The Biblical account of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ must be read and understood by all people that man did not kill Jesus. I repeat, no race of mankind killed Jesus! Jesus makes this fact crystal clear in John 10:18: “No man taketh my life from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have the power to lay it down, and I have the power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.” Jesus is the Pascal Lamb of God slain from the foundation of the world. In the Counsel of God, it was determined that upon the fall of man, Jesus would become the Hebrew gaal, or Kinsman-Redeemer whose blood would pay the price for our Redemption.
Jesus went to the cross voluntarily for our sins, to reconcile us to God. His blood was made the ransom for us all. “All the beasts on Jewish altars slain had not the efficacy to take away our sins.”
“Only Jesus’ blood given upon the altar had the efficacy (power) to make atonement for our souls.” (Leviticus 17:11)
The blood of Jesus does 3 things: It satisfies God. It saves sinners. It shuts the devil’s mouth. When we plead the blood over our lives and situations, and especially our children, “the devil can’t do us no harm.” Amen.
There are 18 Psalms that speak directly to Jesus Christ and the exercises of His Holy Soul. These are classed as Messianic Psalms or pertaining to the Messiah: (Messianic Psalms are Psalms 2, 8, 16, 22, 23, 24, 40, 41, 45, 68, 69, 72, 87, 89, 97, 102, 110, and 118). These Psalms make for excellent study as they project the character of Jesus even before His birth in Bethlehem. It is not questioned that many other Psalms also refer to Christ.
Jesus made 7 declaration or 7 last words from the cross. These inscriptions are preached in pulpits all over the land on Good Friday. They are:
1. “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.” (Luke 23:34)
2. “Verily I say unto thee, today shalt thou be with me in paradise.” (Lk 23:43)
3. “Woman, behold thy son! Behold thy mother! (John 19:26, 27)
4. “Eli, Eli, Iama sabachthani? That is to say My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” (Matthew 27:46) + (Psalm 22:1) + (Mark 15:34 Eloi, Eloi…)
5. “I thirst.” (John 19:28)
6. “It is finished.” (John 19:30)
7. “Father, into thy hands, I commend (place) my spirit.” (Luke 23:46)
Messianic Psalm 22 is the graphic and authentic, scriptural death of Jesus on the cross. We are to know Jesus’ death and other portrayals of His life through scripture and not the vain imaginations of man in media and so forth. We are to study the Holy Bible, the word of God for truth and not entertainment of the word in movies; nor speculations of scholars about Jesus in documentaries. Many of these are academically and scientifically based. Beware. Study and know the truth of God for yourself.
The Messianic Psalm 22 opens with the 4th desolate cry of Jesus from the cross: “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani (My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? Why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring? O My God, I cry in the daytime, but thou hearest not; and in the night season, and am not silent.” (verses 1&2)
This pitiful, desolate and poignant (touching) cry is the Holy of Holies of Jesus in the Bible. For it represents the only time Jesus and the Father have ever been separated. You recall, Jesus always maintained that He came out from the Father, that He and the Father are One. However, when Jesus’ Holy Soul was poured out on the cross “an offering for sin” for the whole world, the Father had to turn His Face, for a Just and Holy God cannot look on sin. (Isaiah 53: and especially verse 10)
Jesus, for the first time ever, was separated from the Father. Jesus was to tread the winepress alone.
Verses 2-5 of Psalm 22 depict Jesus’ crying aloud, fading in and out of consciousness and trying to comfort himself.
Verses 6, 8, 12, and 13 are projections of Jesus’ spirit reflecting the contumely of the crucifixion crowd. (Contumely means rudeness, insulting speech, contemptible behavior)
“But I am a worm, and no man; a reproach of men, and despised of the people.” (v. 6)
“All they that see me laugh me to scorn: they shoot out the lip, they shake their head, saying,” (v.7)
“He trusted on the Lord… Let Him deliver Him …” (v. 8)
“Many bulls have encompassed me …” (v. 12)
“They gaped upon me with their mouths, as a ravening and a roaring lion …” (v. 13)
Verse 14 shows the intensification of Jesus’ pain and suffering for our sins. The bones of His hands, arms, shoulders, and pelvis are out of joint. He is perspiring profusely. The action of His heart is affected: Jesus says, “My heart is like wax; it is melted in the midst of my bowels.” (v. 14)
In verse 15, Jesus’ strength is exhausted. He is extremely tired and thirsty. In one writing of the Gospels, someone gave Him vinegar or gall to drink. It is probably here that Jesus uttered His fifth cry: “I thirst.”
Jesus states in verse 16: “they pierced my hands and feet.”
In verse 17, Jesus is almost nude. His bones and the genitalia are exposed. All the people stare and gape at His nudity. Now all His clothes have fallen off. Jesus is totally naked and embarrassed. He says, “They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture.” (v.18)
Jesus is still talking strongly. Remember, He still has 2 more “Last Words” to utter: “It is finished. Father into thy hands I commend my spirit.”
“Be not far from me, O Lord: O my strength, haste thee to help me. Deliver my soul… Thou hast heard me from the horns of the unicorns.” (verses 19-21)
The Psalm breaks from crucifixion to resurrection in verse 22. The Risen Lord Jesus sings praises to His Father and our Father.
“I will declare thy name unto My Brethren: in the midst of the congregation will I praise Thee.”
This verse 22 is fulfilled in John 20:17 where the Risen Lord Jesus meets Mary Magdalene standing outside the sepulcher and, “saith unto her, Mary, touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren and say unto them, I ascend unto My Father and your Father; and to my God and your God.” Mary Magdalene ran and told the disciples that she had seen the Risen Lord. Later that same Sunday of the Resurrection, Jesus appeared unto his disciples who were locked behind doors in fear of the Jews. He shewed unto them His hands and His side. Jesus said, “Peace be unto you; as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you, receive ye the Holy Ghost…” (John 20:17-23)
Amen. (Oh, Yes!)
Note: Amen is Yes in Hebrew. When we say Amen at the end of a prayer or in church, we are saying Yes (it is so) to what has been said. Please, do not affirm negative statements. “God says yes to you.” (The Message Bible p. 1801 and 1958)
Amen. (Oh, Yes)
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The Reverend Dr. Rebecca R. Rivka, LPC is (ret.) Professor of Psychology, Norfolk State University. Local Elder, VA Annual Conference, African Methodist Episcopal Church, and a faithful member of the Historic St. John’s AME Church, Norfolk, VA The Reverend John D. Burton, Senior Pastor.
Dr. Rivka can be reached at (757) 321-8858