Mat 27.43 He trusts in God. Let God rescue Him now if he wants him, for he said”I am the Son of God”.
Mat 27.54 when the centurion and those with him who were guarding Jesus saw the earthquake and all that had happenned, they were terrified and exclaimed ‘Surely He was the Son of God’.
It has been a dark time this year, the Arab Spring of youthful protests and uprising have become engulfed by religion, giving rise to unbridled violence and religious cruelty, not a mere fringe movement but a massive radicalised conquest. This is the place of death, before the end time Christian revival in a Europe which has hitherto fallen to unbelieving christianity with her empty churches for a 100 years. We have returned to Golgotha, a dark time, but resurrection is at hand.
Golgotha was a place outside the city wall of Jerusalem, where they crucify people at the tree, a place cursed by man and by God. The place of the skull, a place of death was Jesus final place, surrounded by religious taunts by people of faith who threw their curses at Him. It was here that Jesus took our curse, the penalty for our sins if we indeed believe by faith. It was the same people of faith who declared the shema of Israel of loving God and loving ourselves which obviously does not work.
Mat 27.50 and when Jesus had cried out again with a loud voice, he gave up his spirit.
Mat 27.51 at that moment the curtian in the temple was torn into two from top to bottom. The earth shook, the rocks split..
Jesus gave up His Spirit on His own accord. Our sins did not kill Jesus. He died not because of our sins but for our sins. He could have came down from the Cross, totally healed and his angels destroying the people of faith who put him there. But our sins would have remained unforgiven.
The Cross is not about somehow appeasing an angry God, but about a righteous and a just God. Our sin puts us under a curse and condemnation of death. Even the best of us, have sinned against God and man. Under the fall, we belong and worship the devil indirectly and the offerings of power, wealth, greed. We are not really children of God. Adam was never a child of God but a created being in the likeness of God. At the Cross of calvary, we brought back from the devil, and became children of God. At the Cross, Jesus broke the veil to allow us to enter the holy of holies.
As gay christians, we often find ourselves at the Cross, crucified for the sins of the straight community by religious people. We have died many times, our lives often hardened. We know that Father God loves us because he has not with hold His only Son, just as Abraham was willing to sacrifice Isaac at Mt Moriah.
Jesus lost everything at the Cross. The Son of God who had created the universe laid naked, bloodied, mocked and beaten by the Jews and the Romans. Lonely, He was betrayed by all. As gays, we know what it means to loose everything, taken from us, our lives and dignity, our relationships, our freedom to love and be loved.
Actually, we are not really called to follow the footstep of Christ to the Cross to do good works to love and give up everything. That is religious thinking that got the Pharisees puting Jesus to the Cross. Faith is believing that Jesus became our sins nailed to the Cross. Faith is accepting that Jesus becomes our righteousness.
On Friday was Jesus death, but Sunday was His resurrection where He had victory over death, and our sins fully paid and accepted, and the saints of old in hell before the Cross finally delivered. The OT prophets looked forward to the Cross, we looked backwards. Jesus took the keys of death and we may have life hereafter. If our faith is only on the friday where Jesus is not God but a good person, even though we call ouselves a church, then we are pitiful indeed with no power nor ladder to heaven.
Without Christ as God incarnate, the risen Saviour and Lord, we are without Gods grace, mercy and love through the power of resurrection. For Jesus was ressurrected to heaven and gave a new life to each born again christian, born by blood and by water, Jesus our ark, and not mere aligning with love. If Jesus did not rise again, we would still have been in our sin.
There are some who claimed that for the Romans, Jesus was a terrorist who would in no time overthown the colonial powers. This again is not blibical christianity. It was the Jews who had loath Jesus, whose religious police picked Him up, had Him on trial by the High Priest for claiming to be God, and then in a political play handed Him to the Romans for execution, thus blaiming the Romans.
The Romans were never in the picture when Jesus ministry was hounded by the religious legalist. The Romans were indeed oppressors, but Jesus was no activist. The Romans were not bothered about the voice in the desert for He did not challenge their military or political power. It was the Pharisees, the legalist wearing white, and Saducees, the progressives believing in no resurrection, who were perturbed by Jesus, then and today.
Pilate was aware of the political and religious game, knew that Jesus was innocent, and washed his hands clean of the act thus relieving Rome from blame.But Jerusalem did not escape killing God, with a million killed in ad 70. If they had just said” blessed is He who comes in the day of the lord”, they would have received their redemption and healing and would have been protected.
Jesus went to the desert far away from the centers of population, power, preached about repentance and a new kingdom in heaven, with powerful miracles to affirm His Word. Instead, the rebellious religious zealots were the real threat. After Jesus rose again, the rebellion in AD 70 resulted in a million deaths and the expulsion of Jews from Jerusalem making way for the diaspora to Europe.
The white washing to remove Jews from the historical narrative by the theologians is a denial of God’s purposeful dealing of redemption for mankind through Abraham, and the Jews. Mankind was nearly wiped out by the flood, and God had planned for the return through Abraham. Just as the spiritual corruption of the ancients by the inter marriage with demons resulted in the flood, the return was through the faith of a kingdom community, the Jews.
At the Cross of Calvary, God’s heart is for the Jewish people. When He said “Father, forgive them, for they knew not what they have done”, He saw into the future of the millions killed in ad70, and many more millions in the Holocaust. The vile act by the Jews would have cost incredible pain. Just as they were exiled to Babylon by playing prostitutes and worshiping other gods, they were going in for a long exile of 1900 years until 1967.
The pain and loliness that Jesus felt at the Cross would have been terrible. But He saw into the future, where multitudes of people will accept by faith His death and resurrection for their sins, thus coming into the Kingdom of God becoming a child of God. Previously, we have been the prodigal son, so far away from God by own will.
At this Easter, it is a time to place our pain, hurts, rejection, suffering, and torment on Jesus at the Cross of Calvary. In return, Jesus will give us peace, peace with ouselves and peace with God, and where we shall never die but return to heaven one day. Jesus opened His arms wide, bidst us to come to Him for His burden is light and not of the law. The veil to the holy of holies has been torn open, let us come into the throne room of God without fear or judgement but as children of God. We who have been so far away from God can now return to the Father as a beloved child.