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9 Fruits of the Holy Spirit (5) Fruit of Patience
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The Message of the Cross (19) Jesus’ Last Seven Words on the Cross (3)

Manmin News   No. 677
2257
September 06, 2020


“About the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, ‘ELI, ELI, LAMA SABACHTHANI?’ that is, ‘MY GOD, MY GOD, WHY HAVE YOU FORSAKEN ME?’” (Matthew 27:46)

“After this, Jesus, knowing that all things had already been accomplished, to fulfill the Scripture, said, ‘I am thirsty.’…Therefore when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, ‘It is finished!’…” (John 19:28-30)


Jesus, who had come into this world as the Savior of mankind, left behind a few words expressed shortly before He breathed His last on the cross and they are known as “The Last Seven Words on the Cross.” He wanted to plant spiritual life in mankind even until His last moment on the cross. Let us pick up today with the fourth, fifth, and sixth words Jesus bequeathed on the cross.


The Fourth Word: “ELI, ELI, LAMA SABACHTHANI?”

Jesus’ Words “ELI, ELI, LAMA SABACHTHANI?” in Matthew 27:46, when translated, means “MY GOD, MY GOD, WHY HAVE YOU FORSAKEN ME?”

Jesus did not utter these words to God as a form of bitter complaint or to verbally express His torment. In fact, there is spiritual significance of great importance embedded in these words.

At that time, it had been six hours since Jesus was first nailed and hung on the cross (Mark 15:25-34). Even though He did not have sufficient strength He still “cried out with a loud voice,” Jesus had done this in order to remind all people and let them understand why God had forsaken Him and why He had to be subject to crucifixion.

Jesus was crucified in order to redeem mankind from their sins. As all mankind had been destined to be forsaken by God in accordance with the curse of the law, Jesus was cursed and forsaken by God on our behalf. In order to remind all people of this, “Jesus cried out with a loud voice.”

Next, Jesus “cried out with a loud voice” because countless people are still befriending the world and walking on the path to death even though God has given up His only begotten Son for sinners. Jesus wanted all souls to be aware of the reason why He was crucified, accept Him as their Savior, and gain eternal life. For these reasons Jesus cried out in a loud voice “ELI, ELI, LAMA SABACHTHANI?”

If we believe from the heart that Jesus was forsaken by God and crucified on account of our sins, each of us must no longer dwell amidst sin but live a sanctified life and become His child who can call God, “Father”. We must also make a point of diligently spreading the message of the cross in order to lead all those souls on their way to death to the path of salvation.


The Fifth Word: “I am thirsty.”

When an individual bleeds a substantial amount, he suffers from extreme thirst. Now, can you imagine how thirsty our Jesus must have been as He was nailed and hung on a cross in dry air of Israel under the scorching sun for hours? Yet, Jesus was suffering not simply from physical thirst; there is spiritual significance embedded in His words, “I am thirsty.” His words are spiritual in nature, exhorting each of us to quench His thirst by returning the price for His blood.

How, then, can we “return the price for the blood of Jesus”? As Jesus shed His blood in order to save all mankind, the sinners, we must seek out and preach the gospel to all those who are to otherwise end up in Hell. In addition to “directly” spreading the gospel to unbelievers, we can “indirectly” spread the gospel by praying for the salvation of souls and giving God offerings for mission work.

When Jesus said, “I am thirsty,” some people nearby put a sponge full of the sour wine on a hyssop branch and raised it up to His mouth. Jesus received the sour wine not to quench thirst, but He accepted a taste of the sour wine to fulfill the spiritual decree as set forth by a prophecy from the Old Testament (Psalm 69:21), ‘they gave me vinegar to drink’.

Jesus’ having “received the sour wine” attests to the fact that Jesus drank the sour wine and He made it possible for us to drink new wine. The “sour wine” symbolizes the law of Old Testament while “new wine” signifies the law of love of New Testament fulfilled by Jesus Himself.

According to the law of the Old Testament, all sinners were to be punished for their sins and the redemption of their sins was accomplished by the blood of animals they sacrificed to God. As Jesus Himself became an atoning sacrifice and redeemed us from the curse of the law with His death on the cross, however, Jesus “received the sour wine” for us.

Therefore, we will be forgiven of our sins when we believe in Jesus Christ and repent of our sins from the heart. This is the act of “drinking new wine” and to enlighten us of this fact, Jesus said, “I am thirsty” and received the sour wine Himself.


The Sixth Word: “It is finished!”

John 19:30 reads, “When Jesus therefore had received the sour wine, He said, ‘It is finished!’ And He bowed His head, and gave up His spirit.” By saying “It is finished!” Jesus was making reference to how He had accomplished the providence of the redemption of mankind and had fulfilled the law by love.

For “The wages of sin is death,” (Romans 6:23), all sinners are to receive the punishment of death and go to Hell. God’s children, for a long time, had to kill cattle or sheep and sacrifice the blood of the animals for the forgiveness of their sins, but Jesus redeemed us sinners from the curse of the law by offering Himself up to be crucified (Hebrews 7:27).

The steps Jesus took to redeem mankind from their sins were accomplished by His unimaginable and inexplicable love of great magnitude. The precious Son of God came into this world, endured the torment of being arrested and scourged by the sinners themselves, having on a crown of thorns put on His head, and having nails pierced in His hands and feet.

We have received the right to enter Heaven by our faith in Jesus Christ who, in His magnificent love and sacrifice for us, overcame death. Then, what are we to do? As Jesus fulfilled all of the God’s providence with love and sacrifice and became the King of kings and the Lord of lords, we who were saved by Him must also fulfill all of God’s will.

God’s will for us is perfect sanctification and perfect faithfulness. We are to bear the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit, accomplish spiritual love, fulfill the Beatitudes. As He told us, we are to be the Lord’s witness at every corner of the earth and to make every effort in the salvation of souls. Only then can we complete preparing of ourselves as His bride, wholly carry out each of our God-given duties, and on the day of His return, confess to Him, “It is finished!”

Brothers and sisters in Christ, by grasping the spiritual significance of Jesus’ “Last Seven Words on the Cross” and engraving them in your heart, I pray in the name of the Lord each of you will lead a life that is proper in God’s sight and dwell forever with the Lord in the most beautiful heavenly dwelling place.


 

 

 
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