The King on the Cross!!!
And when they had come to a place called Golgotha, that is to say, Place of a Skull, they gave Him sour wine mingled with gall to drink. But when He had tasted it, He would not drink. Then they crucified Him, and divided His garments, casting lots, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet They divided My garments among them, And for My clothing they cast lots.” Sitting down, they kept watch over Him there. And they put up over His head the accusation written against Him: THIS IS JESUS THE KING OF THE JEWS. Then two robbers were crucified with Him, one on the right and another on the left. And those who passed by blasphemed Him, wagging their heads and saying, “You who destroy the temple and build it in three days, save Yourself! If You are the Son of God, come down from the cross.” Likewise the chief priests also, mocking with the scribes and elders, said, “He saved others; Himself He cannot save. If He is the King of Israel, let Him now come down from the cross, and we will believe Him. He trusted in God; let Him deliver Him now if He will have Him; for He said, ‘I am the Son of God.’”Even the robbers who were crucified with Him reviled Him with the same thing……… Matthew:27:32-44.
It should be noted that for the past few days, we have been repeating what was already covered in Matthew Gospel. This is because we don’t want to skip this very crucial aspects of the Death and crucifixion of Christ and also the Gospel of Matthew gives us a full report of the Events and so we see it necessary to report it fully. So bear with us. Remember what the Holy Spirit said that through Paul in Philippians 3:1, ” For me to write the same things to you is not tedious, but for you it is safe.”. But by the Grace of God, in few days we will pick the Gospel of John which is quite different from Matthew, Mark and Luke. Finally we have come to the point when Jesus was actually Crucified and we shall see what He is trying to teach us on the Cross.
And when they had come to a called Golgotha, that is to say, Place of a Skull, they gave Him sour wine mingled with gall to drink. But when He had tasted it, He would not drink.: Wine mixed with gall is like a pain killer that Roman Soldiers give to those who was to be Crucified so that during the period of crucifixion, they will feel less pain. The gall was to make them dull to pain and less sensitive to what was happening around them. So when Jesus tasted it, He had a prompting from the Holy Spirit not to drink it. Jesus had to be sensitive on the Cross because there are things to be accomplished. There is nothing Sinful in taking Pain Killer during operations and medical examination. But for Jesus, there are things He had to accomplish on the Cross before He died. For Example, He had to pray for the forgiveness of those who are Crucified Him(Luke 23:34), He had to Commit His Mother Mary into the hands of John(John 19:26), He had to commit His Spirit into the Father’s Hand(Luke 23:46) and most importantly, He had to save one of thieves Crucified together with Him(Luke 23:43). So He need to be ready and available to the Father and sensitive in the Spirit so He refuse to drink the wine mixed with gall. There is a great lesson here for us, Luke 21:34 says, ” Take heed to yourselves, lest your hearts be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness, and cares of this life, and that Day come on you unexpectedly.” We can be so taken up and drunk with the cares of this world and family responsibilities and Earthly things and we can spend all our days thinking about it over and over to the extent that we are not sensitive to be a blessing to other people, to forgive those who have offended us and save those going to Hell around us. Jesus could forgive others because He was sensitive to the Spirit even in His own Sufferings. I perceive He was saying to the Father, “Lord, in this few hours left for Me to Die, what would You have Me do? Is there anything that is left for Me to accomplish before Death?” My Brothers and Sisters, we can become so drunk with the worries of this Life that we become so insensitive to the needs of those around us. This is what is happening to many many Christians. And the Devil has got many believers drunk with the riches of this world and occupied with the cares of life to the extent that they cannot hear what God is saying to them. Think of the number of things you must have missed because you are taken up with the cares of this Life. We need to cast those care upon the Lord and say, “Lord I want to be sensitive to your voice. I refuse to be drunk!!!”
Then they crucified Him: It is very significant how the Holy Spirit recorded the Crucifixion of Jesus in all the Gospels. He did not go into imaginary details as some Preachers will do. It just says in three words, “They Crucified Him”. Today there are Preachers who expand on the details of the Crucifixion and the agony that Jesus went through and even speak for over two hours or more of the Details of the Crucifixion of Christ to stir up Human emotions. It is a Soulish thing to do. The Holy Spirit does not want that type of Soulish emotion. It is easy to hear a Preacher expand on the physical sufferings of Christ and ends up crying bitterly. I remember as a Kid each time I watch the movie of Jesus being beaten and Crucified, I weep. But guess why I was weeping? I was weeping because I felt pity for Jesus, I was emotional stirred to pity Him. I was not weeping because of my Sins. I was weeping because of what I heard and saw. And just as Jesus said to the Daughters of Jerusalem when they were lamenting when they saw Him carrying the Cross, He said to them, “Do not weep for Me, but weep for yourselves and for your children(Luke 23:28). This is exactly what the Lord will say to all those weep today when they see how much the Lord suffered on the Cross. If you want to Weep, Weep for yourself that You are in Sin!!! You are in a More terrible condition. So we are not called to expand the agony and crucifixion of Jesus. He was Crucified is enough!!! What we are called to emphasis is Romans 6:6 which says, ” knowing this, that our old man was Crucified with Him, , that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin.” And Galatians 2:20 which says, ” I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” These are the teachings that is lacking in Today’s Christianity. Many have not come to experience “The Crucified Life”. They only sit at the Cross Weeping for the Crucified Christ. They have not experienced the essence of His Death. They Weep and get emotional when they hear about the Crucified Lord but go back home to the same old sinful ways. Let us therefore go beyond the emotion until our will is yielded to the Lord.
and divided His garments, casting lots, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet: They divided My garments among them, And for My clothing they cast lots.”: Again and again we have found this phrase written about Jesus, “That the Scriptures might be fulfilled”. For Example: (Matt 1:22, 2:15,17,23, 4:13, 12:17).all through the Book of Matthew, we see things happening in Jesus life which was to fulfill the Scriptures. Now at His Death, even what the Soldiers were doing to Him was to fulfill the Scriptures(Psalm 22:18). Psalm 22 is called the Psalm of the Cross. Virtually all the verses spoke concerning Jesus death on the Cross. What we see in all these is that there was a specific plan that the Father had made for Jesus Life right from the time of His birth till His death and resurrection and Jesus was seeking to fulfill the Will of the Father. In the same way, the Father has a Plan for our life also. Psalm 139:13-16 says, ” For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb…. Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in Your book they all were written, The days fashioned for me, When as yet there were none of them.” The early you recognize that God has a plan for your life, better it is for you to seek to fulfill it. There is no partiality with God our Father, He loves us exactly as He Loves Jesus(John 17:23). If the Father had a plan for Jesus life from birth to death, then You can be absolutely sure that He has a plan also for you. But this will not be Fulfilled unless we believe and sought after it. This is why we must pray and call out to God and keep our Hearts Pure from Sin so that our mind can be clear and sensitive to the voice of the Holy Spirit. Let us therefore long to fulfill what God has written in His books about us. At the end of our lives, it must be written about us that, “He Walked as the Holy Spirit has led Him”
Sitting down, they kept watch over Him there. And they put up over His head the accusation written against Him: THIS IS JESUS THE KING OF THE JEWS. Then two robbers were crucified with Him, one on the right and another on the left. : As if Crucifixion was not enough, they sat down and watched Him probably, they were thinking He was going to Disappear miraculously. They watched Him to see the end. He was Crucified in the middle of two thieves as if He was the Chief of all thieves. But even in all these that the Soldiers did, they were unconsciously only fulfilling what the Scriptures has said in Isaiah 53:12, ” He was numbered with the transgressors” What a wonderful life to live!!! That even those who hate us and do Evil to us are only fulfilling the Plan of God for our lives. Indeed, ALL things works together for good for those who love God(Romans 8:28).
And those who passed by blasphemed Him, wagging their heads and saying, “You who destroy the temple and build it in three days, save Yourself! If You are the Son of God, come down from the cross.” Likewise the chief priests also, mocking with the scribes and elders, said, “He saved others; Himself He cannot save. If He is the King of Israel, let Him now come down from the cross, and we will believe Him. He trusted in God; let Him deliver Him now if He will have Him; for He said, ‘I am the Son of God: Again all this was to fulfill the Scriptures!!! Psalm 22:6-8 says, ” But I am a worm, and no man; A reproach of men, and despised by the people. All those who see Me ridicule Me; They shoot out the lip, they shake the head, saying, “He trusted in the Lord, let Him rescue Him; Let Him deliver Him, since He delights in Him!”It is amazing how when we walk in the Will of God that those around us are only fulfilling the will of God. In fact, God knows exactly what they are going to say!! Everybody turned against Him!But He was silent, He had Power but He refuse to use it, He chose not to call Angels from Heaven to avenge Him because He was determined to fulfill the Scriptures. He would rather die than disobey God. This is where He is an Example for us to follow. Let us therefore give thanks for everything, for if we Love God and are sure that we are seeking to fulfill His Plans for our lives, All things will work out for good, even what our enemies do and say will work for our good.
Even the robbers who were crucified with Him reviled Him with the same thing: initially, both robbers were insulting Him and following the crowd but one of the robbers finally changed. And I have been thinking, what was it that made Him changed? And says to Jesus, “Lord, remember Me when you come into Your Kingdom(Luke 23:42)”. I believe this was the Reason, that when All this Mocking, insults ridiculing were going on, He saw Jesus absolutely Silent just as He was silent before Pilate. And this convicted Him. He probably never knew much about Jesus but when He saw Jesus on the Cross completely Silent not replying any of the charges, insults and ridicules but instead He hears Him saying, Father forgive them for they don’t know what they are doing(Luke 23:34)”, He sees Him caring for His Mother saying, ” John Please take care of Your Mother(John 19:26-27)”. When He sees all these, He became Convicted. He says, “This is not an ordinary Man!!! This Must be the Son of God!!!” And that’s why He turns to the other thief and said, ” Do you not even fear God, seeing you are under the same condemnation? And we indeed justly, for we receive the due reward of our deeds; but this Man has done nothing wrong.” Then he said to Jesus, “Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.” How did he come to a conclusion that Jesus had done nothing wrong? I perceive that when a person refuse to reply false accusations and insults but instead ask the Lord to forgive them, those around gets revelation and gets convicted about their Sins. This is exactly how people will know that we are the Sons of God even today. It will be seen in the way we conducted ourselves when others treat us badly.
Finally, Let us note this. Why did Jesus forgive This Thief and not the other? Was Jesus partial? Was Jesus angry because the other one insulted Him? Far from it!!! It was simply because one was honest about his Sins while the other was not. The Robber that was not forgiven said to Jesus, “If You are the Christ, Save yourself and us(Luke 23:39)” I perceive what He was saying was that, “Hey Man, if you have the power as Christ, Save yourself and us. We don’t deserve to be Here, what we have done is not a criminal offense. It is not our fault that we are here. The judge was too harsh in His judgment, it is our parents fault. They did not take care of us. It is the economic situation of the country that led us into stealing. Save Yourself and save us, for it is not our fault!!!” But the other thief rebuked His friends and said, ” We indeed justly, for we receive the due reward of our deeds; but this Man has done nothing wrong.” Then he said to Jesus, “Lord,remember me when You come into Your kingdom.” I perceive He was saying,” Lord, we deserve to be here, we deserve to be Crucified. We are getting the exact punishment we deserve. We deserve to Die. But have mercy on Me Lord, when You return in your Kingdom, remember Me” And immediately, the Lord turned to Him, saying, “Verily Verily I say unto You, Today, You shall be with Me in Paradise” What do we learn from here, Jesus Loves Honest People ” Those who acknowledge their Sins and Failures, the Lord is quick to forgive them. No matter what you have done, even if you are on your death bed, all you need to do is to acknowledge your Sins before Jesus. But those who blame others for their Sins, never gets forgiveness. Those who blame their parents and government and others for their Sins miss salvation. Let us therefore be honest with our Sins and seek not to blame others or justify ourselves.
Dear Friend, Don’t be drunk with the cares of this world, instead be sensitive to the voice of God to accomplish what He has for you in your life time. Live your life pursuing the will of God and seek to fulfill all that is written about You. Don’t be afraid and discouraged, if you love God I can guarantee you 100%, that All that the enemies do or say to You is just a fulfillment of God’s purpose for Your Life. Be honest with Your Failures when you come to Jesus for He Love Honest People. May the Lord give us Grace to fulfill all that the Lord has for us in Jesus name.(Amen). God bless you. Have a blessed day.
# Everyday with Jesus.