This Sunday we’ll be reading about the crucifixion of Jesus in our study of Luke. We’ll be covering ch 23:32-49.
What emotions do you feel as you read over this passage? The Gospel accounts are meant to instruct us, but they are also intended to engage us on every level. Some truth has to be felt before we could ever come close to contemplating or embracing it. This section is one of those, I think.
As we meditate on the events, there are things that stand out which help to expand our understanding of what Jesus was accomplishing on our behalf.
I v34, Jesus gives his famous response to the mistreatment he suffered. What do we glean about the intended purpose of this sacrifice from those words?
The sign they affix to the cross declares Jesus to be King. It was meant as a mockery, but the rest of the New Testament expounds on the deeper meaning of this, indicating that this was, indeed, Jesus’ moment of triumph (Col 2:15). Jesus is truly King. But what do we make of a King enthroned on a brutal cross? What sort of kingdom is this?
Jesus then extends mercy and the promise of entrance into God’s realm to the criminal being crucified with him in v42-43. What did the criminal do to merit this welcome? How can his example help us to understand the nature of our own relationship with Jesus?
Why do you suppose the sun went dark? Read Genesis 1:1-3. Do you see any correlation between these two events?
The temple in Jerusalem had a heavy curtain which hung as a divider between the main temple and the Holy of Holies – the place of God’s presence. That curtain was torn in two at Jesus’ death, according to v45. What message does the removal of that barrier send to us?
It is a heavy passage to deal with but filled with so much hope as we meditate on it. I look forward to exploring this passage together. Hope you can join us this Sunday!