August 21, 2011
New Testament Historical Perspective
Grand Canyon University
The death of Jesus and the ways of God
The death, burial, and resurrection of Christ Jesus are at the crux of Christianity. In hind sight what seemed like foolishness to some on lookers has become the wisdom of God triumphing over evil by the death of His Christ Jesus on the cross. Like the stanza of a well known verse, Christ cried out, “God, my God, why have You forsaken me?” This cry from the cross on the day of His crucifixion was not a cry of defeat, on the contrary; it was a cry of victory in the ears of those familiar with the blessed twenty second Psalm written by His very namesake David the king, the priest, the psalmist. Victory was accomplished by Jesus’ death on the cross, but many would beg to differ as their political and religious disdain for His teachings motivated their contempt; and that contempt for His teachings became the very driving force for His crucifixion. Who are they, one might ask; and why would they kill an innocent man? Well, they are the Jewish religious leaders and the Roman political leaders of Jesus’ day. What motivated these leaders to follow such a heinous agenda? At the onset of Jesus’ ministry, people recognized His message as one being authoritative. He preached the kingdom of God with a conviction and focus unknown before His arrival. Many Jewish religious leaders during the time of Jesus’ ministry had their own interpretations of scripture, but Jesus’ message confronted and exposed the falsehood of the Jewish leaders; and the despised Him for it. The Jewish leaders tried on many occasions to expose Jesus’ message as one of falsehood, but when they tried; His message of truth always prevailed. Confrontations with Jesus and the Jewish leaders continued, and the Jesus’ message continued to prevail and gain a following; and the Jewish religious leadership despised Him all the more. The Jewish religious...