Biblical articles on
Adoption by God
SUBJECT: His Cross and
IF WE WERE THERE
Many gruesome things can be said about crucifixion. Performed by
Romans, crucifixion was a brutal death sentence for mostly slaves, disgraced
soldiers, and foreigners. Nevertheless, Jesus Christ the very Son of God, and
guilty of nothing, experienced this vicious death. What would we have witnessed
if we had been in Jerusalem during the days of Jesus’ crucifixion and His
resurrection? Let’s imagine
Walking along a narrow stone street lined with markets, we encounter a large
crowd of people, many yelling “Crucify Him, Crucify Him!” Peering over peoples’
heads we see a man stumble to His knees as He struggled to carry a wooden
crossbeam to His own crucifixion. This man is Jesus!
We quickly notice the horrific condition of this man. He is a mass of bleeding
flesh. Upon His head is a crown of thorns, causing blood to ooze down his face.
His back is riddled with lash marks, and hanging strips of skin reveal deep,
bloody wounds due to a vicious flogging. As we approach Golgotha, the site of
Jesus’ crucifixion, we watch as the crowd laughed at and spit on Him. We recoil
at the awful sounds of the hammer striking nails into Jesus’ hands, and wince as
nails are driven through His feet! Once the cross beam is secured on a tall
post, we observe Jesus attempt to lift himself up to relieve His unbearable and
excruciating pain. We watch Him struggle to breathe, while hateful comments are
hurled at Him. We notice the blood from His hands and feet dripping onto the
ground below the cross.
We hear Roman soldiers laughing at the foot of the cross as they gambled for
Jesus’ garments. We witness a man offer vinegar to Jesus to drink, and watch
another man thrust his sword into Jesus’ side. Shortly, we hear Jesus cry out,
“It is finished”, and He gave up the ghost.
As Jesus’ body was taken from the cross to be placed into a sepulcher, we watch
as the people, including the chief priests, teachers and elders, nonchalantly
walk away, totally unfazed by Jesus’ suffering. These people were also unfazed
by any suggestion that this man Jesus would arise from the grave.
Leaving Golgotha, we catch snippets of peoples’ conversations. People were
laughing about the rumor that Jesus would arise from the tomb in three days.
Intrigued by such talk, we discussed if briefly, but within minutes we readily
dismissed what we had heard.
A few days later we hear a couple talking about the same subject we had
overheard at Golgotha days earlier. The woman was quite animated as she told the
person with whom she was with that Jesus had arisen from the tomb and that a
woman named Mary Magdalene had actually witnessed the empty tomb. We listened as
she told of two of Jesus’ disciples named Peter and John, standing inside Jesus’
empty tomb and witnessing Jesus’ burial clothes neatly lain, as if Jesus had
ascended right through them. This woman even said that many people had seen this
man. Upon hearing this conversation, I was shocked, and wondered who was this
man called Jesus?
Now, back to the present. Thanks to God’s infallible Word we know who Jesus is!
He is the only begotten (sole) Son of God (John 3:16), and His physical
resurrection is the very foundation of salvation, and here’s why!
Jesus’ resurrection provides proof of His identity. Jesus, being totally man AND
God, displayed total power over death; a power that only the Creator of life
(Genesis 1 and 2) could perform! A power no human being could ever possess.
Thusly, only the Son of God has the power to forgive us of our sins. “And
declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness,
by the resurrection from the dead:” (Romans 1:4)
Jesus’ physical resurrection also proves the Gospel to be TRUE. Paul wrote, “For
I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ
died for our sins according to the scripture;, and that he was buried, and that
he rose again the third day according to the Scriptures:.”(I Corinthians 15:3,4)
Over 500 eyewitnesses saw Jesus after His resurrection. (I Corinthians 15:6,7)
In essence, Jesus was crucified, buried, arose from the tomb, and appeared
It is imperative to believe in Jesus’ resurrection or there can be no hope, no
forgiveness, no eternal life. If Jesus had merely died, having no victory over
death, He would have been just like us, mere mortals, having no power over
death, having no power over sin. “And if Christ be not raised, your faith is
vain; ye are yet in your sins.” (I Corinthians 15:16) Hallelujah, Jesus DID
arise, being victorious over death! ! JESUS LIVES!
Are you like those who watched Jesus suffer? Are you guilty of nonchalantly
walking away from the Son of God? (John 3:16,17) Are you guilty of refusing to
understand who Jesus truly is? Are you indifferent toward Jesus’ agonizing pain
and horrific death? Do you reject Him? Do you scoff at His victory over death?
(I Corinthians 15:1-8; Matthew 28:1-8)
Thankfully, it isn’t too late to reject false religious doctrines which lead
away from the truth of Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection, and thusly, away
from everlasting life! It isn’t too late to recognize how much God hates sin or
to recognize just how much He loves each of us! (Romans 5:8; John 3:16) When
Jesus said, “It is finished”, He was proclaiming that each person’s sin debt
owed to His Father, had been paid, paid in full, if one believes! (John 3:15)
For as long as one has breath, it is never too late to place one’s faith in
Jesus Christ. Terrifyingly, for the unbeliever, one day it will be!
“And these (unbelievers) shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the
righteous (believers) into life eternal.” (Matthew 25:46) These words weren’t
spoken by anyone, but Jesus Christ!