Christian devotions in the Daily-Message

Christian devotions in the Daily-Message

Spared for salvation

“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?”

Matthew 27:46

What transpired at Calvary, occurred in the full control of God and our Savior Jesus Christ. Thus, we read in John 10:17-18: “Therefore doth My Father love Me, because I lay down My life, that I might take it again. No man taketh it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of My Father.'' The Son of God was fully aware of His heavenly mission from the start – even at the age of twelve when He said to His earthly mother and her husband Joseph: “...Wist ye not that I must be about My Father's business?'' (Luke 2:49) And later on, when He was grown up, and met with John the Baptist, the latter said about Him: “...Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.” (John 1:29) There are seven traditional words spoken by Jesus on the cross, three of which are quotes from the Psalms. This includes the sentence by David from Psalm 22 “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” Jesus did not say this because He didn't know what was happening, or because the price was too high for Him, or because He was abandoned and bitterly regretted this end. No, on the contrary. Jesus was not abandoned by God. His entire attention was on His mission to be the Lamb of God, lead to the slaughter, for the remission of sin – Isaiah 53:7 “He was oppressed, and He was afflicted, yet He opened not His mouth: He is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so He openeth not His mouth.” The sentence (Psalm 22) which Jesus spoke on the cross, and many did not understand in that day, was in Aramaic ''Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?''. The English translation is in Hebrew as is written in the customary translations.

When one translates the Aramaic text, the sentence reads: “My God, My God, for what a destiny you have saved me?” The word “lama” means “why” in Hebrew, but in Aramaic it ends with an exclamation mark and not a question mark. It is therefore a type of confirmation of His mission. When Jesus said here that the crucifixion was His mission, purpose and work, He had no doubt – neither in the spoken word, nor the act. He was destined and kept for Golgotha - “Sabachthani” means to be spared, destined and kept. Hereby is confirmed that Jesus lived solely for the purpose of fulfilling His Father's will. He remained aware of this throughout His mission. Jesus was not forsaken on the cross, which He also previously had confirmed to His disciples in John 16:32 “Behold, the hour cometh, yea, is now come, that ye shall be scattered, every man to his own, and shall leave Me alone: and yet I am not alone, because the Father is with Me.'' How could He therefore have been forsaken at the cross? Sin causes separation from God, but that does not apply to One who is sinless (Hebrews 4:15). Thus, we obtain a deeper sense and start to understand that the work on the cross and the Aramaic words (the “destiny”) was a dialogue of obedience and the deepest affection and humility between the Messiah Jesus Christ and His heavenly Father. The penultimate word of Jesus on the cross confirms yet again that His purpose, His mission and His destiny touched God's heart and will in perfect manner, leading to the salvation of the souls of believers: “...It is finished! and He bowed His head, and gave up the ghost.” (John 19:30). Amen.

(Translated by Linda Gates)


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