Before we journey into Mark’s account of the life of Jesus today. Before we take our walk, I must warn you. The events we are about to encounter are painful. They are painful to Jesus in so many ways. They are painful to his disciples and apostles. These events may even cause you pain. Today we see Jesus turned over to the Roman authorities. Today Jesus faces death.
- Mark 15:1-15 – Jesus stands before Pilate.
- Mark 15:16-20 – Soldiers beat and mock Jesus.
- Mark 15:21-32 – Jesus is on the cross.
- Mark 15:33-41 – Jesus dies.
- Mark 15:42-47 – Joseph of Arimathea buries Jesus.
Thinking these words brings tears to my eyes. Why? Why did Jesus have to suffer? Why did the Jewish religious leaders turn Him over to Rome to face crucifixion? Why could Pilate not grow a backbone and refuse? Why? Why? Why?
When I realize the answer, I do not like what I learn. Jesus had to die. He had to die because of me!
- Sin separates us from God.
- All people sin, there is no one righteous on their own.
- When we sin, we are guilty and worthy of punishment.
- The punishment for sin is death.
- But God loves His creation and does not wish for our death and eternal separation from Him.
- He provides a scapegoat, a sacrificial lamb to take our sin and guilt away.
- That lamb without blemish (sin) was God in the flesh dwelling with us (Immanuel – Jesus).
- God anointed His Son, Jesus, as the King of kings, the Messiah, the Christ, Son of God Most High and made Him as Messiah suffer and die on a cross to bring about salvation for sinners (me).
- Jesus had to die because of you and me!
Consider these lyrics by Stuart Townsend. Every time we sing them in worship, I cry a prayer to God.
How deep the Father’s love for us,
How vast beyond all measure
That He should give His only Son
To make a wretch His treasure
How great the pain of searing loss,
The Father turns His face away
As wounds which mar the chosen One,
Bring many sons to glory
Behold the Man upon a cross,
My sin upon His shoulders
Ashamed I hear my mocking voice,
Call out among the scoffers
It was my sin that held Him there
Until it was accomplished
His dying breath has brought me life
I know that it is finished
I will not boast in anything
No gifts, no power, no wisdom
But I will boast in Jesus Christ
His death and resurrection
Why should I gain from His reward?
I cannot give an answer
But this I know with all my heart
His wounds have paid my ransom
Do not let Jesus’ death be pointless.
The Lancasters performing How Deep the Father’s Love for Us.