Reflection: It’s been three hours. The man who’d healed tens of thousands, who taught about love, who’d never spoken a false word, who was overjoyed when the children came to him, and who’d come on a mission from God to reconcile his lost children to him is being slowly tortured to death in the most wicked form of capital punishment ever devised by humankind.
But when the clock
ticks over to twelve all the mockery stops dead in its tracks. Jaws drop and mouths open wordlessly. Universally, a deep sense of foreboding fills every heart as the blazing midday sun ceases to shine, and darkness covers the whole land. This was a supernatural event. They’re killing the son of God. The light of the world is about to be extinguished. What better way to mark his passing than all of wicked humanity plunged into the dread of darkness?
‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’ cries Jesus, the ransom, the substitution, the Passover lamb slain for the sins of the world, as God himself enters into his own wrath so that we might be spared. This is the moment of judgment, the moment when the son of God bears the wrath of God as the
sacrifice for the sins of the whole world.
But Jesus isn’t forsaken. As he breaks the silence with this anguished cry, every Jew, despite themselves would have recognised these words from Psalm 22:1. And in the darkness, voicelessly in their minds, the words of David’s psalm would have continued until they heard, “For he has not despised or scorned the suffering of the afflicted one; he has not hidden his face from him but has listened to his cry for help.” (Psalm 22:24) Prophecy fulfilled. Words written 1000 years before explaining this day. The
Messiah, the son of David, explaining in the prophetic words of David, with his dying breath, the momentous nature of what is happening in this moment, explaining his triumph.
Question: Why not take a moment to meditate over the words of Psalm 22? They are the words Jesus would have us view this moment on the cross through.
Prayer: Dear God, we praise you that Jesus placed his trust in you alone! Thank you that you were his strength. You did not forsake him on the cross. Through Jesus’
suffering, you brought salvation for us all. I praise and thank you for the salvation Jesus achieved that day. In his name I pray, Amen.
We are reading the Bible with Paul White until 7th April.