Judas walked with, and was even chosen by Jesus, the greatest teacher and healer of all time and the omniscient Son of God. Judas personally witnessed Jesus heal the sick. The blind saw. The lame walked. The deaf heard. Jesus walked on water and even raised the dead back to life.
After seeing with his own eyes, the phenomenal miracles worked by Jesus, why did Judas betray the greatest man who ever lived? The answer is simple – greed – money. The same scourge which we can see all over the world today.
Jesus was betrayed with a kiss from Judas, the kiss of death. If we asked today, “Does this world want Jesus?”, the answer is No. No because they see in their own selfish hearts the unwillingness to give anything to anyone unless they have a promise that they will get more back. Never mind Christ going to Calvary to give everything for us, to die for the sins of the world.
The world cannot understand Christ’s agonising sacrifice because the world is dark with its all-consuming avarice and specifically, greed for money. To freely give something precious away, solely for the good of others, is far from their hearts. If Jesus thought the same way, the world would end up in hell.
We Christians are supposed to be the Light of this world. I myself do not see this. They have become similar to the world and extremely difficult to tell the difference between them and unbelievers. They have forgotten about preaching Christ and Him crucified on Calvary. Instead the main preaching in many churches today, is compromise and the tickling of ears with the prosperity gospel. This I do not have anything against except when it is continuously, aggressively advanced whilst Calvary is not mentioned at all.
Make no mistake. God WILL hold you accountable when you meet Him face-to-face. What is He going to say to YOU? “Well done good and faithful servant” or “Go away from Me. I do not know you”. You choose. Life… or death?
He suffered and He died for you,
An agonising death on a rugged cross
Tortured and crucified for you,
To save the sick, the lonely and the lost
Black hearted Pilate washed his hands in a dish of delph
It could have been in blood as much as in water
For he may as well have nailed Jesus to the cross himself
It was he who gave the fatal order
They surrounded Him in the dark of night
Armed guards with torches aglow
The crowds milled expecting a fight
But Jesus said, “It is I you seek, let the others go”.
On His Head a crown of black thorns they did add,
Their tips dipped in a deadly poison
A practice that could drive ordinary men mad,
As the Blood of Christ turned those tips to crimson
The mass of bleeding tissue was revealed
As ruthless Romans scourged again and again
Strips of skin were torn and peeled;
But not even once did Jesus complain
They mocked and insulted
They ripped the cloak from blood congealed
They pierced His Hands and His feet
His back was like a furrowed field,
When they nailed Him to that cross,
They nailed our sickness and our sin
They nailed your pain and your loss
So you would learn the Kingdom of God is within
His friends who loved Him looked up and cried
The sky darkened and clouds gathered as if nightfall
When Jesus looked down at the mob, just before He died
His Heart of Love still forgave them all
He had created the very wood and also the nails
And even the merciless men who drove them through
Despite the leather whip with it’s leaded tails
He pleaded, “Forgive them Father; they know not what they do”.
They took Him from the cross and gave Him to His Mother,
She cradled and she held this Blessed Fruit of her womb
She cried for her baby that once she lay in a manger
But now she prepared to lay her baby in a tomb.
However three days later the impossible happened
And Mary’s pierced heart was healed
She screamed with Joy as the tomb was opened
Jesus had defeated death, to all it was revealed.
He had endured and He had triumphed, this story is true
How He dispelled darkness with the light of love that day
And He would suffer it all over again, even if for only you
So that you too can live again in a most abundant way
Who is this faithful man who now holds out His Hand?
This man who is always honest, always true
Who speaks to pain and misery and it’s forever banned,
He is the one who will never leave or forsake you
You may not know Him yet but He knew you before you were born,
He knows everything about you, your strength and your frailties
He loved you in the womb, before you were even formed
And He will love you forever, and through all eternities
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16
Jesus had endured the agony of the scourging. He was stripped of His clothing and His hands tied to a post above His head. The Roman Legionnaire then stepped forward with the flagrum in his hand. This was a short whip consisting of several heavy, leather thongs with two small balls of lead attached to the ends of each . The heavy whip was brought down with full force, again and again on the torn and bloody back of Jesus.
When the centurion determined that Jesus was near death, the beating stopped. The half-fainting Jesus was then untied and allowed to slump to the stone pavement, wet with His own blood. Thinking it a great joke they continued to mock and abuse Him until they tired of their sadistic sport.
Isaiah the prophet who lived many hundreds of years before Jesus walked the dusty streets of Jerusalem prophecised: “But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed”. Isaiah 53:5
Jesus is led away to be crucified, making him carry his own cross.
The heavy beam of the cross was then tied across His shoulders, and the procession of the condemned Christ, two thieves and the execution detail, began its slow journey. The weight of the heavy wooden beam, together with the shock produced by copious blood loss, was too much. He stumbled and fell. The rough wood of the beam gouged into the lacerated skin and muscles of His shoulders. He tried to rise, but human muscles had been pushed beyond their endurance.
And as they came out, they found a man of Cyrene, Simon by name: him they compelled to bear his cross. Matt 27:32. Ironically Simon was made to bear the cross of Jesus when Jesus was actually bearing Simon’s cross by dying in his place.
They came to a place called Golgotha (in Aramaic) , meaning “The Skull”. ‘Calvary’ comes from the Latin.
Here, the beam is placed on the ground and Jesus is quickly thrown backward with His shoulders against the wood. The Legionnaire feels for the depression at the front of the wrist. He drives a heavy, square, wrought-iron nail through the wrist and deep in the wood. Quickly, he moves to the other side and repeats the action, being careful not to pull the arms too tightly, but to allow some flexing and movement.
The beam is then lifted in place at the top of the posts and the title reading “Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews” is nailed in place. The left foot is pressed backward against the right foot, and with both feet extended, toes down, a nail is driven through the arch of each.
Despite the agonising pain that seared through his body, Jesus looked down on His jeering tormentors and said,
The soldiers gambled for Jesus’ clothing. When they did this, they fulfilled a prophecy which said, “They divided my garments among them, and gambled for my clothing.”
Psalm 22:14-18: 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. My strength is dried up like a potsherd; and my tongue cleaveth to my jaws; and thou hast brought me into the dust of death. For dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have inclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet. I may tell all my bones: they look and stare upon me. They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture.
Jesus was crucified between two robbers. One of them mocked Jesus, but the other said, “Don’t you fear God? We are guilty, but this man is innocent. Jesus, please remember me in your Kingdom.” Jesus said to him, “Today, you will be with me in Paradise. No pomp or ceremony, no long-winded prayers, just a repentant sinner receiving forgiveness from His compassionate father.
His last commands to His apostles was the Great Commission, to go out into the world and preach His Gospel that men might be saved and here, even here on the cross He reached out once again for one more soul.
If you take Calvary out of the Gospel, you have no Gospel to preach because it is Christ’s sacrifice on Calvary that redeems us all from sin.
Paul… Five Fold ministry ireland
The crowd and the Jewish leaders mocked Jesus, saying, “He saved others; himself he cannot save. If he be the King of Israel, let him now come down from the cross, and we will believe him”. Matt 27:42 kjv. “He saved others..” Ironic again that little did they realise they were actually testifying to the Glory of God that Jesus healed and saved others.
It was the middle of the day, but darkness came over the whole land. It stayed dark from noon until 3:00 in the afternoon.
Many women were there including Mary the mother of Jesus, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Joses and the mother of Zebedee’s children and others which followed Jesus from Galilee ministering unto Him.
When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son!Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home. John 19:26-27
Here Christ again demonstrates His compassion, love and humanity, this time concerned for the welfare of His mother. In the Ten Commandments, such was the importance of honouring our parents, that in this command He promised a reward. “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you” (Exodus 20:12).
And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? Jesus cried out to His Father as for the first and only time the Godhead, the trinity are separated as Jesus bears the sins of the world…. for you and I. Jesus fulfilled the prophecy Psalm 69:21 by saying, “I thirst”.
Then He cried out, “It is finished! Father, I give my spirit into your hands.” Then he bowed his head and gave up his spirit. In John 10:18 regarding His life Jesus said, “No one taketh it away from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment received I from my Father“.
When he died, there was an earthquake and the large curtain in the Temple that separated the presence of God from the people was torn in two, from the top to the bottom.
From the writings of Josephus, a famous first century Jewish historian, this veil was somewhere near 60 feet high. Josephus also tells us that the veil was four inches thick and that horses tied to each side could not pull the veil apart. The tearing of the veil dramatically symbolised that the shedding of His own blood, was sufficient atonement for sins. The way into the Holy of Holies was open for all people, for all time.
Through his death, Jesus opened a new and living way for people to come to God.
Jesus saith unto him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life: no one cometh unto the Father, but by me”.
When the soldier guarding Jesus saw everything that happened, he said,
“Certainly, this man was innocent. He must have been the Son of God.”
Then Joseph and Nicodemus, two Jewish leaders who believed Jesus was the Messiah, asked Pilate for Jesus’ body. They wrapped his body in cloth and buried it in a tomb cut out of rock. Then they rolled a large stone over the opening.
Jesus has Paid in Full the price of our salvation, to be reconciled with God. He offers you this free gift now.
Although the offer doesn’t expire until you do, many who plan to seek God at the eleventh hour, die at 10.30.
Immediately after Jesus was baptized, the Holy Spirit led him out into the desert, where he fasted for forty days and forty nights. During that time he was tempted by Satan.
Satan said, “If you are the Son of God, turn these rocks into bread so you can eat! Jesus replied, “It is written in God’s Word, ‘Man does not live only on bread, but on every word that God speaks!“
Then Satan took Jesus to the highest point on the Temple and said, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down, for it is written, ‘He will command His angels to catch you so your foot does not hit the ground. But Jesus replied, “It is also written in God’s Word, ‘Do not test God.”
Then Satan showed Jesus all the kingdoms of the world and all their glory and said, “I will give you all this if you bow down and worship me. Jesus replied, “Get away from me, Satan! It is written in God’s Word, ‘Worship only the Lord your God.”
Then Satan left him to wait for a better time. Angels came and took care of Jesus.
Satan was so foolish to offer Jesus, something that He already owned. Rather than sending him to Hell where he belonged, Jesus simply defeated Satan by quoting the Word of God.
When John grew up, he became a prophet. He lived in the wilderness, ate wild honey and locusts, and wore clothes made from camel-hair.
Many people came to listen to John. He preached to them, saying, “Repent, for the Kingdom of God is near. Some people repented and were baptized when they heard John’s message, but there were many religious leaders who came to be baptized without repenting and confessing their sins.
John said to the religious leaders, “You bunch of snakes! Repent and change your behavior. Every tree that does not bear good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.” This fulfilled what the prophet Isaiah said,
“Behold, I send my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way.” (Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. ) Matt. 7:20(KJV)
Some Jews asked John if he was the Messiah. John replied, “I am not the Messiah, but there is someone coming after me who is much greater than I am. I am not even worthy to untie his sandals.
The next day, Jesus came to be baptized by John. When John saw him, he said,
John said to Jesus, “I am not worthy to baptize you. You should baptize me instead.” But Jesus said, “You should baptize me, because it is the right thing to do.” So John baptized him, but not because Jesus had sinned—he never sinned.
When Jesus came out of the water, the Spirit of God took the appearance of a dove and landed on him. At the same time a voice from heaven said, “You are My beloved Son, and with you I am well pleased.”
Later when Jesus went into Caesarea, Philipippi He asked His disciples, “Who do men say I am?” They replied, some say John the Baptist, some say a prophet. This was we believe, plain silly. Although John was a great man He was no comparison to Jesus. He never worked a miracle in his life, never healed anyone. His job was to proclaim the first coming of the Messiah, Jesus Christ. Above, God the Father didn’t mention John, only His Son.
God had told John, “The Holy Spirit will land on someone you baptise. He is the Son of God.” There is only one God. But God is three persons, the Father, Jesus the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
God had stated who Jesus was. John saw and bore record that this was the Son of God. Then, in our opinion, this is where John erred. He pointed to Jesus, others began to follow Jesus. Yet why did he not? What was wrong with him? He continued in dead works. And this is what many churches do, continue in works that produce No fruit. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. Matt. 7:20(KJV)
In John’s case, this is why the enemy was able to move so quickly. After many years preaching without hindrance, now he was promptly arrested and beheaded. He was continuing in a work that was already finished.
God promised Abraham that through him all people groups of the world would be blessed. This blessing was the coming Messiah who would one day provide the way of salvation for all people groups.
God’s covenant with Abraham, “I will make of thee a great nation,” was fulfilled in three ways.
(a) In a natural posterity – “as the dust of the earth,” Gen. 13:16; John 8:37 namely the Hebrew people.
(b) In a spiritual posterity – “look now toward heaven… so shall the seed be” (John 8:39); (Rom 4:16-17); (Rom 9:7-8); (Gal 3:6); (Gal 3:7); (Gal 3:29), namely all men of faith, whether jew or gentile.
(c) fulfilled also through Ishmael (Gen 17:18-20).