Friday, April 6, 2012

Passion Week: Day 6

Day 6 Friday. Trials, Crucifixion, Death, and Burial.

Jesus' third trial is held early in the morning before the Sanhedrin. The first three trials were before the religious authorities where He is found guilty. Jesus is then taken before Pilate (the fourth trial) where He is found innocent. He is subsequently taken to Herod who also finds Him innocent (the fifth), and then back to Pilate who again finds Him innocent (the sixth) but relents under pressure, no doubt fearing an uprising. He notes on the sign on the cross that His crime was being the King of the Jews. He probably did this to avoid trouble with Rome (There was to be no king but Caesar). 

About 9:00 AM. Jesus is crucified on a hill called The Skull outside the city. Literally, Golgotha in Aramaic, or Calvary in Latin, it was most likely named this because it was the place of execution. While we cannot know for certain, it is tradition that this is the site where God commanded Abraham to sacrifice Isaac. 

At noon, the sky becomes dark. The darkness is highly symbolic of the Father turning His back on the one He had earlier called My beloved Son. No doubt that this was also the Father’s mercy, veiling His Son’s pain and agony. Jesus will make seven proclamations while on the cross. These are known collectively as The Seven Last Saying of Christ. They are:

At 3:00 PM Jesus utters the most important of these sayings to believers when he cries with a loud voice: “It is finished.” This is just one word in the Greek, Tetelestai. The phrase literally means Paid, as in paid in full. The rapidity of the trial and crucifixion was seen as necessary by the Jews for fear of the fickle crowds turning again to embrace Jesus. It was in actuality part of the Father’s plan from the beginning, as Jesus dies while the paschal lambs are being offered at the temple. The Son of God became sin for us! "But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed." Isaiah 53:5 (NKJV) The veil is rent in the Temple (Mk. 15:38

Jesus had been on the cross for 6 hours when His body is given to two of His followers, who up until this point had kept their devotion to Christ secret. (John 3:2) Jesus is laid in Joseph's tomb before the Sabbath began at sunset, or around 6:00 PM. In less than twelve hours Jesus has fulfilled the Father’s purposes: The sin of the world has been placed on the Lamb of God.

Maranatha! Even so, Come Lord Jesus!

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