke the law and the world sinned, but Christ's death was the atoning sacrifice to satisfy the demands of God's righteousness.
The Old Testament mercy seat (Heb. 9:5): The law in the ark of the covenant was covered. On the Day of Atonement, the Jews flicked blood at the mercy seat before the altar (Lev. 16:14), changing the judgment seat into a mercy seat (Heb. 9:11-15).
When Christ died, the throne of God became the throne of grace (Heb. 4:14-16). The throne of grace hilasterion is the same root as the redemption sacrifice hilasmos (1 John 2:2, 4:10).
The Bible does not use this word, but there is this fact (Jn 1:29). Substitution, expressing the substitution accomplished by the death of Christ, is to die on behalf of others and to lay down one's life for the sheep (Jn 10:11).
It means to buy back with a heavy price (1Pe 1:18-19).
6. The ransom price (Mt 20:28, 1Ti 2:6)
The ransom price is for God, not for Satan. The Greek word Lutrosis is the ransom paid for the freedom of a slave. This word contains 3 meanings.
It means "to buy in the market", and agora means market. Man is in sin, dead under the penalty of sin (Jn 3:18-19, Ro 6:23), and a slave who has been sold into sin (Ro 7:14).
(2) exagorazo: means "to buy all from the market" (Gal 3:13, 4:5, cf. Eph 5:16, Col 4:5), a complete redemption.
(3) tutroo: It means to release from bondage or freedom (Lk 24:21, Tit 2:14, Heb 2:14-15, 1Pe 1:18), not like the Old Testament "temporary covering", but "bearing our sins forever" (Isa 53:7-12).
(1) Not only forgiveness (Mt 26:28): Forgiveness, not condemnation, is good enough.
(2) No longer imputed to the world because of Christ's death (2 Cor. 5:18-19).
(3) At the death of Jesus, "the veil of the temple was rent in two from top to bottom". (Mt 27:51) The divide between God and man was removed. In the future, there will be no need for the high priest to make atonement for man's sins every year!
(4) It is not "God and us" who are reconciled, but "us and God" (2Co 5:18-20, Eph 2:16, Col 1:20).
Originally we sinned and caused God to leave us, but now we are reconciled to God through the death of Christ. It is not God who changes, but is changed by Christ's salvation. It is a complete change of man, and the two are one (Rom 5:10-11). Because of Christ's death, we dare to reach out and shake hands with God.
(5) Pleased by God.
We have sinned against others, and to be forgiven by them is a great favor, let alone that God will be pleased with us!
Jesus was crucified with both hands outstretched to the sides, indicating that the salvation Jesus accomplished on the cross was universal to all people, from east to west, from south to north; from Old Testament to New Testament; from Jewish to Gentile, all were gathered. He points to the past with one hand and to the future with the other. If you will believe, no matter how great your sins are, they can be forgiven by the blood of Jesus shed through the crucifixion. There is no distinction here between Jew and Gentile, Chinese and foreigner, wise or foolish, rich or poor, if you will turn from your sins to the true God, and ask God in simple faith to forgive your sins through the crucifixion of Jesus, and believe in His resurrection from the dead, you will be saved, forever! You don't have to spend a penny, you don't have to do any work, but accept the salvation that has been accomplished, and you will be saved forever! The cross is sufficient for the world to show that God is both righteous and loving. We should be touched by His love!
Chapter 7: The Cross and the Christian
Some people think that we speak of the cross only to unbelievers; it is of little use to believers, which is a great mistake. Know that the cross is not only for unbelievers, but also for believers and preachers. From the time of our salvation until we return to our heavenly home (or until the Lord returns), the Savior on the cross has been saving us, is our power, is our glory, and we are used all the days of our lives!
I. Our position
Some believers know a little about the cross and they know its usefulness to us, but because they do not know the truth of the cross deeply enough, they make many mistakes. Some people often pray and ask God to crucify them. Their heart is right, but the Bible never calls us to crucify ourselves, for when we believe, our position changes, and we are already crucified: "I have been crucified with Christ" (Gal. 2:20). It is Paul himself who has been crucified. "Whoever belongs to Christ Jesus has crucified the flesh with the evil passions and lusts of the flesh." (Gal. 5:24) This is the crucifixion of our "flesh" and our "evil passions and desires". "But I will boast of nothing else, but of the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ. By this cross the world is crucified as far as I am concerned, and I am crucified as far as the world is concerned." (Gal. 6:14) This is the world crucified with me. There are three enemies of the Christian, the devil and what Galatians calls self (flesh and evil lusts) and the world. To all three of these enemies we have been crucified, and this is our position. The power of the cross is alive in us if we stand firm, face everything squarely, and experience the death of the cross!
We are not crucified by ourselves, but we are to accept the fact of what has been accomplished. We are not crucified alone, but "with Christ" (Rom 6:6, Gal 2:20), and it is Jesus who brings us to "crucify together". We are not crucified by what we see, but by what we believe, by the word of God, by the fact of the cross, and then by the Holy Spirit we are cured of the wickedness of our bodies (Col. 3:5).
II. Carrying our own cross
1. Not carrying the cross of the Lord
Some people say that we should carry the cross of the Lord. There is a verse that says, "I bear the cross of the Lord", but the Bible never tells us to bear the cross of the Lord. Before Jesus was crucified, He was to "bear His own cross" (John 19:17). Later, "Simon the Cullinan, the father of Alexander and Rufus, came down from the country, and passed through the place, and they forced him to go with them, that he might carry the cross of Jesus." (Mark 15:21) Based on this verse, some tell us to carry the cross of Jesus. Note that this was a wooden cross at the time, and Simon of Cyrene, who came from Africa, was "forced" to carry the wooden cross of Jesus. He only carried the wooden cross once, not the spiritual cross of Jesus "every day". Jesus' cross does not need to be carried by us, nor does anyone else's cross need to be carried by us. Listen to the words of Jesus: "Then Jesus said to the people, 'If anyone wants to come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.'" (Lk 9:23) Jesus did not say, "Take up 'my' cross daily," but "'his' cross ". Luke 14:27 also says, "Whoever does not carry his 'own' cross and follow me cannot be my disciple." God has given us different crosses. We know that although the cross is painful, the cross is more God's will to interrupt His own will, to give up ourselves. Many people are willing to give up external things rather than give up themselves. Note that the more you give up external things, the bigger you become, and you always feel that you are more spiritual than others. We should deny ourselves completely: first we must have the heart to deny ourselves, and God will arrange the cross for us to carry. Although we can take up the cross, or we can run away from it, if we have the will to deny ourselves, we should obey and not run away.
Cross-bearing is not death, but a willingness to die. When Jesus spoke of the cross, He always linked the words "denial of self" and "loss of life" together. By the loss of life He did not mean the life of the flesh, but the life of the soul. It is not the life of the crucified soul, but the life of the lost soul.
2. Related to our souls
In the four Gospels, Jesus speaks of the cross at least four times, and all four times are related to our soul (mind, will, and emotions).
(1) The cross and the "love" of the soul.
"He who loves father and mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. ...... He who does not carry his cross and follow Me is not worthy of Me. He who gains life will lose it, and he who loses his life for my sake will gain it." (Mt. 10:37-39) Jesus said above that he would be "estranged" from his family. This is "estrangement" for the Lord, and this is the cross. According to our soul, we love our loved ones. But because our families oppose our faith and service, then we must remove our natural love for them, and we must not love them more than we love the Lord. This is carrying the cross, and losing the life of the soul. It is about the love of the soul, giving up something.
(2) The cross and the "self" of the soul.
"Then Jesus said to his disciples, 'If anyone wants to come after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will have it." (Mt 16:24-25) The second time Jesus mentions the cross is about the "self" of the soul. Our self is our soul, and our soul is ourselves. The greatest renunciation for the Lord is the renunciation of self; the renunciation of self is a "daily" renunciation, not a once-for-all renunciation. The second meaning of the cross is to deny oneself every day.
(3) The cross and the "love of the world" of the soul.
"Think of Lot's wife. Whoever desires to preserve his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will save it." (Lk 17:32-33) (Lk 17:32-33) The 3rd meaning of bearing the cross is not to love the world. We know that Lot's wife was a lover of the world. Although she did not take a step backward toward Sodom, she "looked back" and lost the life of her soul. Let us not take the world to heart: "...... And when your house is taken away from you, bear it willingly, knowing that you have a more beautiful and long-lasting house." (Heb. 10:34) The word "willingly" here means "joyfully" in the original. When you are robbed of your home, you should not only bear it willingly, but also with joy, for there is a more beautiful home in heaven for us. Paul did not only "count all things as loss", but he "forsook all things for Him, and counted them but dung" (Phil. 3:8). (Philippians 3:8) The third meaning of the cross is not to love the world.
(4) The cross and the "power" of the soul.
"Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains one grain, but if it dies, it bears many seeds. He who loves his life will lose it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it to eternal life." (Jn 12:24-25) The most glorious time of Jesus' life came: first, when several people believed in Jesus after the resurrection of Lazarus (Jn 12:11); and second, when the Hellenists were willing to see Jesus (Jn 12:20-21). It seemed that the cross was not needed at this time, but it was at this time that Jesus spoke of the cross: "If I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw all men to me." (v. 32) To be "lifted up" is to be crucified. Jesus did not speak of Himself alone, but He taught us not to rely on our own power to bear fruit. "If anyone serves me, let him follow me." (v. 26) Follow the Lord, serve the Lord, and take up the cross. We are to serve the Lord, not relying on the talents, knowledge, eloquence, wisdom, or even gifts and abilities of our souls. If we serve God with our souls, we will not bear fruit, but if we "hate our lives in this world, we will keep them (the life of our souls) unto eternal life." (John 12:25)
To bear the cross is to give up: to give up the love of family; to give up the love of self; to give up the love of the world; to give up the love of the power of the soul. It is painful, so to bear the cross is to give up something, to give up painfully, to be willing to die, to lose the life of the soul.
3. "Take up his cross daily and follow me" (Lk 9:23)
We all have to carry our crosses, but not all of us have the same cross. I have my cross, you have your cross, and he has his cross. We can't say, "My cross is too heavy, so I'd rather carry someone else's cross. There was a sister who always thought that her cross was heavier than others', so she longed to carry it instead of others. One day she saw many crosses in her dream, so she picked a "good" one to carry. However, after picking and choosing, her original cross was the lighter one. The cross is suffering, and Jesus suffered much, but He suffered even more on the cross: "My energy is dried up like a tile; my tongue is pressed against my teeth. Thou hast set me in the dust of the land of the dead." (Psalm 22:15) We are not to carry the cross of Jesus, nor does God call us to carry the cross of others; we are to carry our own cross, which God has given us to carry, so that we may deal with our own selves. Some people suffer, and they can bear it; but if they suffer long, they cannot bear it any longer. Some people become cold toward God and do not love the Lord anymore. Please note that Jesus calls us to carry our "own" cross "daily" and follow Him, otherwise we are not worthy to be His disciples. There was a preacher who preached to millions of people, and many of them wept and repented, but his wife laughed and laughed from below, which was embarrassing! When people asked the preacher why his wife did this to him, he said, "She is my cross," which God gave him to carry "every day. Brothers and sisters, your suffering is different from others', but remember that behind the cross is the crown; to push away the cross is to push away the crown. Some people have bad husbands, some have bad wives, some have bad children, and some have bad parents; their own family members do not have the same heart, but do many things to humiliate the Lord. If we ask the Lord many times to change them, but the thorn will always leave us. In this way, we should obey God, because God gave us this cross to carry, and carry it every day, in order to deal with our own selves and to purify us. If we resent God, we are not cross bearers; if we say that we will carry the cross every day, then we should gladly accept the pain of the cross.
3. The Cross' Treatment
The cross is "suffering", but more than that, the cross is "death". Jesus was not only suffering when He was crucified, but He was crucified to death. "Death" is the purpose of crucifixion. When we suffer terribly, we should know that it is the cross. When we are misunderstood or attacked to the point of extreme difficulty, our tempers flare up, and in this way, we are refusing to suffer the cross against us. Sometimes we learn to be patient, but we cannot endure much, and then we lose our temper again, or we keep complaining against people and against God. If we don't use the cross to deal with ourselves, we will lose our temper. We can't learn patience, we don't learn patience. We must not only "swallow our voices and bear our anger," but we must also be "silent and silent. "Only "silence and no anger" is the only way to die. If we scold a dead person or beat a dead person, will he react? Will he get up and fight with you or hit you? Everyone knows that this is impossible. Sometimes we treat a brutal and unreasonable person with a negative attitude, or look at him as if he were dead, and become slightly more serene ourselves. But please note that we should not treat him as dead; "You should also look (count) 'yourselves' dead toward sin" (Rom 6:11). This is the problem with people.
Now we have to look at ourselves: when you are about to sin, remember that you are already crucified with Christ. The question is: "Therefore do not allow sin to reign in your mortal body, that you may obey the lusts of the body." (Romans 6:12) We are dead in status, but we are actually "impervious" to sin. Whenever we are about to sin, we are to reckon ourselves dead by the Holy Spirit with the cross: "So you also should consider yourselves dead to sin, but 'reckon' yourselves alive to God in Christ Jesus. ' that you are alive." (Romans 6:11) When you truly "count" yourself "dead," you will have victory over the flesh and over sin by the cross. A dead person can no longer be a sinner, so we must count ourselves dead every day.
Remembering the Lord
Every time we gather for the breaking of bread, we commemorate the Lord's death (1 Cor. 11:23-29). Some people commemorate the Lord once a month (by eating the Lord's Supper), but the apostles commemorated the Lord at first every day (Acts 2:46), at least once a week: "On the first day of the seventh month, when we met to break bread ......." (Acts 20:7) We should remember all our lives that the Lord died for us crucified. Whenever we remember the Lord from our hearts, we shall renew our strength.
We commemorate the Lord's crucifixion by remembering from our hearts. The crosses inside and outside the chapel are inherited from the Catholic Church; sisters like to hang gold crosses, but the crosses are actually wooden, and they are not hung, but carried on the back. We should remember the Lord from our hearts, and never make the material cross an idol.
V. The Way of the Cross
A Christian should follow the way of the cross, but this is not an easy path to follow. The cross draws us away from the world, breaks our will, and cuts off what we love most in our hearts.
If we know the power of the cross, we will have the strength to die to the world so that the power of the cross will be manifested in us.
The way of the cross is a path of suffering, and moreover a path of death, which is ultimately death. Our Lord came down from heaven and chose the way of the cross. He walked the way of the cross all His life, and finally He was crucified and died. Thousands of Christians have followed the Lord in the way of the cross, and even laid down their lives for Him. If we want to do God's will, we should walk the way of the cross, the way of the blood of the cross, the way of the fire of the cross, and the way of the death of the cross.
6. Preach Christ crucified
Some do not preach the cross; some preach only the empty cross, but we should preach Christ crucified: "But we preach Christ crucified ......." (1 Cor. 1:23) "For I have made up my mind to know nothing else among you but Jesus Christ and Him crucified." (1 Cor. 2:2) Paul did not preach the mystery of God to the Corinthian church in the wise city of Corinth with high words and great wisdom (1 Cor. 2:1), but he preached Christ crucified with the power of God. Once upon a time there was a famous circus performer in England named George Bennard, who later repented of his faith in Christ and stopped performing in circuses, and preached the gospel for the name of Christ. Once he went to a place to preach and was sleeping under a family's porch at night. He heard hymns being sung inside. He thought, "If I had not been here for the sake of the gospel, I would not have slept here; I would have been respected by millions of people, and I would have lived a comfortable life; but now I sleep here for the sake of preaching the gospel of Christ. So he wrote a poem, and threw it into the house of the family. The next day he left there, and went away to preach elsewhere. A year later he returned to this town. One night he was sleeping again under the porch where he had slept a year before. Soon he heard a psalm being played and sung inside, the same psalm he had written a year before. So he pushed the door in, and joined hands with the family and sang his song "The Old Rugged Cross," which became famous throughout the world.
We should preach the cross, and more importantly, Christ on the cross. We should not stop preaching the cross just because it does not please the ear. In the age of scientific progress, we should preach the cross, and exalt Christ on the cross, until we meet the Lord at his stand.
Done on March 21, 1985
Revised February 23, 2005
Author: Lin Xian Gao