2000-04-22 - Crucifixion
God has shown man throughout scripture that he needed a sacrifice for his sins. God had declared in the Old Testament that animal sacrifices under the law were not pleasing to Him as they could not satisfy His will and holiness. The ransom for mans' soul was so great that only God could provide the atonement for him.
God allowed Jesus to suffer because his sacrifice satisfied the divine holiness of God. Through Jesus' death, God's will was accomplished completely.
John 1:29 On the morrow he seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold, the Lamb of God, that taketh away the sin of the world!
The atoning death of Jesus is central to all scripture.
Acts 13:27 For they that dwell in Jerusalem, and their rulers, because they knew him not, nor the voices of the prophets which are read every Sabbath, fulfilled them by condemning him.
See also Luke 24:46-47 and Romans 3:21-26
Jesus paid the price for our sins through a horrible death on a cross. We need to look back to the Garden of Gethsemane to watch as the situation developed. Jesus had been up all night praying. Jesus had prayed so intensely that a condition called haematidrosis occurred where the blood vessels dilate and rupture and sweat becomes blood droplets. At this point his body began the process of dehydration.
After the meeting with Pilate, Jesus is scourged. During this era the Romans would use a flagram, a wooden handle with long leather strips attached. Small metal balls were attached to the end of the leather strips. Jesus was then stripped of his clothing and whipped on his back, his arms and legs. The initial whipping would cut the skin, however after repeated blows the underlying muscle would be cut. When the centurion determined the prisoner was near death the beating was stopped. Though the Jews had a law prohibiting more than forty blows, it is doubtful the Romans adhered to it. The Roman guards then placed a robe on Jesus' body along with a crown of thorns on His head. Great bleeding from the thorns would occur as the head is one of the most vascular regions in the body. After striking him, they tore the robe from his body, which would have begun to adhere to the clotting wounds. Jesus' clothing is returned and he is forced to carry his own cross. The long wooden beam would have weighed approximately 110 pounds. Fluid has begun to accumulate around his lungs due to blood loss and shock. They arrive at Golgotha, a place where orphans who die in the streets are buried and the bodies of criminals are left to decay in an open ditch. Jesus is thrown down naked on the cross, heavy wrought iron nails are hammered into his wrists and feet causing pressure to the median nerve so that even the gentle blowing of air would cause excruciating pain. Jesus must push himself upward in order to exhale air. Due to the multiple injuries to his body, every muscle begins to cramp and fluid increases around the heart.
Psalm 22:14 I am poured out like water, And all my bones are out of joint: My heart is like wax; It is melted within me.
With one last effort Jesus pushes his legs up to exhale air and cries "It is finished."
Most victims of crucifixion would remain on the cross for up to four days before they died and die of suffocation, but due to the trauma to his body Jesus died after few hours likely of heart failure. To ensure that Jesus was dead, the centurion forced a lance to pierce his side thrust upward toward his heart.
John 19:34 Howbeit one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and straightway there came out blood and water.
There was an escape of the fluid that had formed around the heart causing blood then water to escape.
Isaiah 52:13-53:12 Behold, my servant shall deal wisely, he shall be exalted and lifted up, and shall be very high. 14 Like as many were astonished at thee (his visage was so marred more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men), 15 so shall he sprinkle many nations; kings shall shut their mouths at him: for that which had not been told them shall they see; and that which they had not heard shall they understand. 53:1 Who hath believed our message? and to whom hath the arm of Jehovah been revealed? 2 For he grew up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him. 3 He was despised, and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and as one from whom men hide their face he was despised; and we esteemed him not. 4 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows; yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. 5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. 6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and Jehovah hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. 7 He was oppressed, yet when he was afflicted he opened not his mouth; as a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and as a sheep that before its shearers is dumb, so he opened not his mouth. 8 By oppression and judgment he was taken away; and as for his generation, who among them considered that he was cut off out of the land of the living for the transgression of my people to whom the stroke was due? 9 And they made his grave with the wicked, and with a rich man in his death; although he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. 10 Yet it pleased Jehovah to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of Jehovah shall prosper in his hand. 11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by the knowledge of himself shall my righteous servant justify many; and he shall bear their iniquities. 12 Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he poured out his soul unto death, and was numbered with the transgressors: yet he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.
In His Service,