Christians the world over will be rejoicing come Sunday, April 20, 2014 as the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ remembers the Passion of their Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. We will be praising God that He raised up His Son from the grave even as He had promised to do so in His Word. These words will be said by just about every Christian, "He is Risen! Hallelujah!"
The Scriptures speak to the truth that the Lord Jesus Christ was and is God who came down in the flesh. He left behind his Glory (ἐκένωσεν, ekenosen) that He had with the Father, to come and make available a perfect sacrifice so that those who believe on His name could receive eternal life by having their sins, transgressions and iniquities washed by the blood of the Lamb. But there was only one way that this could be accomplished; which meant that the perfect Lamb of God had to be brought to the slaughter so that His pure blood could be offered on the altar in heaven before the Holy God of Israel.
Yet Jesus was a man. Jesus came down into the flesh so that He could be our perfect High Priest who could feel the things that we have felt as it is written in
For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham. Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted.
We see His agony as expressed in the Garden of Gethsemane where He literally sweated out blood from His forehead. Medically speaking, Jesus was suffering from a condition called 'hematohidrosis.' It is a very rare condition and according to Dr. Dave Miller, Ph.D.,
"only Luke referred to Jesus' sweat (idros) - a much used term in medical language. And only Luke referred to Jesus' sweat as consisting of great drops of blood (thromboi haimatos)-a medical condition alluded to by both Aristotle and Theophrastus (Hobart, 1882, pp. 8-84). The Greek term thromboi (from which we get thrombus, thrombin, et al.) refers to clots of blood (Nicoll, n.d., 1:1631; Vincent, 1887, 1:425). Bible scholar Richard Lenski commented on the use of this term: "'as clots' thromboi means that the blood mingled with the sweat and thickened the globules so that they fell to the ground in little clots and did not merely stain the skin" (1961, p. 1077).
The Lord Jesus felt the agony of what a man would feel knowing that he is walking straight towards his own death. Jesus faced His own will as opposed to His Father's will; so we read that
Then cometh Jesus with them unto a place called Gethsemane, and saith unto the disciples, Sit ye here, while I go and pray yonder. And he took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be sorrowful and very heavy. Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me. 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 being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.
We can rejoice that the Lord Jesus submitted His own will to that of the Father's and went as foretold in Isaiah 53:7, "...he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth."
When the Temple guards came for him after Judas had sold his Master for a mere 30 pieces of silver, Jesus was led away as if He was a criminal. They then placed Him next to the real criminal, Barabbas and asked the crowd who they wanted to have released to them that year. The people chose the real criminal, Barabbas. What should be interesting to note are the names of these two contenders:
Bar Abbas = Son of the Fathers
Bar Abba, Yeshua = Son of the Father
The crowd that day preferred a true criminal rather than the true Son of the Holy Father; the perfect Son, who always pleased His Father; the Messiah was then to be crucified as a criminal, when He was Holy. It was the Garden of Eden being played out again. The choice between Good and evil; Adam and Eve chose their own way, which was evil and the people that were there during this age were once again choosing their own way, thus the evil way. They were calling that which was good as if it were evil; and calling that which was evil as if it were good.
And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary, there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the other on the left. Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots. And the people stood beholding. And the rulers also with them derided him, saying, He saved others; let him save himself, if he be Christ, the chosen of God. And the soldiers also mocked him, coming to him, and offering him vinegar, And saying, If thou be the king of the Jews, save thyself. And a superscription also was written over him in letters of Greek, and Latin, and Hebrew, This Is The King Of The Jews.
And it was about the sixth hour, and there was a darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour. And the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was rent in the midst.
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. Now when the centurion saw what was done, he glorified God, saying, Certainly this was a righteous man.
There isn't any question as to the Lord Jesus' righteousness, except by those who do not know Him. Which, in that case, it does not matter if they do question His righteousness, because again, they do not KNOW Him. But of all the important phrases, saying, quips, quotes or anything else one can come up with as a writer or pundit, the best exclamation is based on these Scriptures.
Now upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulchre, bringing the spices which they had prepared, and certain others with them. And they found the stone rolled away from the sepulchre. And they entered in, and found not the body of the Lord Jesus. And it came to pass, as they were much perplexed thereabout, behold, two men stood by them in shining garments: And as they were afraid, and bowed down their faces to the earth, they said unto them, Why seek ye the living among the dead?
He is not here, but is risen!...
These Seven words rejoices the spirit of every faithful disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ, not just looking forward to Palm Sunday when prophecy was fulfilled as He, Jesus, rode into Jerusalem during His triumphal entry, being hailed as the King of Israel. But His disciples continue to rejoice from Palm Sunday to the time of Passover, when the True Lamb of God was sacrificed for the sins of the world. God Almighty was fulfilling His Word when He had promised that the Gentiles would also partake and have a place in the family of God as well.
Many people claim to be Christian....but are you a DISCIPLE? There is a difference. Since Jesus Christ is the true Messiah, the true Passover Lamb which takes away the sins of the world, this would be a great time to find yourself on your knees, repenting of your sins, transgressions and iniquities, pleading the atoning blood of the Lord Jesus Christ. He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins (John 1:9). Best of all....
HE IS RISEN!