John 19:16-30 + Isaiah 53

John 19:16-30

Finally Pilate handed him over to them to be crucified.

So the soldiers took charge of Jesus. Carrying his own cross, he went out to the place of the Skull (which in Aramaic is called Golgotha). There they crucified him, and with him two others—one on each side and Jesus in the middle.

Pilate had a notice prepared and fastened to the cross. It read: jesus of nazareth, the king of the jews. Many of the Jews read this sign, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city, and the sign was written in Aramaic, Latin and Greek. The chief priests of the Jews protested to Pilate, “Do not write ‘The King of the Jews,’ but that this man claimed to be king of the Jews.”

Pilate answered, “What I have written, I have written.”

When the soldiers crucified Jesus, they took his clothes, dividing them into four shares, one for each of them, with the undergarment remaining. This garment was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom.

“Let’s not tear it,” they said to one another. “Let’s decide by lot who will get it.”

This happened that the scripture might be fulfilled that said,

“They divided my clothes among them
and cast lots for my garment.”

So this is what the soldiers did.

Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman, here is your son,” and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home.

Later, knowing that everything had now been finished, and so that Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, “I am thirsty.” A jar of wine vinegar was there, so they soaked a sponge in it, put the sponge on a stalk of the hyssop plant, and lifted it to Jesus’ lips. When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.

Isaiah 53

Who has believed our message
and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?
He grew up before him like a tender shoot,
and like a root out of dry ground.
He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him,
nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.
He was despised and rejected by mankind,
a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.
Like one from whom people hide their faces
he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.

Surely he took up our pain
and bore our suffering,
yet we considered him punished by God,
stricken by him, and afflicted.
But he was pierced for our transgressions,
he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was on him,
and by his wounds we are healed.
We all, like sheep, have gone astray,
each of us has turned to our own way;
and the Lord has laid on him
the iniquity of us all.

He was oppressed and afflicted,
yet he did not open his mouth;
he was led like a lamb to the slaughter,
and as a sheep before its shearers is silent,
so he did not open his mouth.
By oppression and judgment he was taken away.
Yet who of his generation protested?
For he was cut off from the land of the living;
for the transgression of my people he was punished.
He was assigned a grave with the wicked,
and with the rich in his death,
though he had done no violence,
nor was any deceit in his mouth.

Yet it was the Lord’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer,
and though the Lord makes his life an offering for sin,
he will see his offspring and prolong his days,
and the will of the Lord will prosper in his hand.
After he has suffered,
he will see the light of life and be satisfied;
by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many,
and he will bear their iniquities.
Therefore I will give him a portion among the great,
and he will divide the spoils with the strong,
because he poured out his life unto death,
and was numbered with the transgressors.
For he bore the sin of many,
and made intercession for the transgressors.

DEVOTION

On the surface, Good Friday was not a very good day. The events that took place on that day were awful and showed the very worst behavior that humanity had to offer. What was so good about the death and physical torture of a man who brought words of comfort and truth to His listeners? What was so good about the emotional abandonment of all His friends and followers?  When you watch the movie The Passion, you are left in shock and wonder in how this could have actually happened. Good Friday is not good because of what humanity did on that day. No Good Friday is good because of what God was doing that day. Behind the scenes of the physical drama that was unfolding on that unprecedented day, God was securing the salvation of mankind. Through the death of Jesus, God was providing a substitute sacrifice for the sins of humanity. Jesus was paying the price for our sin. He was taking upon Himself the punishment for our sins. This is what Paul meant when he wrote, “God made Him (Jesus) who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God.” 2 Corinthians 5:21

QUESTIONS TO PONDER

When you consider all that Christ went through on Good Friday, how do you feel knowing that He was doing this for your benefit? Isaiah wrote, “By His wounds we are healed.” Have you availed yourself of the spiritual healing that only comes from putting your faith in the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world?

SUGGESTED PRAYER

Lord, it’s hard for me to wrap my heart around all that You have done for all of humanity including me.   You laid down Your life for those who You love.  It’s one thing to try to take in how You clothed Yourself in flesh and lived here being fully God and fully man. But then to think how You were rejected, scorned, beaten, and crucified. You took on the sins of the whole world even though you were sinless. All the punishment that I deserved was put on You and You took it. You have made me cleaned. You have clothed me with a robe of righteousness and a garment of salvation. You have engraved me in the palm of Your hand. You say that I am Yours and You are mine. I have been set free from darkness and brought into Your marvelous kingdom of light. I have been reconciled, redeemed, forgiven, and adopted into Your family. You call me your son/daughter. You have lavished me with Your love. I am secure in You and I am fully loved, fully known, and fully forgiven.

God, when my heart starts to worry about the things going on all around, I ask that you come and counsel my heart, wash me with Your Word, and renew my spirit. You know suffering, You know sorrow, and You understand loneliness.  Help me and Your Church to settle our hearts in You. Thank You that we can keep coming to You over and over again. Help me today to sit and commune with You, my God who understands all things. Thank You that Your love endures all things. Strengthen Your church with power in our inner man so that Christ will dwell in our hearts through faith.  I ask that we know You better Lord and that we will experience the depth, length and width of Your love. I ask all of this in the Name of Jesus Christ, amen.

PRAYER POINTS

  • Jesus was a man of sorrows, pray for those today who have great sorrow in their hearts and lives – that they may know the Lord’s comfort today as they turn toward Him. He is our hope!
  • Pray for the greater one Church all across the globe –in every continent.  Pray for strength, for love to abound, and for power to endure and persevere. Pray that the Church will be mature and fully assured of all of the will of God.
  • Pray Easter weekend. Pray that there would be more people saved than any other year! Pray for hearts to respond to the Father as He draws them to Himself.
  • Pray for COVID-19 to be demolished in the Name of Jesus Christ!
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