The Crucifixion Scene
Day: 37 | Plan: Matthew
Today's Reading: Matthew 27:32-56
Matthew 27:42a (NIV) “‘He saved others,’ they said, ‘but he can’t save himself!’”
Roman crucifixion was designed to produce a slow, agonizing death. It involved as much suffering and shame as possible. This excruciating form of public execution was bloody, violent and extremely repulsive.
The Jews believed if you were crucified, you were under God’s curse (Deuteronomy 21:23).
It was on a Roman cross that Jesus, who knew no sin, bore our curse for sin.
Before His crucifixion, Jesus was repeatedly mocked, spat upon and flogged. His body was beaten so severely, He was hardly recognizable. Soldiers stripped Him and led Him outside the city to die a criminal’s death.
While on the cross, passersby hurled insults at Him. The religious leaders taunted Him as they attacked His power to save. Even the two robbers who were being crucified beside Him heaped insults on Jesus.
The sins of the world called for an ugly, agonizing scene.
Sin must be extremely heinous in God’s holy sight to require such a sacrifice.
Jesus certainly had the power to destroy those who mocked Him. He had the authority to command legions of angels to come and attend Him. He could have come down off the cross at any point to save Himself. But He didn’t.
Why? Because it was the Father’s will that He suffer and die as He did. It’s what Jesus came to do. He came to willingly give His life as a ransom for sinners. You and I are sinners, held hostage to sin. That is why Jesus stepped in. He paid the price for our release. It was a holy exchange, Jesus’ sinless life for your life and mine.
On the cross, God treated Jesus as if He lived your life. He did that so He could treat you as if you lived Jesus’ life. Blameless.
Do you understand that it was for you that Jesus endured the cross?
He died for you. He endured the agony of the cross and gave His life to pay a debt that demanded your death. He refused to save Himself so He could save you.
Prayer: Holy Father, I am astounded by Your great love for me. A love so deep, that You would send Jesus to die in my place. Thank You. And because of Your love and grace extended through Jesus I am released from the penalty of sin. What a gift that Jesus died for me. May my life reveal my gratitude. In Jesus’ name, amen.
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