Saturday, April 7, 2012

A Good Friday

I posted this a couple years ago. Updated.
I want to share a cool thing with you.
If you're not a Christian, please read anyway, because it never hurts to have a little information about what those whackos around you believe.

A few people know that Psalm 22 is a description of the crucifixion of Jesus that was written hundreds of years before the event.
David saw it in a vision and it shakes him up so much that he starts out with:

My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?
Many Christians have been taught that, as He was crucified, Jesus was crying this out out to His Father in heaven, because the Father could not bear to look on Jesus, our scapegoat.
That He was separated from the Father.
That Jesus was a curse (and the Father could not be in fellowship with Jesus because it would violate His holiness) because Jesus was carrying the penalty of the sins of the world.

Give me a break.
<< 1 Corinthians 12:3 >> Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed.
Jesus and the Father had this worked out since before the universe was created, and at the last minute The All-Powerful Ruler of More than the Universe flinches?
If the Father and the Son (who with the Spirit are referred to as the "Godhead" in perfect unity) ever separated, I believe the universe would crumble.
As you read the gospels, particularly John's, you see that the Pharisees (some of them, like Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea, were good guys, by the way) were asking Jesus for a sign that he was the Messiah. He continually answered them that when they saw Him lifted up, that would be their sign.

Here He is, lifted up in front of them. He's surrounded by "strong bulls" (prison slang for guards), and the crowd is taunting Him. It's the scene predicted in Psalm 22 .
Then He quotes the first verse.
And they know the rest.
Can you imagine the look on their face when they get it?
Do you get it?


  1. "For our sake he made him to be sin who did not know sin, so that we might become the righteousness of God in him." - 2 Cor 5:21

    I think that's the whole point of the crucifixion so I'm thinking he DID become sin for us and did feel separation from God at those last minutes...
    Except, I will admit I am taken with the explanation you provide (also seen in JESUS OF NAZARETH which I rented during HOly Week and loved) that the Sanhedrin saw that Jesus quoted from Psalm 22 and thought "he truly was the prophecy come true"...

  2. Z: Thanks for the thoughtful exchange.
    I have a couple reasons for "wanting" to see it my way.
    Besides your quote, there is also Ga 3:13: He was "made a curse for us," which I believe has a different meaning than is modernly attached to it.
    There is a doctrine that derives from the concept of Jesus being separated from the Father and actually being sinful (a curse instead of the alternate translation, accursed).
    This doctrine is usually referred to as "The Great Exchange" and results in a belief that Jesus didn't buy our salvation on the cross, but in hell, where he had to suffer "spiritual death" to pay the punishment for our sins. I also believe that this is a logical extension of that concept. If we were going to suffer in hell for being sinful, Jesus must suffer in hell (if sinful), to satisfy the Father.
    Kenneth Copeland, Kenneth Hagen, the elder Osteen (John) and a number of other evangelists used to adhere to this doctrine and preach it, and if you did not believe it, they would break fellowship with you. I know this personally.

    Jameson Fawcett and Brown (my favorite commentary) on the verse you mention:
    sin—not a sin offering, which would destroy the antithesis to "righteousness," and would make "sin" be used in different senses in the same sentence: not a sinful person, which would be untrue, and would require in the antithesis "righteous men," not "righteousness"; but "sin," that is, the representative Sin-bearer (vicariously) of the aggregate sin of all men past, present, and future. The sin of the world is one, therefore the singular, not the plural, is used; though its manifestations are manifold (John 1:29). "Behold the Lamb of God, that taketh away the SIN of the world." Compare "made a curse for us," Galatians 3:13.

    I believe "made sin" means made to bear sin (similar to the scape goat, the sins were put on it and it was run out of the camp, but it couldn't actually become "sinful"). Other translators see it this way also, but theology will color a translation (and vice versa :) ).

    I find a few "problematic" verses that challenge my view (such as you have provided) and the Galatians quote (which I provided), which I can reconcile to my satisfaction.
    I find a more overwhelming concept of the holiness and unity of the Godhead throughout the Bible.
    As I said, the view that He actually became sinful for us leads to the concept that He must then have suffered in hell, which is disputed by His promise to the thief that "this day" he would be in paradise (Abraham's Bosom, not heaven) where the gospel would be preached to the captives and captivity would be led captive, leading to old testament saints being seen walking the streets before the resurrection. His body may have been in the grave, but He was busy elsewhere.
    Wow, did I get carried away, but there's a lot to it.

    It's not a point of contention to me, but I get such a sense of "rightness" of this view in my spirit, that I like to share it.
    I have friends (and some local radio personalities) who were skeptical but after dwelling on it and talking to others came to see it this way. I got introduced to a friends pastor who I found teaches this, and my pastor's father (a pastor himself) came to see it before my pastor did.
    In reading your comment out loud to Scherie I saw that "so that we might become the righteousness" implies that we "become" righteousness, which would be in the same sense of He "became" sin. It's more popularly thought that righteousness is "accounted" to us. So it might be that our sinfulness was “accounted” to Jesus. Which seems to be what JF&B are saying, now that I re-read this.

    Thanks again for showing an interest in the topic.

  3. Ed, I think I agree with the Fawcett/Brown words on SIN...He was the SIN BEARER....that's in SO MUCH scripture. A man who'd lived a sinless life was suddenly our sin bearer...because that's WHY He came to earth. Or most of the reason.
    I also believe that he died and then was in Paradise immediately...where he told the other guy on the cross he'd be with him THAT DAY. Of course, we don't know about "Day" could mean more time, know!
    BUT, if Jesus couldn't die bearing all our sins and then be cleansed of that and seated at the right hand of the Father immediately, then we don't believe our Father is big enough to do that, and He is! Why must He have suffered in HELL? He's GOD..part of THE TRINITY!
    Do I make sense?