Wednesday: The Cross: He fulfilled the Purpose

Read Mark 15:22-39.

“All of us like sheep have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way;
But the 
Lord has caused the iniquity of us all to fall on Him.”

Isaiah 53: 6


“For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received,

that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures.”

1 Corinthians 14:3
That was God’s plan.  Jesus would do for man what mankind could not do for themselves.  To redeem mankind, God sent His Son to pay the penalty mankind couldn’t pay.  But what a sacrifice.  Philippians 2: 6-8 tells us that Jesus

was truly God”.

  But He did not try to remain equal with God.  Instead He gave up everything and became a slave, when He became like one of us.  Christ was humble.  He obeyed God and even died on a cross.


Jesus left His rightful place with the Father.  He was born into this world.  He taught us about the Father and how to live as His children.  He then fulfilled His Father’s wish.  He willingly took the sin of us all upon His back.  He endured the betrayal of Judas, the abandonment of the rest of the disciples, the accusations of the Sanhedrin and Pontius Pilate, the shouts of the people clamoring for both His death and the release of the murderer Barabbas, the spit, the verbal humiliation and the physical torture of the Roman soldiers, the taunting of the gathered throng along the Via Dolorosa and then upon Golgotha, and finally the unspeakable agony of the cross. 


It was upon that cross that He bore the worst of it, that moment suspended between heaven and earth when the weight of all sin came upon Him in such force that the Father turned away.  Think about it.  The perfect community that was the Trinity was separated in a manner too profound for any theological tome to sufficiently explain, as the Creator of the world cried out,

“My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me!” 

It was there on that cross the price of the sin of the world was paid in full.  It was there, suspended above the world that He made and below His rightful home in Heaven, that Jesus took our place, dying for us the death we all deserved.  And in that moment of amazing grace a symbol of horrific torture outlined against a dark sky transformed to a symbol of ultimate hope and love.  


“I am not skilled to understand what God has willed, what God has planned,

I only know at His right hand is One Who is my Savior.

I take Him at His word and deed; “Christ died for sinners”, this I read.

For in my heart I find a need of Him to be my Savior!

That He should leave His place on high and come for sinful man to die!

You count it strange? So once did I, before I knew my Savior.

Yes living, dying, let me bring my strength, my solace from this spring,

that He Who lives to be my King once died to be my Savior.”

From a hymn written by Dora Greenwell, 1873 (recently made famous with music written by Aaron Shust.)


Take time to ponder our Savior Who loved us so much that He endured the penalty of our sin!  Ask Him to help you live with a heart of gratitude that not only honors Him but causes you to proclaim what He has done at every opportunity.


Pastor Greg Gaffney