Stage 9: Why hast thou forsaken me?
There was darkness throughout the land from 12:00 noon to 3:00 p.m. on the day of Christ’s death. At this point, Jesus was experiencing the most intense spiritual and emotional pain of the Calvary’s Cross experience. Back in the Garden of Gethsemane, the anticipation of this time caused Jesus to ask His Father to find another way. As He looked into the cup He was asked to drink, the upcoming separation from His Father caused Him to sweat as with great drops of blood. However, when it became apparent that there was no other way and the Will of God was clear to Jesus, He bowed His Will to the Will of His Father.
Matt. 26:39: And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.
And now, between the 6th and 9th hour, the horror of the experience was upon Him. He was undergoing the pain of His first-time-ever separation from His Father. He was experiencing the same pain that those who do not make it into the Kingdom of God will face. This spiritual pain of separation from His father was far more intense and excruciating than any physical pain could ever be. His separation caused Him to cry out in desperation and despair: “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”
Matthew 27:46 And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?
In Matthew 27:46, Jesus cried in agony,
“My God, why hath thou forsaken me?”
His cry told us that losing God’s Presence
It is the most horrific thing that can ever be.
So, let’s fight on Christian soldiers
Despite all that we must endure
Let’s be even more determined
To make access to God’s Presence secure.
Stage Ten: Jesus cried again
Then, when it appeared that this single most challenging historical event ever would never end, it was over. It ended when Jesus put His spirit into the Hands of His Father, declared it to be finished, and gave up the ghost.
Jesus commended His spirit unto God according to Luke 23:46:
46 And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the ghost. When He cried, “it is finished!” and gave up the ghost, His suffering ended, for His work was done.
When Jesus died, several things happened:
Matt. 27:51-53 And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from top to bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;
52 And the graves were opened, and many bodies of the saints which slept arose,
53 And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.
The temple veil consisted of two 60 ft. high structures, one at the entrance of the Holy Place and another between it and the Holy of Holies. Only one person, the high priest, was allowed to “go behind the veil” once yearly to atone for the people’s sins. The tearing of the temple veil signified that the way to God was opened through Jesus Christ. It also meant that the middle wall of partition between Jews and Gentiles was destroyed. Ephesians 2: 14-18:
14 For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us;
15 Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace;
16 And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:
17 And came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh.
18 For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.
What did Jesus mean when He said, “It is finished?” When He spoke these words to all humanity, He said:
I have done what my Father asked me to do.
I fulfilled the Law and the Prophets
I healed the sick and I raised the dead
I ushered in a New Covenant
I learned obedience through the things I suffered. (Heb. 5:8)
I lived holy before men to demonstrate that it could be done.
I became Sin so that humanity would not have to pay the penalty for their sins.
I endured the beatings, the agony, the pain.
I paid the sin debt.
I established the bridge between mankind and my Father.
I laid the foundation.
I opened up the way.
I overcame death, Hell, and the Grave.
I defeated Satan!
And now Jesus is resurrected, He is alive and He is seated at the Right Hand of our Father.
He is King of Kings and Lord of Lords!
Yes, it is finished!
This post is an attempt to present a clear understanding of the suffering of our Lord and Savior as he died for your sins and mine. Hopefully, it gives an appreciation for what He went through for us. But, know this one thing. Jesus will never suffer in the way that He did ever again. His Father resurrected Him, and now he reigns triumphant at the Right Hand of God. He indeed is our King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Jesus is alive!
When we partake of the Holy Sacrament that many of us call the Lord’s Supper, we do it to remember what He did for us. 1 Cor. 11:23-26 says:
23 For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, that the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:
24 And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.
25 After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, this cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.
26 For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come.
As a result of this review of the Ten Stages of the Suffering of Christ, I pray that lost men and women, boys and girls, will give their hearts to the Lord and be saved. Because of the suffering of our Savior, salvation is free. But we must never forget that it cost our Heavenly Father His only begotten Son, and it cost Jesus Christ His life. May God bless you as you receive Him and walk in the newness of life. And, if you are not saved yet, please get saved today.
(This review was mainly written based on two study bibles, Dake’s Annotated Bible and Life in the Spirit Bible. I appreciate the Lord for both.)