Journey with Christ

What Christians Live For: The Redemption from Jesus Christ (Journeys 58-60)

The Time had come for Jesus Christ, in which He was to die on the cross. However, Jesus knew it was for redemption’s sake He was to do this. For this is a special occasion, one in which His humanity sorely rejected, but His Spirit fully rejoiced. This momentous occasion was to bring the full redemption of the sins of God’s People, and was to win the victory over Hades and death.

SCRIPTURES: Mark 15:20-16:11; Matthew 27:31-28:15; Luke 23:26-24:12; John 19:16-20:18

Via Dolorosa from Pilate’s Praetorium to the cross

In a nutshell: Friday before 9 am, Jesus is mocked, clothed with His own garments, and then led away to be crucified. Simon of Cyrene, a passerby, is compelled to go with them to bear the cross of Jesus. A crowd follows and the women bewail and lament Him; Jesus gives warning. The crucifixion at Golgotha, by the Romans soldiers, between two thieves, about 9 am. Golgotha is the Aramaic word for “skull,” and Calvary is the Latin expression. Jesus is offered a drugged up wine, but rejects it, because He wanted to endure the crucifixion entirely for the sins of humanity.

The Proceeds of Jesus’ Death

Golgotha was the place of Jesus’ crucifixion where He was led, to which was before 9 AM probably. They took the robe off Him and put the raiment on Him. The man named Simon of Cyrene was someone they asked to carry His cross for Him. He was given vinegary wine to drink and gall to eat, to which He did not want. Jesus turned to them and said to the daughters of Jerusalem not to weep for Him, but to weep for themselves and their children. He Prophesied to them that one day they would suffer.

(The Romans would later attack Jerusalem, to which, women that are now sad about not having children would be safer than the others, for they would not have to see their children being crushed in the onslaught from the Romans. The brutal punishment on the innocent Jesus shows that the Romans would be far more brutal on the sinners/guilty.)

The first three hours on the Cross: From 9 am until noon on Friday. It is not easy to tell the precise order of events during this period of three hours since the Gospels do not present them in the same detail or order.

The four soldiers who carried Jesus decided to throw dice for Jesus’ personal possessions. They hung Jesus upon the cross, and then placarded a sign above His Head that announced the charge that He was condemned so that passersby knew what He was guilty of. Many people, including members of the Sanhedrin, insulted Jesus. Jesus was crucified next to two other criminals. Everyone mocked Jesus for His claiming to save others but He could not save Himself. However, if Jesus saved Himself, He could not save sinners. One of the criminals realized His Divinity, and repented, thereby receiving the saving power of Christ that very day.

While on the cross, He prayed for enemies in Luke 23:34, “…Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do…” He made a promise to the repentant robber next to Him in Luke 23:43, “…Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.” He also made a charge to His Mother and to His Beloved Disciples, John in John 19:26-27, “…[To Mary:] Woman, behold thy son!… [To John:] Behold thy mother!” John was instructed by Jesus to take in His Mother to his own home.

Three hours of darkness: The time is from noon to 3 pm.

Jesus’ mother, Mary, followed Him to the cross, and had comfort from John and three other women: Salome (Mary’s sister) the mother of the Disciples James and John, Mary the mother of James and Joses, and Mary Magdalene. They came closer to the cross.

During the last three hours, a strange darkness overspread the land, as the wrath of God fell upon Jesus. The veil of the Temple was rent from top to bottom. Jesus had a cry of desolation, and wanted His final words to be heard by enough people around. He asked for something to moisten His Mouth; therefore, He was given a little vinegar from a sponge, and then He cried out “It is finished.” He has completed the Work that God sent Him to do!

While on the cross, Jesus spoke a few more sayings. First was His cry of desolation in Mark 15:34; Matthew 27:46, “…My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” He soon cried in physical anguish in John 19:28, “I thirst.” After that, He cried in victory, “It is finished.” Then was the cry of resignation before giving up the ghost in Luke 23:46, “Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit.”

At 3 pm, Jesus died.

Jesus has died, and it is important to note that the veil was rent from top to bottom and an earthquake occurred at the moment of Jesus’ death. This demonstrated that the Jewish religious system has ended and that there is an opening of the door to God’s Presence. The earthquake even caused graves to break open, and certain believers of the old era to be raised to life, which showed the dramatic Triumph over death that Jesus won!

The centurion in charge was filled with wonder at what he saw, for he was convinced that Jesus was truly as He said, and others even changed their attitudes toward Jesus. Many who came as spectators returned with sorrow and fear, and wondered what all of the signs had meant. The phenomena that occurred was atypical of normal death scenarios. Possibly there was an omen that certain things would happen upon the death of an important person, and therefore, many had likely recognized this.

The Burial of Jesus

Friday Afternoon before 6 pm, soldiers pierce Jesus’ side with a spear. Joseph of Arimathea obtains permission from Pilate to take the body of Jesus. Joseph buries Jesus’ body in his own new tomb. Nicodemus adds spices for his burial clothes.

Per the request of the Jewish leaders, Pilate had the tomb guarded with Roman soldiers to ensure no one could remove or mess with Jesus’ Body. The tomb was sealed with a huge stone that blocked the entrance so that no one could enter, even if they tried by force and got by the Roman guards. They secured it so well, because they knew this was a Powerful Man!

The Resurrection & 40 Days

Beginning on the day of Resurrection, there is a 40 day period, the last period of Jesus’ Life on Earth. We detail part of this now, and in one final blog post for the Journey with Christ series. Jesus appears in Judea and Galilee. Of this period, we see that He remained at or near Jerusalem for a week. Then, He probably left at once for Galilee. In the month that followed, we cannot fix the exact time of the events that occurred in Galilee, but just at the end of the forty days, we find Him again in Jerusalem.

Three women appear to see Jesus at the tomb: Mary Magdalene, Mary the Mother of James, and Salome.

Bible notes: Matthew only records two of the women from the cross of that group, Mary the mother of James and Mary Magdalene. However, Mark records Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome in the group.

The three women at the cross were also the three women that were in a group together, as they had went to gather spices for anointing Jesus. They bought the spices and were ready to journey back to Jesus.

And then the earthquake erupts…

The great earthquake resounds scaring the watchers at the tomb, as the Angel of the Lord descended to roll away the stone. His countenance was described as lightning and His raiment as white as snow. The watchers of the tomb looked like dead men, because they were so astonished.

The women arrive at the Tomb followed by His Disciples

The time is about sunrise Sunday Morning. The women arrive at the tomb. There were the three: Mary Magdalene, Mary Mother of James, and Salome. Other women who had accompanied Jesus from Galilee followed these women.

The three women found that an Angel had removed the stone. Mary Magdalene hurried to tell Peter and John. Meanwhile, Mary the Mother of James, Salome, and the other women arrived at the tomb, entered the tomb, and saw the Angels who assured them Jesus had risen. They ran from the tomb in fear and joy to inform Jesus’ Disciples. Jesus had already risen at early dawn on the first day of the week.

He was buried shortly before sunset on Friday, and at sunset, the Sabbath began. So He lay in the tomb a small part of Friday, all of Saturday, and 10-11 hours of Sunday. This corresponds with the seven times repeated statement that He would, or did, rise “on the third day,” which could not possibly mean after 72 hours. The phrase two or three times given, “After three days,” naturally denoted for Jews, as for Greeks and Romans, a whole central day and any part of a first and third, thus agreeing with, “on the third day.”

Even the “three days and three nights” of Matthew 12:40 need not, according to known Jewish usage, mean more than we have described. It is a well-known custom of the Jews to count a part of a day as a whole day of twenty-four hours. Besides, the phrase “on the third day,” is obliged to mean that the Resurrection took place on that day, for if it occurred after the third, it would be on the fourth day and not the third.

The women quickly went to the Disciples proclaiming the news, to which, Peter and John were the most anxious to see for themselves (as they knew the women were not telling idle tales). They all ran back to the tomb to see that Jesus had been indeed raised. They all believed that Christ had risen after going into the tomb.

Mary Magdalene returned to the sepulchre and stood, “without at the tomb weeping.” She stooped to look in the tomb and saw the two Angels. Then, turning around, she thinks she sees the gardener, but it is Jesus. He gives her a message, and she takes the tidings to the Disciples. There are five appearances given as occurring on the day of Jesus’ Resurrection and give other appearances occur subsequently during the forty days.

The five appearances of Jesus after His Resurrection:
  1. To Mary Magdalene
  2. To the women returning from the tomb with the angelic message
  3. To Peter
  4. To the Emmaus Disciples
  5. To the absent Disciples

Mary Magdalene is seen weeping at the sepulchre and stooped to see the two angels. She was told by the angels that Jesus has risen, to which she turns around and sees Jesus standing there. He asks her why she weeps and whom she seeks. She supposes Him to be the gardener and wondered where Jesus was. As Jesus spoke to her telling her about the ascension being nigh, she knew it was Him. He told her that there was no need for her to cling to Him in this way, for He will be ascending soon and will not be upon them physically anymore. She should go and tell the Disciples what He told her.

Jesus has appeared to the other women of that group (Mary the mother of James and Salome), as they were on their way to tell the Disciples of the discovery. He encourages them to carry on with telling them that He is coming to Galilee and they should go there too to see Him.

The Roman watchers went into the city to speak to the Chief Priest and recount all that had happened. Upon this, a meeting with the Sanhedrin convened, and the soldiers were bribed and persuaded to give the story that, while they were asleep, the Disciples came and stole the Body of Jesus. Therefore, they took the money and did as they were told. This is the same thing that is reported to this day among the Jews.

Here are the truths that could have been found out that would have proved these soldiers wrong for their claims the Disciples took the Body of Jesus:

  • The fact that there was a death penalty for guards that fell asleep while on duty… were these men sentenced to death then?
  • They surely could not have stayed asleep during the moving of the stone and Body, as there would have had to be quite some noise on moving it (it likely could not have been moved so quietly).
  • If they were asleep, how could they have known who had taken the Body of Jesus?

Thoughts about the Death, Burial, & Resurrection of Jesus Christ

It’s not good for us to forsake God’s Will just for the sake of others or for our own comfort. It is important to be attentive to God’s Will at all times, and follow through with it no matter what. If we forsake His Will for the sake of others, we let others convince us not to obey Him. If we forsake His Will for our own comfort, we are intentionally disobeying Him. Jesus proved His obedience by ignoring the mockers and His own comfort. He was perfectly obedient unto God’s Will!

Not only did Jesus transcend His own comfort, but He also transcended death by declaring victory. We must learn from this that we must overcome our fears, anxieties, and comforts so that we may do His Will and finish the race that is set before us!

Let us seek to glorify God through our true repentance and helping others repent of their sins. We must live sober, righteous, and Godly lives, because we have the right to because of the death of Christ! We see His Love for us, so that we may repent and be prepared for the Kingdom.

Let us prepare our hearts daily for Christ to Minister and encamp within us that He may overfill us with His Love so that we may spread His Love around rapidly to people. May we adorn ourselves with the love of God (just like the spices to His clothing) so that people may know of His Love!

Many people guard their hearts and put walls up so that the Lord may not enter therein with His Love. We must remove the barriers of our hearts so that He may encamp within with His Overflowing Love!

Love for Him always draws us closer to Him, because He desires that we draw to Him, for He is ready to continue expressing His Love. Let us fall down and worship Him for His Great Love for us! He has come to give us Redemption. Let us give thanks! Glory unto God! See that His Work is finished, see His Love for us, go and tell people all around of His Work, for He did it to redeem us of our sins and give us Eternal Life. Don’t wait around… go and tell people everywhere! Glory in the Heavens, He is Risen! Hallelujah!

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