crucifixion described

Excruciating Thursday

Thursday, April 13, 2017

[Reader discretion advised: Christ’s sufferings are graphically described below.]

“But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man” (Hebrews 2:9 KJV).

His three years of earthly ministry have expired, but His greatest work is yet to come!

During the all-night interrogation in the “kangaroo court,” His sentence is passed—execution by crucifixion. They have scourged, beaten, and punched Him. Covered in their spit, they laugh at Him, and strike His head with a rod to force on the crown of thorns. His back shredded, His skull possibly fractured, His beard ripped off. His massive blood loss weakens Him further. Having been stripped of His clothing, He struggles to carry His heavy cross to Mount Calvary: Simon must carry His cross for Him. The crowds watch Him, laughing and jeering. His little flock looks on in total shock.

They lay Him on the wooden cross, yanking His limbs to nail them in place. His bones unbroken, but exposed, and His limbs dislocated. They pierce His hands and feet with long spikes, severing the median nerve in the hands, causing permanent hand paralysis. They raise up that cross, and He hangs, slowly suffocating due to His own weight. Every breath becomes increasingly difficult, His lungs fill with fluid, His heart becomes progressively strained. Eventually, He cannot breathe, and thus dies.

Now imagine His spiritual suffering. Three hours into His crucifixion, His heavenly Father and the Holy Ghost have abandoned Him. For the first time ever, He is totally alone. Physical and spiritual darkness now cover the earth. The weight of all the world’s sin and sins of all time crushes His soul. God’s undiluted wrath falls upon Him, as it does on those suffering in hellfire. He cries out in agony. Hanging on that cruel cross, with His spiritual eyes, He observes Satan himself and all his evil creatures snickering and cheering. He looks out to see His disciples staring at His helpless disfigured body. Oh, if only they knew how His physical and spiritual bodies were being tormented, utterly tortured beyond imagination!

After six hours of excruciating pain, He finally lets Himself die….

Please check out our archived Bible Q&A: “Was Jesus Christ really crucified on Friday?

Our latest Bible Q&A: “Who or what are the ‘Chemarims?’

Bones Out of Joint

Monday, October 10, 2016

“I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint: my heart is like wax; it is melted in the midst of my bowels” (Psalm 22:14 KJV).

Let us consider these “bones… out of joint.”

This past weekend, I visited an injured 79-year-old brother in the ministry. While he had been standing six feet high on a ladder, its feet slid, and so did he! He fell down with the ladder, hitting his head on a rung. His shoulder went through two rungs to hit the concrete floor below! The dear man had to be rushed to the hospital emergency room. Thankfully, he had no head injuries. However, his shoulder was dislocated, and he had very limited use of his arm. He had to be anesthetized so the orthopedic specialist could set the bone back in its socket! In his own words, that dislocated shoulder was the worst pain he had ever felt in his nearly 80 years of life!

As we discussed those events, I reminded him that he was fortunate to be alive. He could have easily fallen on a metal pipe railing nearby, and possibly suffered a broken arm or fatal head trauma! (He would have been fellowshipping with the Lord and the saints in heaven, instead of talking to me at his kitchen table there!)

I reminded him of today’s Scripture. (Incidentally, before I arrived, he had just told someone about that same verse.) King David, about 1,000 B.C., depicted Messiah Jesus being crucified in such graphic language (see verses 1-21). This is amazing proof that the Spirit of God was leading David. The Persians did not invent crucifixion until several centuries after David! The Romans borrowed and perfected crucifixion just before Christ’s birth. Crucifixion, in addition to slowly suffocating them, forced the victim’s bones out of joint. I reminded that brother that, he only had one dislocated shoulder—which was painful enough. I also told him that the Bible says “all” of Jesus’ bones were “out of joint.” Imagine the pain of all your bones dislocated. That condition is beyond human words!

That love that sent Jesus Christ to that awful cross on our behalf is beyond human words, too!

Our latest Bible Q&A: “Does Jesus Christ save us or does the Gospel save us?

Excruciating Thursday

Thursday, March 24, 2016

[Reader discretion advised: Christ’s sufferings are graphically described below.]

“But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man” (Hebrews 2:9 KJV).

His three years of earthly ministry have expired, but His greatest work is yet to come!

During the all-night interrogation in the “kangaroo court,” His sentence is passed—execution by crucifixion. They have scourged, beaten, and punched Him. Covered in their spit, they laugh at Him, and strike His head with a rod to force on the crown of thorns. His back shredded, His skull possibly fractured, His beard ripped off. His massive blood loss weakens Him further. Having been stripped of His clothing, He struggles to carry His heavy cross to Mount Calvary: Simon must carry His cross for Him. The crowds watch Him, laughing and jeering. His little flock looks on in total shock.

They lay Him on the wooden cross, yanking His limbs to nail them in place. His bones unbroken, but exposed, and His limbs dislocated. They pierce His hands and feet with long spikes, severing the median nerve in the hands, causing permanent hand paralysis. They raise up that cross, and He hangs, slowly suffocating due to His own weight. Every breath becomes increasingly difficult, His lungs fill with fluid, His heart becomes progressively strained. Eventually, He cannot breathe, and thus dies.

Now imagine His spiritual suffering. Three hours into His crucifixion, His heavenly Father and the Holy Ghost have abandoned Him. For the first time ever, He is totally alone. Physical and spiritual darkness now cover the earth. The weight of all the world’s sin and sins of all time crushes His soul. God’s undiluted wrath falls upon Him, as it does on those suffering in hellfire. He cries out in agony. Hanging on that cruel cross, with His spiritual eyes, He observes Satan himself and all his evil creatures snickering and cheering. He looks out to see His disciples staring at His helpless disfigured body. Oh, if only they knew how His physical and spiritual bodies were being tormented, utterly tortured beyond imagination!

After six hours of excruciating pain, He finally lets Himself die….

Please check out our archived Bible Q&A: “Was Jesus Christ really crucified on Friday?

Up From the Grave He Arose #3

Thursday, May 14, 2015

“Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it” (Acts 2:24 KJV).

The third verse of Robert Lowry’s classic 1874 hymn “Up From the Grave He Arose” highlights today’s Scripture.

“Death cannot keep its prey,
Jesus my Savior;
He tore the bars away,
Jesus my Lord!”

A special religious day was coming in just three hours, so Israel wanted the legs of Jesus and the two criminals broken (John 19:31-37). Once the legs were broken, crucified individuals could no longer push themselves up with their feet. Hence, they would suffocate (and die) quicker. Israel did not want those bodies to remain crucified on “God’s” holiday. The soldiers came and broke the legs of both criminals who had been crucified on either side of Jesus. When they came to the Lord Jesus’ body, they knew He was gone. They did not break Jesus’ legs (fulfilling Exodus 12:46 and Numbers 9:12). Instead, a soldier pierced Jesus’ side with a spear, and blood and water poured out. Yes, the King of glory was gone.

The Prophet Isaiah, some 700 years B.C., wrote of Messiah Jesus: “…for he was cut off out of the land of the living” (53:8). Daniel the Prophet added a century later, “…Messiah shall be cut off” (9:26). Jesus’ death was not a swooning (fainting spell) or some form of trickery. He was, as we would say, “stone cold dead.” He had given up His spirit to the Father (Luke 23:46) and His soul was now down in the heart of the earth (Matthew 12:39,40).

In those three days and nights between His death and resurrection, there was immense satanic opposition to keep Jesus Christ dead. All the powers of hell, Satan, and death were against Him (Hebrews 2:14,15)! But, God the Father had the final say in the matter, and today’s Scripture says He raised up Jesus Christ from the dead. Hence, Jesus Christ said, “I have the keys of death and hell” (Revelation 1:18). What had belonged to Satan, was now Christ’s! Because He had fully paid our sin debt, death could not bind Him. The Lord Jesus Christ had to—and did—resurrect! 🙂

Excruciating Thursday

Thursday, April 2, 2015

[Reader discretion advised: Christ’s sufferings are graphically described below.]

“But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man” (Hebrews 2:9 KJV).

His three years of earthly ministry have expired, but His greatest work is yet to come!

During the all-night interrogation in the “kangaroo court,” His sentence is passed—execution by crucifixion. They have scourged, beaten, and punched Him. Covered in their spit, they laugh at Him, and strike His head with a rod to force on the crown of thorns. His back shredded, His skull possibly fractured, His beard ripped off. His massive blood loss weakens Him further. Having been stripped of His clothing, He struggles to carry His heavy cross to Mount Calvary: Simon must carry His cross for Him. The crowds watch Him, laughing and jeering. His little flock looks on in total shock.

They lay Him on the wooden cross, yanking His limbs to nail them in place. His bones unbroken, but exposed, and His limbs dislocated. They pierce His hands and feet with long spikes, severing the median nerve in the hands, causing permanent hand paralysis. They raise up that cross, and He hangs, slowly suffocating due to His own weight. Every breath becomes increasingly difficult, His lungs fill with fluid, His heart becomes progressively strained. Eventually, He cannot breathe, and thus dies.

Now imagine His spiritual suffering. Three hours into His crucifixion, His heavenly Father and the Holy Ghost have abandoned Him. For the first time ever, He is totally alone. Physical and spiritual darkness now cover the earth. The weight of all the world’s sin and sins of all time crushes His soul. God’s undiluted wrath falls upon Him, as it does on those suffering in hellfire. He cries out in agony. Hanging on that cruel cross, with His spiritual eyes, He observes Satan himself and all his evil creatures snickering and cheering. He looks out to see His disciples staring at His helpless disfigured body. Oh, if only they knew how His physical and spiritual bodies were being tormented, utterly tortured beyond imagination!

After six hours of excruciating pain, He finally lets Himself die….

Please check out our archived Bible Q&A: “Was Jesus Christ really crucified on Friday?

Damnation and Salvation

Friday, September 26, 2014

“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” (Luke 23:35 KJV).

Today’s Scripture is proof that God’s ways and God’s thoughts are truly higher than ours!

Imagine that you literally and physically stood right before Calvary’s cross as Jesus hung on it. You would see a truly awful sight, a body so disfigured that the Bible says it did not resemble that of a human. “As many as were astonied at thee; his visage [appearance, particularly his face] was so marred [disfigured] more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men” (Isaiah 52:14). It is doubtless that those who actually witnessed it ever forgot that scene they saw on Golgatha, when the Son of God was crushed under the weight of Father God’s wrath and man’s wrath.

From all outward appearance, Jesus had lost. The Roman and Jewish governments had finally arrested their chief enemy and had condemned Him to death. He was now nailed to a cross, wearing nothing—His lacerated skin rubbed against the splintered wood as He pushed Himself upward to exhale. It was becoming harder to breathe, and the onlookers taunted Him (today’s Scripture; cf. Matthew 27:39-43; Mark 15:29-32). “You saved others and You cannot save Yourself! Come down from the cross and we will believe You!” (They fulfilled Psalm 22:7,8, written almost 1,000 years earlier.)

The God of the Bible always thinks differently from us humans, just as He said in Isaiah 55:8,9: “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Jesus Christ appeared to be weak and defeated on Calvary, but as God saw it, He stayed there so that His damnation would result in our salvation. He could have saved Himself, but then He would not have saved us! He chose not to save Himself—He chose to save us instead! What wisdom! What selflessness!

Our latest Bible Q&A: “I am new to the Bible. Where should I begin?

Excruciating Thursday

[Reader discretion advised: Christ’s sufferings are graphically described below.]

Thursday, April 17, 2014

“But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man” (Hebrews 2:9 KJV).

His three years of earthly ministry have expired, but His greatest work is yet to come!

During the all-night interrogation in the “kangaroo court,” His sentence is passed—execution by crucifixion. They have scourged, beaten, and punched Him. Covered in their spit, they laugh at Him, and strike His head with a rod to force on the crown of thorns. His back shredded, His skull possibly fractured, His beard ripped off. His massive blood loss weakens Him further. Having been stripped of His clothing, He struggles to carry His heavy cross to Mount Calvary: Simon must carry His cross for Him. The crowds watch Him, laughing and jeering. His little flock looks on in total shock.

They lay Him on the wooden cross, yanking His limbs to nail them in place. His bones unbroken, but exposed, and His limbs dislocated. They pierce His hands and feet with long spikes, severing the median nerve in the hands, causing permanent hand paralysis. They raise up that cross, and He hangs, slowly suffocating due to His own weight. Every breath becomes increasingly difficult, His lungs fill with fluid, His heart becomes progressively strained. Eventually, He cannot breathe, and thus dies.

Now imagine His spiritual suffering. Three hours into His crucifixion, His heavenly Father and the Holy Ghost have abandoned Him. For the first time ever, He is totally alone. Physical and spiritual darkness now cover the earth. The weight of all the world’s sin and sins of all time crushes His soul. God’s undiluted wrath falls upon Him, as it does on those suffering in hellfire. He cries out in agony. Hanging on that cruel cross, with His spiritual eyes, He observes Satan himself and all his evil creatures snickering and cheering. He looks out to see His disciples staring at His helpless disfigured body. Oh, if only they knew how His physical and spiritual bodies were being tormented, utterly tortured beyond imagination!

After six hours of excruciating pain, He finally lets Himself die….

Our latest Bible Q&A: “Was Jesus Christ really crucified on Friday?